SENSEI DARRELL CRAIG
In 1956 while assigned to the Third Marine Division in Yokuska, Japan, Mr. Craig received his initiation into the martial arts. He began his career of study with the art of karate under Master Gogen Yamaguchi of the Goju School. It was during this initial period of study that he developed an intense personal interest in the philosophical, cultural and historical foundations of a discipline that can be most closely described by the term 'art'. However, its substance has no true equivalent in western culture, His interest in this foundation has contributed most significantly to his continuation of study and advancement.
Transferred to Okinawa in 1958, Mr. Craig was afforded the opportunity to study under Sensei Z. Shimabuku. In Okinawa Mr. Craig furthered his study of Karate and began a study of Okinawan weapons, a style of weaponry historically unique to that island.
Upon discharge from the U.S. Marine Corp, Mr. Craig enrolled at Arlington State University. Taking a B.S., degree in business, he then moved to Houston, where, for the last two decades, he has channeled his interests into several of the disciplines which comprise the classic Martial Arts of Japan.
As self-defense instructor for the Houston Police Department, Mr. Craig has received commendations from the Houston S.W.A.T Division for distinguished meritorious service..
He is the author of Iai-Jutsu : The Art of Japanese Swordsmanship and Iai-jitsu : Center of the Circle both out of print but still available in some shops and collections. Mr. Craig's books currently in print are IAI The Art of Drawing the Sword also Japan's Ultimate Martial Art: Ju Jutsu Before 1882, and Heart of Kendo, SHIHAN-Te The Bunkai of Karate Kata and novels .
Mr. Craig received the highest recognition in his career in 1973, when he was awarded the title of Renshi Shihan or 'Master Teacher'. Shihan is the historical title of the army of the feudal warlords and has been retained as a term of great respect in modern Japan. The title has been bestowed on very few Westerners.
In 2001 during a trip to Japan Renshi Shihan Craig received a Shogo Title promotion to "Kyoshi" An advanced teaching title and rank used in the traditional martial arts and ways. A Kyoshi Shihan is considered equal to a Sixth to Eighth Dan.
The Houston Budokan Dojo officially closed in 2017 when Renshi Shihan Craig retired to travel and devote more time to his writings. After his retirement, Mr. Craig has continued to be active in the martial arts community around the world.