Established in 1962 by Yoshisada Yonezuka, the Cranford Judo Karate Center has been home to many aspiring students, world-class athletes, and Olympic medalists. After training several Olympic and World team athletes including his son Nick, Yoshisada was asked to be the Head Coach of the US Judo Team for the 1988 and 1992 Olympic Games.
The Dojo walls display the club’s history in photographs, newpaper and magazine articles from Olympic Games, World Championships, Junior National, Junior World Championships, Karate World Championships, and Sumo Championships. These artifacts are a tribute to the many years of dedication and training of these stellar athletes of all ages.
Yoshisada Yonezuka was well-known within the Martial Arts circles and was active in several organizations. Promoting these sports and training world-class athletes was his life-long ambition.
Since his passing in 2014, his son, Nick Yonezuka, has dedicated himself to continuing what his father started 52 years ago.
Head Sensei, Nick Yonezuka, has been practicing and competing in Judo since he was 4 years old. Nick was Junior National Champion every year he competed from the age of 9 until making the Olympic Team in 1980 at 16 years old. He still holds the record as the youngest male judo Olympian. Nick was a 12 time Senior National Finalist, winning gold 5 times. Internationally, Nick defeated world champions, as well as winning a gold medal at the 1986 Dutch Open and a bronze medal at the World University Games. Since his competition days, Nick has continued to train religiously and instruct here at the Cranford Judo Karate Center.
Chun Mon Tsang
Chun Mon Tsang, known to all as “Mon”, has been the karate instructor at Cranford Judo Karate Center since 1983. Mon was a 1985 and 1992 World Karate US Team Member, the 1985 USAKF National Championship Gold Medalist, the 1987 World Koshiki Karate Silver Medalist, and the 1988 Miami International Karate Gold Medalist. Mon teaches the Shito-ryu style of Karate. This is one of the four major styles of Karate in Japan.