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Kajukenbo founder - Joseph Holck

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Offline John Bishop

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Kajukenbo founder - Joseph Holck
« on: January 16, 2003, 11:45:38 AM »



Brief Biography of JOSEPH HOLCK, Shihan

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Joichi Matsuno, JUDAN (10th Degree Black Belt) changed his name to Joseph Holck due to World War II, Pearl Harbor, anti-Japanese feelings against any American citizen of Japanese heritage.

Holck, Shihan, began training in Danzan-Ryu Jujitsu in 1938 at the KODENKAN under Professor H. Seishiro Okazaki.  He later received instruction under instructors Bing Fai Lau and Sig Kufferath at both the Kodenkan and Kaheka Lane dojos on the territory of Hawaii. Hawaii had not yet become a state at that time.

In 1944, he volunteered for the U. S. Army and underwent Basic Training in Texas.  Due to his martial arts background, he was designated the hand-to-hand combat instructor of his basic training unit.  Following World War II, Joe Holck, Shihan, was stationed in Germany during the European Occupation.  He was assigned as hand-to-hand combat instructor for the 9th Infantry Division Non-Commissioned Officers' Academy.

In 1947, Holck, Shihan, returned to Hawaii and continued training in Danzan-Ryu Jujitsu under Kufferath, Sensei.  He received his Kaidensho Moku Roku (instructor's scrolls) from Professor Okazaki in 1949.

Between 1947 and 1949, Holck, Shihan was also one of five co-founders of an eclectic Hawaiian bred martial arts system known as KAJUKENBO, along with Adriano Emperado, Peter Choo, Frank Ordonez and Clarence Chang.

About this same time ( 1948 ), Holck, Shihan, began Kodokan judo training under the great Professor T. Inouye, Rokudan (6th Degree Black Belt), and former All-Japan Collegiate Champion.  In 1951, Joe Holck, Shihan, received his Shodan in judo from the KODOKAN. 

Holck, Shihan, continued teaching martial arts in Hawaii until 1964, and then moved to Tucson, Arizona.  That same year, he received his Godan (5th Degree Black Belt) from the American Jujitsu Institute.   

Shortly after his settling in Arizona, Holck, Shihan, took over as chief instructor of the KODENKAN of Tucson dojo, started by his younger brother, Roy A. V. Holck, Sensei in 1962.   

Later that year, he received training in the Hakkoryu style of Jujitsu under John Graves, Sensei, Yodan (4th Degree Black Belt).  Holck, Shihan, received his Shodan rank a year later.

The original KODENKAN of Tucson dojo grew into an organization founded by Holck, Shihan and his family in 1967, known as the KODENKAN YUDANSHAKAI, "School of the Ancient Traditions Black Belt Society".

Since that time, Joe Holck, Shihan, has been intensely involved in his organization, KODENKAN Yudanshakai, which teaches not only Danzan-Ryu Jujitsu, but also Shorin-Ryu Karate, Wado Kai Karate Do,  Matsuno-Ryu Goshin-Jitsu and Kajukenbo.

Danzan Ryu as translated and interpreted by Holck, Shihan, means in a deeper sense, "steps to greater heights", and alludes to the climbing of a mountain.  The Danzan Ryu system teaches the student to think beyond the achievement of higher ranks in the martial arts.  Instead the student learns to develop and grow throughout the steps in life itself.   

In 1989, after a very long and extremely distinguished career in the martial arts, Joe Holck, Shihan, was elevated to the rank of JUDAN (10th Degree Black Belt).

In the past 60 plus years, Holck, Shihan, has been recognized for his contribution to the martial arts from all sectors of our society.  These are too numerous to mention in this short biography.  He has actively encouraged Jujitsu randori competition and has cultivated an interest in competitive Jujitsu Kata and Jujitsu Freestyle.

« Last Edit: April 03, 2008, 12:52:52 AM by John Bishop »
John Bishop  8th Degree-Original Method 
Under Grandmaster Gary Forbach
K.S.D.I. # 478, FMAA


"You watch, once I'm gone, all the snakes will start popping their heads up!"  Sijo Emperado