Scott Shamblin

Master Scott Shamblin Ku-dan (9th degree black belt) began his training in Isshin‑ryu karate on November 17, 1973, under the instruction of Master J.C. Burris in Athens, Tennessee. His study continued with Master Angi Uezu, first in 1987 in Fredericksburg, Virginia, then in 1993 as Mr. Shamblin traveled to and trained in Okinawa, and again in 1994 in Cleveland, TN. Mr. Shamblin was also a long-time student of the late Allen Wheeler of Powell, TN and was named by Master Wheeler, before his passing, as his successor.

In competition he was the first person at the Isshin‑ryu Hall of Fame Tournament to ever win first place in Weapons, Kata, and Kumite as well as Grand Champion in Kata, Weapons and Kumite. Mr. Shamblin was the youngest black belt to win the Kata Grand Championship at the Battle of Nashville. He was the overall champion in weapons, Kata, and Kumite for the Tennessee Karate Circuit in 1990. At the 1999 A.A.U. Nationals, he received the bronze medal for Kata, silver for weapons, and brought home the gold for fighting. He was undefeated in fighting in 1999 at the state, regional, and national levels.

Notable Awards:

  • 1974 Isshin‑ryu Junior Championships held at the Knoxville Civic Coliseum.
  • 1975 IIKA Junior Advanced Free fighting Champion,
  • 1980 IHOF Karate Ka of the Year: (First IHOF Karate Ka of the Year.)
  • 1981 IIKA Championships Grand Champion,
  • 1982 IHOF Tournament Grand Champion,
  • 1988 OKU Outstanding Achievement Award (with his wife Ruth Ann),
  • 1990 OKU Outstanding Achievement Award (with Ruth Ann),
  • 1990 Included as a member of the United States Sport Jujitsu Team,
  • 1990 Silver & Bronze medal – World Sport Jujitsu Championships,
  • 1990 Tennessee Karate Circuit – Overall Grand Champion – Kata, Kumite &
  • 1991 Inducted into World Martial Arts Hall of Fame – Male Fighter of the
  • 1994 OKU Master Shimabuku Award (with Ruth Ann),
  • 1998 Appointed President of the Okinawan Karate Do Union (OKU),
  • 1999 National A.A.U. Kumite Champion (30 – 39 yr. old male),
  • 2005 Inducted into the Isshin‑ryu Hall of Fame (IHOF),
  • 2010 IIKA Legacy Circle of Honor.
  • 2015 Appointed President of the Isshin‑ryu Hall of Fame (IHOF),
  • 2016 Inducted (with Ruth Ann) into the Traditional Okinawan Karate Association Hall of Fame (TOKA).
  • 2023 Appointed President of the International Isshin‑ryu Karate Association (IIKA).

Outside the competitive arena, Mr. Shamblin and wife Ruth Ann had the honor of participating in the Isshin‑ryu Karate demonstration, lead by Master Angi Uezu, during the Restoration Festival of Shuri Castle in Shuri, Okinawa. Mr. and Mrs. Shamblin taught the Cleveland State Karate Program (credit and non-credit classes) and owned and operated Shamblins’ School of Karate in Cleveland, TN from 1990 to 2009. During that time, they hosted the Cleveland Karate Challenge open tournament for several years.

As an instructor, Mr. Shamblin believes in strong Isshin‑ryu basics and practical applications of kata movements. His other studies have included Torite‑Jitsu, Sport Jujitsu, Tae Kwon Do, and Tai Chi Chuan. Shamblin believes in being a student of the martial arts and studying them in depth to help with his understanding of Isshin‑ryu, but never to replace it. It is his firm belief that Isshin‑ryu Karate is a complete system of self-defense, and that if you truly understand it, you do not have to embellish it.

Shamblin currently serves as President of the International Isshin‑ryu Karate Association (IIKA), secretary/treasurer for the Traditional Okinawan Karate Association (TOKA), and President of the Isshin‑ryu Hall of Fame (IHOF). He also served as past President of the Okinawan Karate-do Union (OKU).

To earn his rank, Mr. Shamblin provides lessons to advanced students, instructors, and dojo owners. He serves as advisor to the Bryan College Martial Arts Academy (BCMAA) karate program in Dayton, TN and teaches the Kobudo Instructor Certification courses for the IIKA. Mr. Shamblin lives in Ocoee, Tennessee with his wife Ruth Ann (8th degree black belt).