The title Soke means Grandmaster or head of the family.
The founder of the Tsu Shin Gen International Budo Association is Soke David C. Cook 10th Dan. He has over 45 years experience of teaching Kyokushin Karate, Ashihara Karate, Ashihara International Karate and more recently his own TSG-Karate and TSG-Mix Fight styles.
During this time he has studied in Japan and other countries under various Karate and more recently Grappling Masters. He also spent some time studying the Wing Chun style of Kung Fu at the Chinese Legation in London in the early nineteen seventies. From the very beginning he was very interested in improving his knowledge of Martial Arts and he did not allow himself to be confined by a style.
In his opinion Budo can be much more than just fighting arts. It can be a way of life or even a vehicle for understanding the purpose and meaning of life. During the long arduous hours of Budo training one goes through many physical and mental tests. These tests develop a strong character, because one is often forced to go beyond one’s own imagined limits.
As a student reaches a new grade or level, and has mastered one set of techniques, the next level is always waiting and requires more hard work and hardships.
Just as in everyday life, when one has learned to cope with one set of problems a new and often more difficult set crops up.The never ending effort to improve one’s techniques is what develops a strong “fighting spirit”. The fighting spirit attained by those who have trained Budo for many years, often helps them to overcome problems in life that would break the spirit of another person.
Soke Cook spent fourteen years with Sosai Mas. Oyama's 10th Dan Kyokushin Organisation. He is the author of the excellent instruction book based on the Kyokushin Style - Power Karate and more recently an updated version.
At one time he was the Chairman of the Swedish Karate Kyokushinkai and a Kyokushin Branch Chief.
In 1977 he was one of the first two Europeans to complete the 50 Man Kumite. Fifty rounds of full contact Kyokushin Knockdown Fighting, two minutes each round, without any rest periods.
Soke Cook 10th Dan
Sosai Mas Oyama 10th Dan
In 1987 he visited Kancho Ashihara in Japan, because he had heard that Kancho Ashihara had started to break with the traditional way of teaching Karate in Japan, and this seemed like it might be an interesting path to follow.On his return from Japan, he started promoting the Ashihara Style in Europe. Within a few years he developed the couple of European Dojos that had been established under Kancho Ashihara, into a multi-national organisation with branches in more than ten countries.
In 1990 at the Ashihara European Summer Camp, he was unanimously elected to be the President of the European Organisation, which was formed at a meeting of all the European Country Representatives and Black Belts, attending the camp. Although he thought that Ashihara Karate was a step in the right direction, he felt that there was still room for a lot of improvement, so he continued to develop the system adding fighting combinations for every grade and developing the Kata so that they could always be practised with a partner (Uke). This new version of the system was renamed Ashihara International Karate.
Soke Cook 10th Dan
Kancho Ashihara 10th Dan
In February 1991 he was invited to be the guest of honor at a Tournament held in Irkutsk, Siberia. He was also asked to teach and demonstrate the techniques of Ashihara International in the former Soviet Union. This was the beginning of the Ashihara International in what was the Soviet Union. Since then he has made more than 50 visits to Russia, Ukraine and Poland. The progress of Ashihara International and the standard of the students in that part of the world are of the highest calibre. A number of international tournaments have been held in Russia.Some of these tournaments were shown on Russian national television. He also developed new tournament rules which proved to be a success both for the fighters and the spectators.
Soke Cook has also trained Shito Ryu Karate and Kobudo under Soke J. Ruiz 10th Dan, in the USA. Soke Ruiz is one of the world’s most knowledgeable Karate Grand Masters and he has had a lasting influence on Soke Cook.
Soke Cook’s path from a traditional Karate style, Kyokushin Karate, to a less traditional style, Ashihara Karate, to a more modern version,
Ashihara International Karate and his own systems have one thing in common - Bunkai (application).
When he first came into contact with Soke Ruiz, 10th Dan, in the USA in 1982 one of the things that impressed him most was Soke Ruiz’s knowledge of Kata Bunkai. Having trained Kyokushin Karate where Bunkai of Kata was not a well developed concept, he was impressed by the ability of Soke Ruiz to go back to the roots of the Kyokushin Kata and demonstrate the original Bunkai of the Kata.
Therefore when he developed Ashihara International Karate from the Japanese Ashihara Karate, he was determined that all the techniques of every Kata could be performed with a training partner (Uke). This made the Bunkai automatic because the students learnt the Kata in the Bunkai form and this is thanks to the influence of Soke Ruiz.
Soke Cook 10th Dan
Soke J. Ruiz 10th Dan
In 1995 Soke Cook decided to develop a mixed fighting system together with the TSG-Karate system he was developing. These were based on his own personal experience and way of teaching.
The first version of this system was presented at the 1996 Summer Camp in Holland. The name of the style is now TSG-Mix Fight
Soke Cook 10th Dan
Shihan Dave Jonkers 8th Dan
In 1996 he was introduced to Shoot Style by Omar Bouiche from Stockholm, Sweden. Omar Bouiche, together with World Shoot Champion,
Erik Paulson from Los Angeles and they were a source of inspiration.
In 2002 Soke Cook revised the TSG-Mix Fight system and it was introduced at the Swedish Summer Camp.
Also in August 2002, Soke Cook was inducted into the “World Head of Family Sokeship Council”. (Soke is the title used for a person who is the founder of a style. He is the Grandmaster of the style.)
In 2004 Soke Cook completely revised the TSG-Mix Fight system once again to keep up with some of the developments in this type of fighting.
The first Tournaments were held using the Tsu Shin Gen’s new Competition rules.
In 2005 Soke Cook turned his attention to the education of the Tsu Shin Gen Instructors and the production of the Instructor’s Guidelines.
Soke Cook 10th Dan and Hanshi Ivan Titenkov 8th Dan
The Tsu Shin Gen web site was opened and the international interest for Tsu Shin Gen started to grow, especially in the Russian Federation among other countries.
In 2006 Soke Cook revised the TSG-Karate system. (In some areas it is also known as TSG-Fighting Karate.) This modern fighting style Karate system is now built around 12 newly developed Kata containing realistic and effective fighting combinations.
These combinations are suitable for various forms of Self-defense and also Competition.
In 2008 Soke Cook was promoted to 9th Dan in recognition of the contribution that he has made to Budo during the previous 40 years.
In 2010 Soke Cook developed and added 4 Fighting Combinations to each of the grades from 10th Kyu to 3rd Dan for the TSG-Kyokushin Karate Syllabus, a total of 52 fighting combinations, in order to improve the fighting knowledge of the students.
In 2012 Soke Cook released DVDs covering the systems he teaches.
In 2012 a completely revised version of his famous book "Power Karate" was published.
In December 2014 Soke Cook was awarded 10th Dan.
In 2017 Soke Cook publishes 4 new books on the systems he teaches: TSG-Combat Karate, TSG-Mix Fight, TSG-Ashihara International Karate and TSG-Kyokushin Karate.
Up to the year 2017 Soke Cook has taught Karate and Mix-Fight in a total of 23 countries.