Early History

The IKS teaches a particular martial art known as Kenpo (Fist Law).  Modern Kenpo was developed in Hawaii during the early 20th century by such Grandmasters as William K.S. Chow, Bill Chun Sr., and James Mitose.  It is a combination of Chinese, Japanese, and Hawaiian arts that feature a combination of punches, kicks, locks, and takedowns. 

Post World War II

After World War II, Kenpo made its way to the Continental United States, and eventually east to New England.  There, in the 1960s, black belts such as Grandmaster George Pesare and, especially, Professor Nicholas Cerio refined the art, codifying much of the curriculum still in place today. 

The IKS is Born

Our co-founders, O-Sensei Louis Desmarais and Meijin Victor Nastasia, met in the 1970's while studying Kenpo at the United Studios of Self Defense.  After years of study, they decided to open their own school and incorporate aspects of other arts into their curriculum, while maintaining the best, traditional practices of the last century. Naming their new school the Independent Karate School, their doors were opened on July 9, 1979.  O-Sensei, a former USMC boxing champion and black belt in Hakko-ryu Jyu Jitsu, built a sister art to Kenpo known as En Shu Do (The Way of the Circle Hands).  Today, four decades after first opening our doors, we continue to teach both arts to all who wish to learn them.