Looking at Illinois Shotokan Karate Clubs, you’d never know that this thriving dojo of 7,000 students, all began in the small space of a young man’s basement. Unlike most adolescent boys who turn to football, baseball or other traditional American sports to fill their free time, John DiPasquale developed a love for martial arts.
He began taking karate lessons at a small dojo in Des Plaines with Loren Rodgers at the age of 13. As DiPasquale grew, so did his passion for karate. He realized he wanted karate to be more than just a hobby; he wanted to make into a career.
In 1978, DiPasquale created his own karate dojo. Since then, the club has expanded to serve more than 75 park districts throughout the Chicagoland area. Students of all ages and abilities are welcome at ISKC.
The club offers weekly classes taught by a variety of knowledgeable instructors, as well as opportunities to belt test and compete in tournaments.
Belt exams occur twice a year, and allow students to advance in rank. Progressing to a higher belt rank requires a discernible improvement in one's skills over the course of 6 - 12 months.
Additionally, the club hosts four local tournaments each year along with opportunities to compete at national and international tournaments. ISKC is known for their quality competitors and excellent coaching. In 2013, the club had 28 athletes represent Team USA at the World Shotokan Karate Championships.
DiPasquale is a four-time National Champion and former United States Team Coach. Sensei DiPasquale was the only actively teaching karate coach in the country to have been named to the 27 member national faculty of the American Coaching Effectiveness Program (ACEP).
However, the benefits of karate go far beyond competition, they reach into every aspect of our lives. By its nature, karate promotes self-discipline, confidence, coordination, fitness and a sense of satisfaction and well-being.
ISKC is proud to offer our karate program, one that is a proven leader in its field. You can feel confident that you and/or your child will be getting the best the sport has to offer.