Welcome to the Kenshokan dojo's Karate web page.  Here you will find information about the Karate of the Zendokan Dharma Kumiai offered through the Kenshokan dojo.


Jim Wilson

  Jim Wilson (7th dan karate) is the instructor at the Kenshokan club.  Jim has trained in ZDK Karate for over 35 years, studying directly under the style's founder, the late Michael Kelly, for 17 years until Mr. Kelly's passing.  Other instructors include Sakima B., Leif T., Lewis B., and Omar B.

Jim is also a 6th dan in Iaido, teaching this Japanese sword art in addition to ZDK Karate.


We are a part of the Zendokan Dharma Kumiai group of clubs.  This is one of the oldest established Karate groups in Canada, having been started in 1959 first as Shotokan Dharma and then transforming into the Zendokan Dharma Kumiai around 1970.  We have existed for over 50 years with very little advertising, though thousands of people have  trained in the style. 

The style was started by Michael E. Kelly who had studied Karate and Judo after returning from WWII.  Although he never intended to start teaching Karate, people demanded it and the club started from there.

Today, the style is still practiced by individuals at various clubs across Canada with many off-shoot schools from the main tree.

Michael Kelly


In Japanese, the term "kensho" literally means "seeing nature" while "kan" means "house" or "place of".  Kensho is the seeing of  the true nature of things, of oneself, and hence is a transformative experience.  At the Kenshokan dojo, we believe that the martial arts can help lead to an understanding of the self and assist in the betterment of the individual - physically, mentally, and spiritually.  This insight into the essence of the self was stressed by many Zen priests of Japan, including the great Hakuin (1686-1769), a man of caustic wit who maintained that the "eye of kensho" was imperative to self-growth.




Jim Wilson (highlighted) as a senior brown belt.

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