JKA Boston's chief instructor, Eiji Toryu, is 6th Dan (6th degree black belt) and an internationally recognized and certified instructor for the Japan Karate Association and Shotokan Karate-Do International. With over 40 years of training in Japanese martial arts, Sensei Toryu brings to the club the traditions of karate discipline and honor.
Sensei Toryu is a two-time ITKF national kumite champion (1984 & 1987). In 2011 and 2014, he was a coach for the World Cup U.S. Team.
Sensei Toryu was born on Shikoku, the smallest of Japan's four main islands. His first martial art was Judo, in which he has a first degree black belt. He came to the United States after graduating from Reitaku University, and has been teaching at JKA Boston since 1981.
Meaning "four countries," the island was unified and dominated by the Hosokawa in the 14th century. Hideyoshi defeated the feudal families and the land was redistributed among different families who held it until the Meiji restoration in 1868.
With 88 temples, Shikoku draws pilgrims who may spend up to two months traveling by foot to each of the temples, taking part in the many religious festivals along the way. Shikoku is covered by mountains (Mount Ishizuchi is the highest peak at roughly 6500 ft or 1981 meters) and the southern coast of the island is among the more beautiful sites in Japan. Shikoku was listed as number 35 in the The New York Times 52 Places to Go in 2015.