The Very First Karate Rank Certificate It was Gichin Funakoshi, the “Father of Modern Karate,” who awarded Karate’s first black belt dan upon seven men. The recipients included Hironori Ohtsuka, founder of Wado-ryu Karatedo, Shinken Gima, later of Gima-ha Shoto-ryu, Ante Tokuda (Gima’s cousin), Kasuya, Akiba, Shimizu, and Hirose. This was a highly personal yet formal ceremony in which Funakoshi is said to have handed out lengths of black belting and a hand-brushed menjo (diploma) to each of his pupils. The Origins of Martial Arts Certificate Borders Design Receiving a new belt with each advanced rank is only part of what makes the event so momentous. A martial arts certificate,
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