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Interested In Starting Karate ? We take a look at club of the year Tora-Kan Ballyporeen Karate Club

Tora-Kan Karate club is in existence since 2003 and originally began life in Ardfinnan. There were a few hardy souls training then and when the opportunity arose to move to Ballyporeen (at the request of the committee), the club set down roots there.

Tora-Kan, which is Japanese for “House of the Tiger” was given to the club instructor, Kevin Sullivan, by Sensei Greg Manning, former SKIF European secretary, after talking to the great Karate master Hirokazu Kanazawa when they watched Kevin grade for his third Dan black belt at that time. Because of his “fighting like a tiger” spirit!

Kevin is training for over 32 years and was numerous times National Kumite (fighting) champion. He was also senior men's European (Kanazawa cup) gold medalist and World bronze medalist, and is actually current World masters bronze medalist and a fifth Dan Black belt! Although retired from competition now, his full focus remains on teaching traditional karate.

The club itself has grown consistently over the years and now boasts more than 10 black belts regularly training every night! Varying in age, size, sex and experience. Although it is fair to say there have being much more training at times!

They have also grown the club as a competitive force within the country as well. With several masters, juniors and seniors representing Ireland at European and world championships.

And now, the club enjoys continued success after securing the Cuchulainn cup for the third time! This is the club of the year trophy awarded for the most successful club in Ireland. However, although they had several national title winners within their ranks, the highlight was young Sean Corbett (20) winning the senior men's Kumite title for the club! The club are very rightly proud of this achievement!

Going forward, Sensei Kevin intends to grow and nurture karate with the help of all the members, and welcome any new members interested in taking up, or returning to, traditional karate. It is a very friendly and welcoming club and no preconceived ideas on potential students. He encourages families to become part of this tradition and always willing to talk to people if they are genuine.

Training is every Tuesday & Thursday, 7.30-9.00 all grades & 9.00-9.30 brown/black belts only. If you are interested, please contact Kevin @ 086 601 0860 or