Meet Shihan

Shihan R Young

Chief instructor of the Torakan Dojo


With over a 120 year martial arts family linage Shihan (Professor) Young leads the training in a comprehensive, progressive, and scientific manner.  Shihan Young is one of the most respected and highly skilled teachers today, with such achievements as holding two national professional titles in the boxing and kick boxing ring.  He has also been awarded the rare honor, rank and title of Shihan by the Japanese Ministry of Education.

Under the instruction of his Sensei Takashi Furakawa in the early 80’s, the Shihan was one of only 25 ranked black belts in the world to ever complete the Kyokushin 100 man fight contest.

shihancollageShihan Young’s jujitsu training is more commonly recognized as Brazilian JuJitsu (BJJ).  The Shihan’s study of jujitsu began in his childhood.  It was a family tradition far before it became popular in the UFC, and even before the UFC was created.

The Shihan has dedicated his life to the pursuit of truth in the martial sciences by avoiding the pitfalls of politics, and bogus organizations.  Shihan Young feels it is every true martial artist duty to shine a spot light on, call out the sensationalist phony’s and their disgraceful commercialism of the arts. These charlatans bring shame and disgrace to true meaning of black belt and to the art itself.

One cannot teach combat unless one has lived in combat.

His overall view of the martial sciences is that they should continue to evolve and develop to remain effective and relevant to today’s environment. Many styles have become stagnated and cluttered with politics, or become a money making scheme. Stagnation results in death of all things so we must adopt a scientific approach and mind, continuing to challenge our science to find truth and impart this to our students.

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Once a student has been accepted into our dojo it is my duty to my family’s honor and the science first and foremost to train them and test them under the highest unyielding standards to ensure the quality and evolution of the science and art for future generations to come. The belt is merely a book mark for the teacher to know at a glance the level a student should perform and nothing more.  Any who would not want, or expect this, is not worthy of being called a student of the Torakan. I and my fellow instructors welcome all and take a very personal pride in each one as they are a living representation of our own honor and dedication to the science and way of life. For one day they may wear a belt bearing our name.

-Shihan Young