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The evolution of Shotokan Karate Do associations

By Dr. Christian Tribowski

When a movement becomes bigger, but wants to maintain order and set technical as well as behavioral standards, it is just a matter of time until it forms an association. This is a normal process of professionalization.

The same happend to Shotokan Karate Do. Since grand master Funakoshi, several associations have emerged. Some have already been closed. Some have created new branches or split into different suborganizations. Over the course of the last 70 years a constant evolution took place.

However, the ecology of Shotokan associations has become difficult to grasp. Especially for beginners it appears like a complex puzzle. In order to give you an overview, the Asai Shotokan Association International created the geneology of Shotokan Karate organizations. We hope this leads you through the jungle of Shotokan associations.


Our aim is to cover them all. In the end, Shotokan is one big community.

Your association is not included in the chart? Please let us know. We are curious to hear from you and will add it.