Blast from the Past
Don’t take defeat sitting down.
Download a PDF of an article about the “new” Full-Contact Karate craze from the 1975 OK Karate Magazine Annual.
“Will the medicine used to keep Sport Karate alive be the one that kills it?”
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In 1979, the original Official Karate TM magazine published its 10 Year Anniversary Yearbook. It contained a special section on the karate icons of the day. Interestingly, it included three of the men inducted into the Karate Masters Hall of Fame TM in 2011, Allen Steen, Jim Harrison and Joe Corley. If you didn’t know, Official Karate TM is an official sponsor of the Hall of Fame.
Grandmaster Steen is known as the “Father of Texas Blood and Guts Karate.” He beat Joe Lewis and Chuck Norris back to back to win Ed Parker’s 1962 International Karate Championships in Long Beach California. He went on to establish a wide reaching martial arts business with schools across Texas and even internationally.
Jim Harrison was called, “the meanest man alive” by none other than Bruce Lee. A champion black belt in both karate and judo, he won almost every major title in the mid 1960s to early 1970s. A former special forces police officer on the mean streets of Kansas City (maybe that’s how he got so mean) Grandmaster Harrison started his own realistic combat system and taught all around the world.
Joe Corley may be best known for establishing the Battle of Atlanta, for decades one of the most prestigious tournaments in the country, but he was also a feared competitor himself in the early days of sport karate. He was a pioneer in not only point karate but in full-contact and professional kick-boxing. The MMA of today owes it existence to innovators such as Grandmaster Corley.