WJKA  the  Netherlands






Shihan Jan G. Knobel
9.Dan WJKA
President / Co-Founder  WJKA



Autobiography Sensei Jan Knobel - 9th Dan

    Born May 30th 1950, married and father of 3 sons. Went working on a cruise ship when he was 18 and visited many times the USA, what he still
     finds his favorite country. This resulted in a 3-week motorcycle trip at the West coast during his 25th wedding anniversary.
     After his sailing period and after getting married to his wife Hanny, he went searching for something to do during the evening times. After seeing
     him play soccer, his father, former soccer coach of Ajax Amsterdam and the Dutch National Soccer team, advised him to hang his shoes to the
     tree because to his opinion: "He could not crash an egg with his feet". So he did and he went to practice karate.
     His first foreign teacher was sensei Miyazaki and his assistant Sawada. They made such a big impression on him that Jan committed himself fully
     to Karate. It started for him as a hobby and became a lifestyle and his living. After a period of teaching karate at a local sports school, Jan
     started his own dojo in 1983. The dojo was and still is called UMO, meaning feather.
     This crest was a description of Jan's character and lifestyle, done by his former Japanese teacher sensei Miyazaki, who has passed away. He
     thought the feather in the air is swift and uncontrolled, attached to an arrow the feather directs and controls the arrow. This he thought Jan's
     character was, happy and fun but straight to the point and honest. Jan himself thought this a great honor sensei Miyazaki described him this
     Jan practiced karate in those early days with senseiís as Nakayama, Kase, Enoeda, Shirai, Ochi, Asai, Yahara, Abe.  Sensei Abe he met in 1985
     during his first visit to Japan. He practiced with sensei Abe during the Gaijin class for several weeks. At that time entering the JKA instructors
     class or training with the JKA Instructors class was impossible.
     In the early days Jan had a lot of success during competitions. Several times Dutch champion, individual and team. Especially in his specialty
     Kata . In 1993 he transferred from the National Organization to his old love the JKA. He was sick and tired of politics and only wanted to practice
     and enjoy karate his way. Also the national organization was an all style organization and being so left a little room for traditional Karate. So he
     went to the JKA Asai fraction and stayed there until the last split. During his stay with sensei Asai he met sensei Amos and since then always
     stayed in contact with him. Jan developed his Karate under Asai sensei and became more exited. He still wanted to compete and he became
     European champion, 2nd in Johannesburg during the World Championships 1993 and World champion in Greece 1996. This, in his eyes
     completed his Karate and he devoted himself to coaching his sons and the rest of his team. Until now the successes are hardly to count, several
     European champions, high scores during World championships, several 1st - 2nd and 3rd places. Being independent, after the Asai split, Jan and
     his team competed with all kinds of organizations. He thought of himself as a Ronin, a samurai without a master. He kept contact with all those
     organizations and finally founded the WJKA, a traditional organization which was and still is in Janís blood.
     Nowadays Jan shares his time between his dojo and courses he is giving throughout Europe.
     He is a well seen instructor in the Balkan countries and due to his efforts these Karatekaís are now able to travel throughout Europe to compete
     in several competitions.
     Although he is a very busy man Jan still finds some time for his hobbies: speed cycling with his 86 year old father who still has a perfect
     condition. During these daily trips they share their knowledge about their sport and Jan uses this knowledge to develop his Karate. Jan likes to
     workout alone in his dojo and likes driving through the country on his motorbike with his wife Hanny.



     Born - 30 mei 1950 in Roosendaal, the Netherlands

     Profession - Karate Instructor

     Started karate in 1973

     Grade 8. Dan WJKA-WUKO

     President JKA the Netherlands.

     Chief Technical Director JKA the Netherlands.

     Founder of the World JKA Karate Alliance.

     Founder of Karate dojo Umo Jan Knobel

     World Champion JKA 1996 - Greece

     European Champion JKA 1997 - Netherlands

     World Champion WJKA 2007 - Netherlands




     Amongst countless students sensei Knobel educated numerous well known Dutch instructors such as:

     * Jan Knobel jr. - Karate dojo Umo Jan Knobel

     * Gerrie van Tilburg - Karate do Ac. Itosu

     * Otto & Coen Bakker & Eugene van Meel - Karate dojo Tamashii

     * Richard Pluijgers - Karate dojo JKA Zeeland

     * Ad Filius & Wouter Meedendorp - Karate dojo Vlissingen

     * Robin Huijer & Parastu Zahib - Karate dojo Archida

     * Conny Voermans, Kees Langenberg, Martin Michels & Ed Koevoets Karate dojo San

     * Marco de Vries - Shin Gi Tai Karate - Oudenbosch

     * Murat Atesyurek - Karate dojo Atesyurek