– We are new to ITKA, although I have known Sensei Bambouyani for quite some time. Our children are four and six years old and we’ve always intended, since they were born, to enroll them in a martial art. As they grew, we would see advertisements for different places through their school, walking and driving through the neighborhood, newspapers and magazines. To our dismay, it seemed that the main focus for many of these places was the color of your belt, or MMA style fighting, or worst of all, the money. There was no mention of what we felt was priority for our children:  knowledge. Knowledge in the sense of respect for others and for self; when it is appropriate to use what they learn in Karate; self-discipline; mental and physical strength; and the idea of ‘Kaizen’ or self-improvement. We all want what is best for our kids and these are a few of the reasons why we chose to bring our children to ITKA.

The word ‘family’ is easily said, but Sensei Bambouyani and ITKA exemplify the idea of family.  Caring for each other; teaching and encouraging each other; and most importantly: respecting each other. You can see it in the people that come to ITKA: adults and children, white belts to black belts, everyone from all walks of life. As many know, it is what is inside that matters most, and despite the beautiful new environment that Sensie Bambouyani has created here at ITKA, it is what happens ‘inside’ what brings us back. Thank you Sensei and from parents, the best compliment they can give is to entrust their children to your care.

Gary and Sandra Yamashiroya

Commander Gary Yamashiroya formerly Detective Commander Bureau of Detectives – Area North Chicago Police Department