Founder Andrea Guarelli

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Andrea Guarelli was born in Verona, Italy, in 1961. He began practicing Karate at a young age and then added the practice of Kobudō (traditional white weapons of Okinawa, Japan).After several successful competitions at National level, in 1980 he was called to join the Italian National team.

In the 1980s, he went to Taiwan and then to Okinawa where he trained with the Kobudō headmaster M° Shinpō Matayoshi and that of the Gōju-ryū karate Eiichi Miyazato both 10° Dan; since then he has gone to Okinawan at least once a year. In 1990 he was nominated responsible for Italy in the Zen Okinawan Kobudō Renmei
(All Okinawa Kobudō Federation).

In 1993 he founded the Italian Okinawa Kobudo Association and wrote his first articles for specialized magazines.

In 1995 he organized in Bussolengo (Verona) the unique seminar in Italy of the master Shinpō Matayoshi.

In 1996 he was nominated as responsible for Italy of the Okinawan Gōju-ryū Karatedō Kyokai (Okinawan Gōju-ryū Karate Federation).

In 1997 Master Shinpō Matayoshi gave him the rank of 6° Dan and the title of Kobudō Renshi.

In 1998 his book about the Bō of Okinawa was published by the Edizioni Mediterranee – Roma. In 1999 he participated in Okinawa in the demonstration in honor of M° Matayoshi (anniversary of his death). In the same year he went to China (Fuzhou) where he trained with master Jin Jingfu of the White Crane.

In 2002 his book about the bō was translated in Germany by the Weinmann editor of Berlin.

In 2003 the Okinawa Federation gave him the title of Karate Kyoshi.

In 2008 on the occasion of a seminar in Cape Town, South African TV dedicated a service to him in the National program of martial arts “The Warrior.” He went to Okinawa and China (Yongchun) where the local TV filmed him in Confucius’ temple. He trained with M° Su Yinghan of the White Crane style. The Okinawan Federation gave him the rank of 8° Dan and the title of Kobudō Kyoshi.

In November 2009 he was nominated member of the directive council of the important association Yongchun Yiyun Society of Yongchun (Fujian – China). At the same time they gave him responsibility for the Baihequan style (White Crane) for Italy. In 2010 he published his second book “Karatedō Nagewaza.”

In 2011 during a journey to China he was invited to demonstrate a White Crane form in the temple dedicated to this style in Yong Chun, the demonstration and his interview were filmed and transmitted by TV of Taiwan. His name is engraved in the White Crane temple wall where the genealogy of this style’s masters is illustrated, from the founder, Fang Qiniang, to the 12th generation which includes the author.

In September 2012 the Okinawan Federation gave him the 8° Dan of Karate. He has taught seminars of Karate and Kobudō of Okinawa in the following countries:
Spain, Germany, Denmark, Czech Republic, South Africa, England and USA. He is a member of the National Association of Olympic Athletes and Italian National team members. He is the founder and president of the International Matayoshi Kobudo Association (I.M.K.A.).

In 2016 his book Okinawan Kobudo: The History, Tools and Techniques of the Ancient Martial Art will be available from Skyhorse Publishing.