Karate-Do Shito Kai Des Moines is a Karate school located in the historic East Village in Downtown Des Moines and today held their rank exam and Kata Seminar with Master Kunio Murayama visiting from Monterrey, Mexico.

The Karate-Do Shito Kai Des Moines school is owned by three Mexican and Japanese American siblings Seiken Nakata (Black belt 4th dan), Kenji Nakata (Black belt 2nd dan) and Midori Nakata (Brown belt 2do kyu) from Des Moines, IA.

The instructor Nakata Sensei started practicing karate when he was 10 years old and received his black belt at age 14. During his career, he has had the opportunity to experience practically all aspects of karate, both sporting and cultural. He was an apprentice of Murayama Sensei, the Technical Director of the school.

Master Kunio Murayama has been practicing karate-do for more than 50 years, was a direct student of Master Manzo Iwata, holds 8th Dan (WSKF), was captain and coach of Toyo University (Japan), as well as coach of the Mexican National Team.  Murayama Sensei is also the headmaster or many schools in the USA, Mexico, Dominican Republic, Canada, Costa Rica, and Great Britain.

Amner Martinez’ 9-year old twins Luca and Azul have been coming to classes for 5 1/2 years. “Karate is building the twins confidence, discipline, patience and appreciation for the Art of Karate. Although they are peaceful children, they are equipped to self defend.” Amner shared with us. The twins are two exams away from becoming black belts.

If you are interested on learning more about the classes available for children and adults please visit their website at or call them at (515) 745-8471.


They are located right in the heart of the Historic East Village of Downtown Des Moines. Their address is 315 E 5th Street, in the same building as Westrum Optometry. The Dojo is located in the basement, next to Gateway Dance Theater.

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