Biography of Shihan Otto Johnson

Shihan Otto JohnsonShihan Otto Johnson began his study of Wado-Ryu Karate-Do 30 years ago under the tutelage of Hanshi Toshio Osako Shihan. Osako is a three-time All Japan Karate Champion and coach at "the renowned and feared" Nichi-Dai University of Tokyo in Japan. Shihan Johnson is a graduate of the Karate Instructors Training Program at Nihon University, under Toshio Osaka Shihan.

Shihan Otto Johnson Promoted to 9th Dan In American Wado Ryu

Osaka instructed Johnson personally for the World Wado-Ryu Karate Championships held in the Budokan in Tokyo, Japan and International Karate Championships held in Osaka, Japan in 1979. Johnson won both gold medals. He is a former World International Karate Champion and the first African-American to ever accomplish this feat.

Shihan Johnson's home dojo is in San Bernardino, California. He trains many law enforcement personnel, including those in the Los Angeles Police Department (L.A.P.D.), Salt Lake Sheriff's, Salt Lake City Police (special tactics personnel), Department of Parole and Corrections personnel (California).

He has served as a coach to many local, regional, national, and international champions. He is a 5th level World Karate Federation (WKF) licensed referee and is qualified in law enforcement martial arts. He is in constant demand for his seminars and personal lessons.



  • 1995 - 1998 Team Coach to 3 Silver Medal Teams in Arizona Wado Sport Karate Championship, sponsored by Marlin Moore and Ray Hughes in Arizona, Coach and Competitor
  • 1995 - 1996 Silver Medalist, United States Wado Karate Federation Tournament
  • 1996 - Silver Medalist Team, Fumio Demura's Japan Expo Karate Tournament
  • 1996 - Coach of the Silver Medalist Team, Fumio Demura's Japan Karate Tournament
  • 1979 - International Karate Champion - Budokan, Tokyo, Japan
  • 1979 - Outstanding Karate Player - World Wado-Ryu Karate-do - Budokan, Tokyo, Japan
  • 1979 - Outstanding Karate Player - Utah Open
  • 1979 - 3rd Place Weapons, Utah Open

Videos / Movies / Television

  • Appeared in movie "Little Bigfoot", directed by Art Camacho, 1996
  • Featured on numerous television documentaries, "Sports Talk Television Show" in San Bernardino, "Today Show" (NBC), featured on all major networks, including ABC, NBC, CBS, and several cable stations
  • Star of 6 videos
  • Producer of 3 videos

Books / Magazines

  • Featured on the cover of Black Belt Video Magazine, 2000
  • Featured on the cover of Karate Star Magazine, 1998
  • Author of 2 books: "American Wado Manual" and soon to be published "New Testament to Living for Wado Karate", by Shihan Otto Johnson, 7th Dan, Karate-do, Wado-Ryu Karate


  • Demonstrator for many famous celebrities, including bodyguard work for people such as Hector 'Macho' Camacho.
  • Presentor of over 75 seminars worldwide
  • Affiliated dojos worldwide


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