About Ottawa JKA
As a non-profit organization, the Ottawa JKA dojo maintains the quality and values of traditional Shotokan Karate and has been officially recognized by the government for its contributions to the community. Our goal is to enhance personal development and provide an equal opportunity for individuals who want to learn and improve. We believe that through arduous training one can develop control over their mind and body. We encourage every student to push themselves to the best of their ability and discover their true potential so that they can become better equipped to overcome challenges and obstacles in real life and become positive contributors to the society.
Ottawa JKA was founded by Minoru Saeki upon his arrival to Canada in 1973. The father of modern Shotokan Karate that we know today, the late Masatoshi Nakayama Sensei himself, was present at the opening of the dojo at Cambridge St. South. Master Nakayama, the Chief Instructor of JKA at that time, visited Canada to present an honorary 6th degree black belt along with Saeki Sensei to the Prime Minister Brian Mulroney. Throughout its history Ottawa JKA received recognition from federal, provincial and municipal government representatives for its contributions to the community.
Saeki Sensei later started an annual summer training camp, where he would invite instructors from Japan and gather with students for a week of intensive training. This camp grew to become one of the biggest Karate camps in North America (known today as the CJKF Summer Camp). Masahiko Tanaka Sensei was a big contributor in the development of Karate in Canada with his fall “Koyo Camp” often held in Ottawa which attracted participants from all over the country and abroad. Ottawa JKA has hosted many events over the years and created opportunities for the dojos across North America to exchange knowledge and experience.
Ottawa JKA continues to collaborate with Japan to develop Karate in North America. In 2013, Seiji Saeki, one of the dojo instructors, started his training in Japan at the Chiba Institute of Technology University Club under the mentorship of Keisuke Nemoto. Nemoto Sensei has been a great contributor to Seiji's development and inspiration for his Karate journey, as he later enrolls in a 2-year Foreign Trainee program at the JKA Headquarters in Tokyo. Seiji became one of the very few foreigners to have completed the training and at the Tokyo HQ. Throughout his time in Japan he also qualified for the All-Japan Championships four times and became the first Canadian to have won the Kanto Championships, which is one of the biggest JKA tournaments in Japan featuring 8 prefectures. He came back to Canada in 2017 and is currently the Head Instructor of the Ottawa JKA dojo.
We continue to cultivate a close relationship with dojos from all over Canada and Japan in order to create opportunities for cultural exchange and development of Shotokan Karate in North America. In the future, we wish to organize memorable events, where participants can push themselves to the best of their ability and make lasting friendships.