The Founder

“Teaching someone how to fight is easy. The real challenge is teaching them how to be a martial artist!” Master Foster

Kenjute Founder - Master Joe Foster

          As a practitioner, Master Foster has formally trained in Judo, Jiu Jitsu, Shaolin Fist-Way Kung Fu, Chinese Kenpo, Tracy Kenpo, American Kenpo, Kanzen Kenpo, Traditional Weapons, Non-Traditional Weapons, Sport Karate, and Kenjute.  Over the last four decades Master Foster has also exchanged ideas with a plethora of black belts from different martial arts systems.  Master Foster had the privilege of learning from many excellent martial arts teachers.  His most famous teacher was the late American Kenpo Senior Grand Master Edmund Parker.  Master Foster trained privately at the Parker home in Pasadena California and, upon the Senior Grand Master's passing in 1990, represented the Parker family and International Kenpo Karate Association (IKKA) teaching around the world for a number of years.  Master Foster was responsible for introducing American Kenpo to Canada and was the only Canadian ever to be a personal student of Senior Grand Master Edmund Parker.

          As an athlete, Master Foster is a former black belt champion in weapons, forms, and fighting having won a sundry of championships in Canada, the United States, and Europe.  He also played numerous competitive sports at the high school and club levels (AAA hockey, baseball, football, track, badminton, basketball, and volleyball) winning many top athletic awards including being honoured as London’s first “SPECTRA Award” inductee (1980).

          As a teacher/coach/official, Master Foster has been professionally teaching martial arts since the 1970’s.  He has educated thousands of students of all ages and ranks through his school, demonstrations, seminars, written manuals, training videos, public venues, and guest appearances for other martial arts organizations.  Master Foster has taught and tested students from Austria, Belgium, Channel Islands, Canada, England, Germany, Greece, Holland, Ireland, Mexico, Spain, Sweden, and the United States.  He has also taught extensive defensive tactics skills to military personnel, security guards, and police officers - including his city's first police ERU (SWAT) team.  Master Foster's background in security work over the years (especially as a security manager in numerous bars) afforded him the opportunity to be in the middle of thousands of threatening situations and hundreds of physical confrontations.  Stabbings, a shooting, weapons takedowns, multiple attackers, and applying different techniques in varying environments have of all contributed to Master Foster's realistic approach to defensive tactics and the martial arts.  He has gained widespread experience as a referee, coordinator, arbitrator, and promoter attending hundreds of “open” martial arts competitions over the decades.  Under his guidance and expertise, countless personal students have also won championships at the regional, state, national, and international levels.  A graduate from the University of Western Ontario (1983), Master Foster has applied his degree in physical education to many aspects of Kenjute training.  Among the first wave of coaches to be certified through Canada’s National Coaching Certification Program (NCCP) in the early 1980’s, Master Foster also found time to coach a number of elementary school (track & field) and high school sports (volleyball & basketball) teams as well as at the “club level” (volleyball & basketball). 

          As a leader, Master Foster  has been a businessman/school owner for decades, former Canadian Director for the International Kenpo Karate Association, original charter member for the Worldwide Kenpo Karate Association, President of the World Kanzen Kenpo Federation, President of Kenjute International,  martial arts franchisor, international black belt examiner and lecturer, seminar host, tournament promoter, tournament official, security consultant, and supporter of over 25 different community groups and  charities (over $50,000 raised).  In his high school days he was both the Athletic Association President and Students Council President.  Master Foster has also been an actor, fight choreographer, and video producer.  

          As a martial arts professional, Master Foster has often been recognized for his martial arts involvement in a myriad of newspaper articles, radio, and television interviews.  Additionally, he has been featured in a number of martial arts magazines including; “Fighter International” (USA), “Inside Karate” (USA), “Sport Karate” (USA), “American Karate” (USA), “Black Belt” (USA), “Official Karate” (USA), “Svenska Fighter International” (Sweden), “Cinturon Negro” (Spain), and “Action Martial Arts” (Canada).  He received formal recognitions for his talents from his city’s mayor (Tom Gosnell), Premier of Ontario (David Peterson), Prime Minister of Canada (Brian Mulroney), and was a recipient of the “Outstanding Young Londoner” award in 1986.  

          For his martial arts prowess, pioneering, and vision,  Master Foster has been inducted ten times into seven different international martial arts organizations "Black Belt Halls Of Fame” including; Canadian Martial Arts Hall Of Fame (1988 - Toronto), Canadian Karate Hall Of Fame (Pioneer Award -1989 - Toronto), World Karate Union Black Belt Hall Of Fame Award (Master Instructor Of The Year - 1998 - New York), World Head Of Family Sokeship Council Black Belt International Hall Of Fame (Master Instructor Of The Year -1998 - Florida), World Head Of Family Sokeship Council Black Belt International Hall Of Fame (Founders Award - 2000 - Florida), USA International Black Belt Hall Of Fame (Master Instructor Of The Year - 2000 - Pennsylvania), World Kenpo & Martial Arts Federation International Black Belt Hall Of Fame (Master Instructor Of The Year - 2000 - England), United States Martial Arts Association Black Belt Hall Of Fame (Supreme Master Of The Year - 2001 – Maryland), EUSA Black Belt Hall Of Fame (Pinnacle Award Of Success - 2001 - Pennsylvania), and World Karate Union Black Belt Hall Of Fame (Grandmaster Of The Year/Kanzen Kenpo - 2004 - Pennsylvania).

          When comparing different martial arts founders, the credentials, experience, knowledge, ability, and creative work of Master Foster speak for themselves.