Find out more about Bristol Karate Academy


Bristol Karate Academy is formed by four separate clubs, coming together under one banner to help people within the Bristol postcode area become outstanding at Karate — whether they are interested in understanding the art or competing at the highest level.

Karate is a system of self defence originally developed and refined in Okinawa and Japan. We teach the Shotokan style of Karate (the most widely practiced in the world) and are affiliated to Japan Karate Shoto Federation — an association regarded in high esteem across the globe. Our instructors (or 'Senseis') have trained with some of the best practitioners in the UK and world so that they can bring these teachings — together with their own skills — directly to you.

The training at Bristol Karate Academy promotes good overall health, fitness and well-being for both adults and children. The concentration, commitment and dedication required can help you or your child to build a strong, confident and determined character.

Our heritage

Bristol Karate Academy has had roots in the area for a long time. Three of its four core instructors were born in Bristol and all have a passion for the area and for making it a centre of excellence for Traditional Shotokan Karate. The oldest dojo in the Academy opened its doors forty years ago in 1978, while the newest dojo opens its doors in September 2018. The one thing they have in common is the aim of bringing the highest standard of Traditional Japanese Karate to the people of Bristol.

Our motto

Bristol Karate Academy takes its motto, "Virtute et industria" — or by virtue and industry — from the city of Bristol, which dates back to at least 1569. The motto reflects the values of the club and fit hand in glove with the core values of traditional Karate-Do.

The Japanese calligraphy (kanji) in our logo and in brushwork on the right-hand side of this page show this translated. The first two characters say Bitoku (virtue) and the next two translate as Benrei (industry). Because each character can carry multiple meanings, the characters for industry also represent diligent study, alertness, encouragement and application of oneself. Perfect for the Academy.

So what does that mean for us?

Virtue (美徳): We have integrity, in our commitment to traditional, effective Karate and integrity in the way that we treat others. We are respectful, fair and aim for high moral standards. We build character, strive for excellence and show courage in the face of challenges.

Industry (勉励): We work hard to reach our goals. We're diligent and determined to get better at every single training session. We are rigorous in our approach to improvement and dedicated to our own and each other's development.

Through hard, honest training we become our best possible selves.

Our classes

We train five times a week across our venues. For details of the training times available for each venue, go to our venues page.

Many of our classes are for mixed ages and abilities, meaning they're perfect for both individuals and families alike. While most of our classes are for anyone aged 7 upwards, for children aged 5-7 we hold separate 12 week introductory courses. Visit the Bushido Warriors page to find out when the next course starts.

Overall, the emphasis is on your own personal development and helping you to reach your goals. When you start and at regular intervals we'll ask you what you want to get out of your training at Bristol Karate Academy: whether it's reaching your next belt, competing in a tournament or simply keeping fit while learning a traditional martial art.

Virtute et Industria

Our Team

With over 120 years of karate experience between them, our senseis are all DBS (CRB) checked, first aid trained and qualified black belt instructors. Find out more about each of them below.

Our team of instructors