Sensei Brian W. Bulow began his study of martial arts in 1994, and was awarded his 1st degree black belt in 1999. Also in 1999, he began training in Shorin-Ryu (Kobayashi) under the direction of Kyoshi Eberhard G. Welch, Hachidan (8th degree black belt, also referred to as 8th Dan). Since training with Kyoshi Welch, Sensei Bulow has been promoted to the black belt rank of Yondan (4th Dan) in karate-do and Sandan (3rd Dan) in Kobudo, the study of weapons. He is a member of one of the largest Shorin-Ryu associations in the world, Shorinkan, located in Okinawa, the birthplace of karate. Sensei Bulow continues to train with Kyoshi Welch, travels to his dojo (training hall) in Maryland at least four or more times a year. Sensei participates in camps and workshops held around the country. He also travels to Okinawa to train under the supervision of the head of the Shorinkan association.
The Shorin-Ryu Karate Club of Raleigh (SKCOR) was founded in November of 2008. Its purpose is to provide affordable, quality, traditional martial arts instruction in a Christian environment. In 2012, the dojo moved to the Litchford Village shopping center and was renamed to the Traditional Shorin-Ryu Karate-Do of Raleigh (TSKOR). Effective November 2, 2016 the dojo will relocate to the Body of Christ Church Dream Center. Classes are available to tiny tots (5–6), youth (7–14), and adults (15 and over). Classes for each group are offered for each experience range, beginner, intermediate, and advanced.
Adult classes are an average of 90 minutes in length. Youth classes are 60 minutes and tiny tots are 30 minutes. Students receive daily feedback on their progress and areas needing improvement. Students above the rank of yellow belt are required to participate in at least three tournaments a year to further test their competency, to meet practitioners outside of their dojo, to be exposed to other styles of martial arts, and to build their self-esteem.
On September 5th, 2017 a second location was opened. While the Traditional Shorin-Ryu Karate-Do of Raleigh remains at the BOCC Dream Center, the Shorin-Ryu Karate Club of Raleigh is offering classes at the Southeast Raleigh Community Learning Center (SERCLC). Classes are available for tiny tots (5-6) and youth 7-12). Tiny Tot classes are 30 minutes and youth classes are 45 minutes. Classes at the new location are primarily offered to participants of the SERCLC program.
We teach Okinawan Shorin-Ryu of the Kobayashi system. Shorin-Ryu is a style of karate that uses the movement and flow of the natural body. Okinawan Shorin-Ryu karate is adaptable, and includes boxer and street fighter techniques, and can be used for tournament competition.
In addition to the traditional classic forms of Okinawan Shorin-Ryu, we teach Yakusoku Kumite (pre-arranged fighting techniques), Ippon Kumite (self-defense), Yotsu-Kado No Renshu (4-corner drills). We also train in traditional Okinawan weapons, such as Bo, Nunchaku, Kama, Tonfa, Sai and Eku. We place heavy emphasis on conditioning and stretching for all Karate activities.