The Founding Father of Okinawan Shuri-Ryu Karate-Do

Grand Master Robert A. Trias

10th Dan

( 1929-1989 )

Returning from his Navy service from the Pacific Theater in World War 2, Grandmaster Robert A. Trias (1923-1989) was responsible for the spread of Karate to the United States mainland. He began teaching martial arts in 1945 and opened the first American Karate school in 1946 in Phoenix, Arizona.

In 1948, Grandmaster Trias became the founder and director of the United States Karate Association (USKA) that networked returning veterans into the largest martial arts organization in the United States with several international members and affiliates across the world. He was responsible for holding the first American tournament with the first set of rules in 1955 as well as publishing the first book on Karate in the U.S. titled 'The Hand is my Sword' in 1958. Additionally, the USKA sponsored the first world Karate tournament in Chicago, Illinois in 1963 and the first world professional Karate tournament in San Antonio, Texas in 1968.

Grandmaster Trias was a lifetime learner, therefore, began consolidating his own Karate teachings in consultation with his mentor whom he called "Sensei", Grandmaster Yasuhiro Konishi, and recomposed his own interpretation of Okinawan karate and named his system Okinawan Shuri-Ryu Karate-Do ("The school that learns from tradition to go beyond"). In 1982 his blended style of Karate was recognized by the very high ranking and leading Japanese and Okinawan grandmasters of the time, which included his mentors Grandmaster Yasuhiro Konishi (1893-1983) and "Makoto" Shinken Gima (1896-1989). It was then that he was acknowledged as the founder of the Okinawan Shuri-Ryu Karate-Do system. His passion was to help spread Okinawan Karate & Kobudo to the United States and world wide, in such, forming alliances with many Okinawan and Japanese Masters and Organizations to do just the same.

Sadly, after a three year long battle with bone cancer, Grandmaster Trias passed away on July 11, 1989.


His passing left the Shrui Ryu system in the hands of several Chief Instructors and many headquarter instructors. Shihan Maria Evans was a Headquarters instructor and studied with O’Sensei Trias for 17 years until his passing. She has resolved to carry on the training that she received so that others can benefit just as she did from his legacy.



He took great pains to make sure that all his rank was legitimately recognized as well as the fact of him being an American, and not, native Okinawan. He acknowledged that after his death, documentation would be necessary.
Grandmaster Trias held 10th degree black belts in Karate and Kobudo, a 6th degree black belt in Kodokan Judo, a 2nd degree black belt in Yawara (Jujutsu), and honorary ranks from various countries.

Long Beach Karate Internationals 1964 -Front Row- Left to Right: Pat Burleson, Bruce Lee, Anthony Mirakian, Jhoon Rhee -Back Row- Left to Right: Allen Steen, George Mattson, Ed Parker, Tsutomo Oshima, Robert Trias

Grandmaster Robert A. Trias was also responsible for conquering the following accomplishments in America: 


- 1951 -

Formulated a comprehensive Police Officer Training Hand to Hand program which was eventually adopted by the Arizona Highway Patrol and many other agencies.


1955 -

Wrote the first rules for karate competition.


1955 -

Conducted the first karate tournament.


1959 -

Made the first instructional film. 


1963 -

Conducted the first world karate championships.


1968 -

Conducted the first professional karate tournament.


Robert A. Trias is also the author of 'Karate is my Life', 'The Hand Is My Sword: A Karate Handbook''The Pinnacle Of Karate', 'The Supreme Way', 'The Methods of Shuri-Ryu', and 'Render Yourself Empty'.

- Class Schedule -

Give your child an edge by providing excellent life skills

Our hours of operation are as follows:


6:30-8:30pm - Grappling/Jujitsu


6:30pm - Weapons

7:30-8:30pm - Sparring/Koshiki


6:30-8:30pm - Grappling/Jujitsu


6:30pm - Forms

7:30-8:30pm - Sparring/Koshiki


6:30pm - Forms

7:30-8:30pm Advances Class





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9248 Magnolia Ave

Riverside, Ca 92503

(951) 205-9618

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