Like any expatriate, V. A. Mohamed Iqbal, hailing from India, landed in UAE in 1979, looking for fresh opportunities. All he had was a black belt (Shodan) and 2 years of teaching (more than 120 students) experience in India, and most importantly a vision - to introduce and propagate the Shorin-Ryu Seibukan style of Karate in the UAE.
At that time, Karate was taught only to the police and defense personnel. Due to this, repeated requests for permissions to run a dojo were turned down. Eventually, his relentless efforts with his elder brother Renshi Najeem, and hard work led to the establishment of the Aziz Ahmed Technical Sports Centre the first dojo of International Shorin-Ryu Seibukan Karate Do, in UAE.
This was the brain child of Kyoshi Iqbal, with strong support from his brothers, Renshi V. A. Najeem and Renshi V. A. M. Jaleel, which has now expanded under the umbrella of United Karate Centre Group. United Karate Centre Group encompasses the United Karate Sports Centre in Karama, Aziz Ahmed Technical Sports Centre in Deira United Karate & Fitness Centre in Sharjah, Seibukan Karate Academy in JLT, Karate Sports Centre in International City – all in UAE – as well as Budo Academy in Kakanad, and Budo Academy in Edapally Kerala.
Kyoshi Iqbal is the Chief Instructor and Technical Director of Seibukan Karate-do for the UAE and the Middle East. Sensei Najeem is the Chief Examiner for the UAE. Renshi Jaleel is the Assistant Chief Instructor for the UAE.
Worth a mention is the annual group training and championship conducted regularly, giving all trainees the opportunity to assemble at one point and harness their abilities. Grandmasters from Germany or Japan visit this annual fete, conducting special training sessions.
The students benefit from the refereeing, kata and sparring clinics conducted on a regular basis. They have amply demonstrated their agility and power, winning several open karate championships conducted in the UAE.
The officials of Shorin- Ryu Seibukan Karate of the UAE have also shown their commitments to the society and needy by participating in the Sports Aid & Handicap Aid, conducting Karate and Kobudo demonstrations and contributing the proceeds to charity.
We have a clear vision and definite goals in establishing the Shorin-Ryu Seibukan karate here and may be listed as follows:
- Avoid bad habits like smoking, drugs, addiction to alcohol etc.
- Teach self defense and cultivate confidence. This will help to do away with unnecessary brawls and fights.
- Cultivate good habits by promoting love, mutual respect, co-operation and noble feelings.
- To inculcate a habit of keeping fit and staying healthy as a healthy mind rests in a healthy body.
- To teach International Shorin-Ryu Seibukan Karate and thereby propagate real Traditional Okinawan karate without diluting the techniques and losing its values.
- To spread martial arts across the world to maintain peace and harmony.