Soke Crando (Kazuo) Saito - Chief Instructor

Tameshigiri Iaido Katana 2015-5-18-22:2:15

Crando Kazuo Saito has had extensive experience in countless martial arts since 1957 and is currently the highest ranking 10th Dan Karate Master in Australia. His passion to empower others, over half a century of dedication and positive mindset is something all our students aspire to.


His credentials include:

  • 16th Grandmaster of Igaryu Ninjutsu

  • 10th Dan Soke of Goju-Ryu Karate-Do

  • 7th Dan Shintoryu Iai-Do

  • Black belt Aiki-Jujitsu

  • 8th Dan Sports Chanbara (Australian President)

  • 8th Dan Tameshigiri Iaido

  • Shingon Buddhist Abbott under Koyasan Japan

Some of the iconic masters that Soke Saito has studied with are:

  • Seiko Fujita (14th Soke-Koga Ryu Ninjustu)

  • Heishichiro Okuse (15th Soke-Iga Ryu Ninjutsu)

  • Gogen Yamaguchi (Goju Kai)

  • Shuji Tasaki (Goju Ryu Seiwa Kai)

  • Gonnohye Yamamoto (Goju Ryu I.K.O.)

  • Akio Takahashi (Goju Ryu Kenwa Kai)

  • Takeshi Mochizuki (Shinto Ryu Iai Batto Jutsu and Isshin Ryu Aiki Ju Jutsu)

  • Tetsundo Tanabe (Tameshigiri Iaido and Chanbara)


In 1995 Soke Saito was awarded Blitz Magazine Hall of Fame Ninjutsu Instructor of the year.


Soke Saito has also dedicated a large amount of time to the study of various schools of Japanese Buddhism and currently is Ajari (Abbott) of Koyasan Shingon-Shu.





Sensei Saito's Karate Biography


Crando Kazuo Saito grew up in the rough area of Senzoku, Asakusa, which was dominated by the Yakuza (Japanese gangsters) during late World War II. Self defence was vital to survive with daily crime and violence. Saito began his Goju Ryu Karate training at 3 years of age when his mother took him to Gogen Yamaguchi Sensei's dojo, but was rejected as he was too young of age. Saito attended the rough Senzoku Primary School. This is where he learnt basic karate movements from his older brother's friends, Kobayashi and Ounishi Sensei, students of the late Gogen Yamaguchi Sensei. Saito attended these lessons until he was in Junior High School, aged 15.


After High School, Saito first began to train under Gogen Yamaguchi Sensei in Yushima Ueno Dojo when he was in his late teens. The training involved intense full contact fighting, including groin kicks. These training sessions lasted 2 hours and classes were almost every day of the week.


Gogen Yamaguchi Sensei relocated his Headquarters Dojo to Zenpukuji Ogikubo Suginami, Tokyo in 1968. Saito continued to train under Gogen Yamaguchi Sensei while serving as a translator for Yamaguchi Sensei between foreigners. Saito met many American, Australian and English karate practitioners, including Tino Cebrano Sensei from Australia. Gogen Yamaguchi's number one student, Shuuji Tasaki sensei, left Gogen Yamaguchi Sensei's Dojo in 1970, and many of Gogen Yamaguchi's students such as Akio Takahashi sensei, left and followed Shuuji Tasaki Sensei, including Saito.  Shuuji Tasaki founded his own Karate organisation, called Seiwakai. Saito continued to train with Seiwakai and Yamaguchi Sensei's Dojo and was offered to come to Australia under the sponsorship of his friend, Tino Sebrano sensei.


Saito migrated to Australia in March 1978 with permanent residency as a Karate Instructor from a letter of recommendation from Tasaki Sensei. However, while teaching Karate in Australia under Seiwakai for 5 years, Saito decided to resign from Seiwakai to create his own school, Shinbukan.

In 1978, Saito founded his own school called Shinbukan and received 10th Dan Hanshi on the 1st of June 2013 from Yamamoto Gonnohyoue Sensei, 10th dan Hanshi, a student of the late Yamaguchi Sensei.

In his time, he studied and trained with different martial arts discipline such as Kyokushin, kickboxing, boxing, Muay Thai, Judo and Jujitsu. His heart and passion lies in Karate and Ninjutsu and aims to teach the true essence of both disciplines without the dilution of commercialisation and sportification.