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"The ultimate aim of karate lies not in victory or defeat but in the perfection of the character of  its participants." - Gichin Funakoshi


By no means are Tulane Karate Club (TKC) members expected to compete, though a minority of the members of the club choose to participate in several tournaments every year.  These experiences provide motivation to train harder, good learning opportunities to compete and interact with other karatekas for the purpose of self-improvement.  The tournament experience and knowledge gained by these members is then "shared" to some extent by all club members.   


  • Collegiate Regional:  The ASKF (All-South Karate Federation) collegiate competition is held once a year. The tournament site has rotated through several cities of the deep south, and since 2011 it has been held in New Orleans at the same time as the All-South Karate Championship.
  • Collegiate National:  As a member of the JKA, the ISKF had held for 30 years National Collegiate Championship in the US, together with the ISKF/JKA National Karate Championship, once a year, every Fall.  Before 2000, there was sporadic participation by Tulane students, though starting with the Nationals of 2000, the Tulane Karate Club sent yearly college teams till 2006, with excellent team results (4 golds, 4 silvers).  In terms of individual medals, many Tulane undergrads have placed in the ISKF/JKA National Collegiate Championship.  Among other successes, the club has gotten gold medals in the menís advanced sparring division of the 1996 [Devin Fadaol], 2001, 2002, 2003 and 2004 [Dimitri Papadopoulos] and menís advanced kata in 2003 [Dimitri].  Since 2008, JKA AF has been holding its own university national championships concurrently with its national tournament.
  • Regional:  The All-South Karate Championship is one of the oldest karate tournaments in the US, held annually since 1964, every spring (usually first weekend in April) at the University of New Orleans, and is open to all karate competitors of any style and organization.  In the black-belt divisions, there are routinely competitors who have previously won national and world titles spanning several organizations and styles.  This tournament had also been used to select the Southern Regional ASKF team that went to the ISKF/JKA Nationals until 2006.   Since the late 90's, several Tulane Karate Club members have been part of this team.  [As of mid 2007, the Tulane Karate Club is no longer a member club of the ISKF, as the latter has decided to separate itself from the Japan Karate Association].  The Tulane Karate Club has had excellent results in that tournament.
  • National:   Without disregarding the contribution of all-styles or different-styles competitions, the TKC considers JKA competitive events the most important and it is in these events that the club tries to participate as much as possible.  In November 2007, JKA WF America held its first Nationals in Phoenix, AZ, in 2008 its 2nd Nationals and both times a Tulane Karate Club member won the men's individual kumite;  (Dimitri in 2007 and Devin in 2008) in addition to other wins for the club (see tournament results).  JKA AF has been holding its own Nationals since 2009 and the individual men's kumite was won by Dimitri three times (2009, 2010, 2012).  It should be noted that until 2006, the ISKF held the US National Championship sanctioned by JKA.  As of mid-2007, the ISKF chose not to be part of the JKA, so the last participation of ASKF in ISKF competition was in the ISKF/JKA Nationals of 2006.  As part of the Southern Regional ASKF team, Tulane students helped the region win or place at Nationals several times.    As for individual successes, in the ISKF/JKA Nationals the club has gotten two Golds (2004 and 2006 men's kumite [Dimitri]), three Silvers (2000 men's kumite [Dimitri], 2002 men's kumite [Dimitri], 2006 women's kumite [Sharon Davidson]) and two Bronzes (2003 [Dimitri] and 2006 [Devin] men's kumite).   In the International Goodwill Tournament (held yearly in conjunction with MasterCamp in Camp Green Lane, PA) the club has gotten two Golds (men's kumite 2002 and 2004 [Dimitri]) one Silver (men's kumite 2005 [Devin]) and a Bronze (men's kata 2000 [Dimitri]).  In the past, our competitors participated and did well also in all-style organizations tournaments.  In 1994, in the National Championship of the USAKF, Devin won the Gold of the black-belt kumite division for the light weight division.   In 1998, Devin took third place in his WKF kilo division of the USANKF Nationals, and in 1999 he took SILVER in the same event, which automatically made him NKF National team member for those years.  In the 2003 AAU National Championships (North Carolina), Dimitri won the IPPON kumite division.  In 2004.  Dimitri won the open WKF division and got the BRONZE for that division, thus becoming member of the USANKF National Team for that year. 


  • International:   Club members are and/or have been members of various junior and adult USA National Teams since the early nineties.  These include teams of the USAKF, the USANKF, the AAU, and more recently and most importantly the ISKF/JKA.  Recent highlights, in reverse chronological order, are as follows:  
  • Dimitri, Sharon and Devin were on the US JKA combined team that competed at JKA's 13th Gichin Funakoshi World Cup, in Tokyo, in October 2014.

  • Devin and Dimitri were on the US JKA combined team that competed at JKA's 12th Gichin Funakoshi World Cup, in Thailand, in August 2011.

  • Based on their performance at the 2006 ISKF/JKA Nationals in Alaska, four club students (Devin, Dimitri, Ashlie and Sharon) were chosen for the ISKF National Team.  However, in mid-2007 ISKF separated itself from JKA, though Mikami-sensei and his organization chose to stay with JKA and thus separated from ISKF.

  • Three club members (Dimitri, Sharon and Devin) were members of the ISKF/SKD-I combined team that went to Sydney for JKA's Gishin Funakoshi 10th World Cup (Sydney, August 2006).  Dimitri earned 5th place (top 8)  in individual.

  • USA (ISKF and SKdA combined) men's kumite (sparring) National Team for the JKA 9th World Shotocup, September  22-23, 2004, Tokyo, Japan. Dimitri competed in team and individual kumite.  He earned 5th place (top 8)  in individual.

  • USA men's kumite National Team for the ISKF Pan-American Championship, held August 14-15, 2004 in Panama City, Panama  [Devin, Dimitri].  A third member on the US team was  Lane Nevils, past ISKF National Champion, several-times national-team member, chief instructor in Lafayette, LA, and a familiar face at TKC, visiting often to train or teach in our club.  The team won the GOLD

  • USA AAU kumite National Team sent to the 4th World WKC (World Karate Confederation) Championships, held in June  2003, St. Petersburg, Russia [Dimitri].  The team (John Fonseca, George Kotaka and Dimitri) won the GOLD medal, and in individual heavy-weight division Dimitri reached 5th place (top eight).

  • USA men's kumite team for the ISKF Pan-American Championship, held in June 2001, Philadelphia, PA  [Dimitri and Devin (alternate member)].  The team won GOLD.

  • In the mid-late nineties, Devin was member of the USANKF kumite National Team several times, and national kumite light-weight champion of the USAKF in 1994.  Dimitri, in his only USANKF national competition as a junior, in 1999 made the Junior National Team for both the World (1st place in the qualifiers) and the Pan American (2nd place in the qualifiers) junior championships, and also won the bronze for the 16-year-olds division.  Due to school obligations, neither of them was able to go to the WKF PanAm or World tournaments.  

  • In the 1998 JKA World Shotocup (Paris, France), Dimitri won the SILVER medal for the boys 15-year-olds kumite.



Dimitri and Pedram scoring in Philly (ISKF/JKA Nationals 2000)

[Click here for tournament report.]