World Black Belt Founding Members

Shihan Tabura

Shihan Tabura

"It is our responsibility to help the future and pass on our knowledge for the greater gain of all. I am very proud to be a part of WorldBlackBelt."

Born and raised in Hawaii, Shihan Tabura began his martial arts training under his cousin’s tutelage in a backyard dojo. Later moving to Southern California, Ted discovered the Okinawa-te dojo headed by another Hawaii-born instructor, Shihan Gordon Diversola. While training at the Okinawa-te dojo, Tabura met John Louis (now deceased) who became his final instructor in Okinawa-te, then LimaLama. Sensei Louis ranked Tabura as a Black Belt in 1968.

The martial arts has been a way of life for Tabura and his family. There were many years of tournament competition where Tabura and his sons won trophies in their respective divisions. Tabura was dubbed ‘The Sickle Man’ by Sijo Adriano Emperado, founder of Kajukenbo, for his expertise in the use of the Japanese kama (sickles). That nickname stuck with Shihan Tabura for many years.

Today, Shihan Tabura co-produces tournaments in Primm, Nevada and directs the annual Festival of the Kings Karate Championship in Maui, Hawaii. Shihan Tabura and Shihan Dan Sawyer have been partners of the Primm, Nevada tournaments for the past 18 years. They started out at Don Laughlin’s Riverside Resort Casino in the late 1980’s and just recently moved to Primm. This tournament draws competitors from all the neighboring regions including Mexico. The 10th Festival of the Kings Karate Championship was held in July 2002 at the Westin Maui Resort. Competitors came from far and wide; some as far as New Zealand and Australia.

Current Rank:

8th Degree Black Belt – LimaLama System Founder – Grandmaster Tino Tuiolosega 9th Degree Black Belt – Kajukenbo System Founder – Sijo Adriano Emperado


10th Degree Black Belt – Black Belt Society Grandmaster Robert Hoe Pioneer Award – Soke Black Belt Hall of Fame Pioneer Award – Pacific Rim Tour Organization Golden Fist Award – Outstanding Weapons Competitor


Black Belt Magazine; Karate Illustrated; Official Karate; Inside Kung-Fu; Combat Magazine

Training Videos:

LimaLama – Panther Productions

Boken/Kubudo – Black Belt Masters


Big Trouble in Little China, Little Ninjas, Hardcore/Greatest American Hero, Knight Rider

If you would like to contact Shihan Ted Tabura you can reach him at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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