George Mattson

George Mattson

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

George E. Mattson iis a well known author of martial arts books and one of the first Americans to be awarded a black belt in Uechi-ryū Karate-do. He was the first to teach the style professionally resulting in the majority of the original growth in the United States of America. He was one of the very first to publish a book in English about karate and has since continued to publish many books on Uechi-Ryu.



The 3 major, unique contributions documenting his style of karate

Besides his first book which was a Hard Cover book, he has write several books that are published as paper back books and e-book EPUB versions for electronic reading devices. This includes the following:

  • The Way of Karate, Tuttle Publishing, 1958[2][3]
  • Uechiryu Karate Do : Classical Chinese Okinawan Self Defense, Peabody Publishing, 1974[4][5]
  • The Way of Uechi-ryu Karate, Peabody Publishing, 2010[6][7]

He is known as the father of American Uechi-Ryu Karate-Do and has been responsible for the resulting growth in several countries (i.e. Canada and Bermuda) by his students.

Major Uechi-Ryū Students of George Mattson

  1. Campbell, Robert (9th degree black belt)
  2. Canna, Van (9th degree black belt)
  3. Durkin, Buzz (9th degree black belt)
  4. Maloney, James – Canada – (9th degree black belt)
  5. Mattson, Walter – no relation – (10th degree black belt)
  6. Rabesa, Arthur (9th degree black belt)
  7. Summers, Jack (10th degree black belt)
  8. Blake, Windsong (8th degree black belt)
  9. Deraney, George A. (8th degree black belt)
  10. Finkelstein, David (8th degree black belt)
  11. Glasheen, William (8th degree black belt)
  12. Huff, Ed (8th degree black belt)
  13. Mott, David (8th degree black belt)
  14. Neide, Joan L. (8th degree black belt)
  15. Wharton, Alton P. – Burmuda – (8th degree black belt)
  16. Wilder, Clarence (8th degree black belt)
  17. Witherell, Bruce (8th degree black belt)
  18. Wong, Gary (8th degree black belt)
  19. Yee, Darin (8th degree black belt)


He has sponsored an ongoing set of seminars by international karate masters including Okinawan Uechi-Ryu Karate-Do masters from Okinawa for over thirty years consecutively since 1983. Almost all of these have been in the United States of America except for the notable exception in 1985 which was held in Okinawa, Japan with virtual every Okinawan Uechi-Ryu Karate-Do masters from Okinawa giving seminars and culminating in the participation in the annual All-Okinawa Karate-Do Kumite Championship with all styles of Okinawan Karate competing from all over the world each year.

George E. Mattson had been the chief instructor of a karate school in Boston at various location for decades.[9] Many of his students upon mastery of Uechi-Ryu Karate-Do started successful karate schools in the Boston area and around Massachusetts and the New England area. Many of them including George E. Mattson himself moved to Florida and started successful karate schools in Florida. He currently teaches at his karate school in Mount Dora, Florida.[10]

Early History

Ryuko Tomoyose originally taught George E. Mattson as a young American serviceman[11][12] for several hours in the evening after his duties on the military base in Okinawa only training occasionally at the Uechi-Ryu Karate-Do headquarters by Kanei Uechi and his other Master students. He was promoted to 1st degree black belt before leaving Okinawa at the end of his service in the military. Ryuko Tomoyose had studied previously with the founders of the other two major Okinawan Karate styles before starting lessons with Kanei Uechi finally. A few months before becoming too ill, Kanbun Uechi returned to Okinawa and taught at his son’s karate school in Nago, Okinawa, Japan. During that time, Ryuko Tomoyose studied with Kanbun Uechi and his students there. Ryuko Tomoyose therefore has the distinction of being one of the very few that was a student of all three founders of all three of the major styles of Okinawan Karate, Kanbun Uechi, Chojun Miyagi, and Chosin Chibana.

George E. Mattson returned to Okinawa many times and arranged to travel with his students to Okinawa often. Through his continued travel to Okinawa and the seminars sponsored for Okinawan masters to travel to the USA George E. Mattson has been studying under the majority of Uechi-Ryu Karate-Do masters of the 20th century. As a result, he has been among the first to be promoted to each degree of black belt up to his current rank of 10th degree black belt in Uechi-Ryu Karate-Do in the USA.


  1.  Rymaruk, Ihor. Karate: A Master’s Secrets of Uechi-Ryu.
  2. ^ Mattson, George E., The Way of Karate, Tuttle Publishing, 1958
  3.  Uechi-Ryu Butokukai web site
  4.  Mattson, George E., Uechiryu Karate Do : Classical Chinese Okinawan Self Defense, Peabody Publishing, 1974
  5.  International Uechi-Ryū Karate Federation web site
  6.  Mattson, George E., The Way of Uechi-ryu Karate, Peabody Publishing, 2010
  7.  Uechi-Ryu site with much information on the style

Further reading

  • Bishop, Mark, Okinawan Karate, Tuttle: 1999
  • Dollar, Alan, Secrets of Uechi Ryu and the Mysteries of Okinawa, Cherokee Publishing: 1996
  • Joyner, Donald B., The Art and History of Uechi Ryu Karate-Do (A Study Guide for Uechi Ryu Karate-Do), (Paperback) January 1, 1996
  • Joyner, Donald B., Uechi Ryu Karate-Do Student Guide and Handbook (A Study Guide for Uechi Ryu Karate-Do)ISBN 978-1-304-90660-1, February 1996
  • Rymaruk, Ihor, Karate: A Master’s Secrets of Uechi-ryu, Iron Arm International: 2004
  • Rymaruk, Ihor, Uechi-Ryu DVD Vol.1 Overview and Vol.2 Building Blocks

External links