Isaac Florentine started his Martial Arts training back
in 1971 in Tel Aviv Israel. Training in Judo first, and then Karate.
His first instructor was Gideon Kadari, who taught Judo and and
Kyokushinkai Karate. In 1973 a Shito ruy stylist, Hiroshi Korihara
replaced Kadari. In 1975, the dojo had a visitor from Sweden that
changed the way Karate was
perceived by Hiroshi and his students. That man was sensei Tamas
Weber, a high ranking Shito ryu (Sankukai-Shukokai) Karateka. Weber
was an ex captain in the French Foreign Legion, a decorated hero
of the Algerian war. For him Karate was all about efficiency in
In 1976 Hiroshi sensei went back to Japan and was replaced by an
instructor that studied in Tokyo under Master Gogen Yamaguchi's
Karate College and in Mejiro Gym. Isaac and the other dojo practitioners
were taught a blend of Goju Kai and the Japanese version of Muay
Thai. after a few months Isaac was drafted to Israel's Defense Army
(IDF), to a three years mandatory service. During his army service,
while stationed in the port city of Haifa, Isaac join a newly opened
dojo that it's instructor, Arie Berco was a student of Tamas Weber.
Berco has just returned to Israel after living in Sweden. Having
the opportunity to train almost religiously, Isaac Florentine was
the first Person that was tested and prompted to first Dan in Israel
by Tamas Weber, in July 1979.
Isaac started instructing Karate in 1978, while still in the Army
. He first taught cadets in the Air Force Technical School, then
after completing his military service he started teaching at his
former high school in Tel Aviv. Soon after he opened his first dojo.
the dojo was located at a major sport association building. Isaac
was given a hall the was last used by the Israeli Olympic team that
was murdered by Terrorists during the infamous 1972 Munich Olympic
Games. This was Isaac's main dojo untill he left Israel to the USA
ten years later.
In 1980 Isaac went to Stockholm Sweden to train under Tamas Weber.
After a few month of training Isaac returned to Israel and started
running his dojo as a professionally run school. Going into a partnership
with his good friend and fellow Karateka Yossi Sechnovitz, the dojo
flourished, soon they were running three dojos. In 1983 Isaac became
the chief instructor of the association supervising twelve affiliated
dojos all over Israel. Leading many activities, like running training
camps, conducting seminars, participating and also organizing national
and international competitions, (including winning in some). Becoming
one of the directors of the Israeli Karate Federation and conducting
self defense courses (upon receiving a Self Defense instructor's
license, based on Krav Maga, from the Israeli National Sport Institute).
In the late 80's,Isaac appeared many times in Israel's main stream
media: TV, radio, national newspapers and magazines, helping to
spread Karate's popularity. In 1987 he became the technical editor
to the sole Martial art magazine published in Israel.
Coming to America, to fulfil an old dream of becoming a film director,
Isaac stopped teaching Karate but kept on practicing as regular
as possible. In 1999 he created Rising Sun Productions with Canadian
veteran karateka Don Warrener. The company's activity in producing
and distributing Martial Art videos, gave Isaac a rare opportunity
to meet and get an insight look at known Instructors like Fumio
Demura, Hisataka Nishiyama , Ray Dalke, Saksan Janjira, Bill Wallace
and many more. Absorbing whatever knowledge he could, and keeping
it in line of Karate's spirit as it was defined by Gichin Funakoshi:
" The ultimate aim of Karate does not lies in victory or defeat
but in the perfection of character".