Kaicho Raffi Liven is the founder of the World Academy of Martial Arts. He created the Karate style Sho Shin Do and developed the self-defense system Krav Maga LI – one of the only developments accepted by the late Master Imi Lichtenfeld.
Kaicho Liven was born in Tel Aviv on the 3rd of march, 1949 and has lived in Denmark since 1981.
Kaicho Liven started training karate when he was 9 and got graduated with the first Dan at the age of 15. From than on he decided to dedicate his life to the Way (jap. Do) of martial arts.
Over the last 61 years he has trained many different systems including Shotokan, Kyokushinkai-Karate, Thai-boxing, Kendo, Judo, Aikido, Kobudo, Kick-boxing original Okinawa-te and Full-contact Karate. His philosophy is that a person should never stop to learn and to keep an open mind to everything. Nowadays he is one of the highest ranking Karate masters in Europe.
In 1967 Kaicho Liven fought the 6-Days-War and in 1973 in the Yom-Kippur-War and worked after as an instructor for the special forces in Israel.
After his time in the military he traveled a lot and went for a longer time to Japan to train under the masters of the originally Okinawa-te and to take part in many competitions. At all the places he came to he was invited to teach Karate and self defense.
During 1977-1978 he worked as a bodyguard for a president on the island of Martinique. Also in this year he became two times a European champion in Full-contact Karate.
In 1980 the doctors found a malignant tumor in Shihan Liven’s sinus. Already short after the dangerous surgery and irradiation he started slowly training again, and as he explains it himself the physically and mentally power which he had developed through the many years of intensive training helped him to defeat the cancer. In 1981 Shihan Liven was invited to Norway to prepare the Norwegian national team for the European Championship and there he found out that the cool climate was good for his health. He decided to settle down in a country with a climate like in Norway. At the end of 1981 he moved to Denmark and started his first karate school there.
In 1985 Bushido Sports Center, where Sho Shin Karate Do has its main quarter until today, was opened. In all the years when Kaicho Liven was training and teaching different martial arts included Karate styles he never found a perfect one. He was all the time very grateful for what he could learn from different master but he always felt that something was missing. At the end of the 80th he started therefore to develop his own style Sho Shin Do what means the Genuine Way.
In 1992 Kaicho Liven saved the life of a man who was attacked and tried to stab down. With a Yoku Geri (sidekick) he sent the attacker through a shop window. This episode made him famous in the Danish media because the man he saved was a policeman in civil. When Kaicho Liven is asked about this episode he reacts amazed. Already many times before he saved other people lives. Most times people who were attacked by criminals. But the first time that the media were interested in this, was when it was a policeman and even than only for a short period of time. When somebody kills people he is remembered forever but when you are saving other lives people remember it only very short. Something is wrong with people attitude. In Kaicho Livens opinion many could help others but this requires an extensive training and preparation.
Beside Karate Kaicho Liven was teaching self-defense all the time. Krav Maga the self-defense and close combat system of the Israeli army proved to be the most effective system of teaching self-defense to people also with no background in other martial arts. After Krav Maga stopped to be a secret of the Israeli army Kaicho Liven founded his own organization – Krav Maga Liven International.
As a way of keeping his mind and body fit, Kaicho Liven practices Tamashiwari – the art of breaking, discipline in which he is truly a master. He is the holder of the world record of breaking 199 bricks in the shortest possible time – 60 seconds in 1990. In 1991 he broke 113 bricks with Gyaku Tzuki in 30 seconds and in 1992 he broke 130kg of massive concrete with one Yoku Geri.
Many times in a year he is traveling around the world to follow the invitations of different clubs from Norway, Israel, Germany, Russia, Italy, Thailand, Slovakia, Czech Republic or Iceland to teach Karate and Krav Maga. In 1993 he was a guest at the Norsk Budo-gala in Oslo where a broad spectrum of the world best martial artists were represented.
On 10.12.1999 Kaicho Liven received his 9.dan from Jon Bluming (10.dan from Holland) and Kenji Kurosaki (10.dan) from the Kyokushin Budo Kai Organisation.
Kaicho Liven met Imi Lichtenfeld the founder of Krav Maga first time in 1966 when he visited Imi Lichtenfelds dojo in Pinsker st, Tel Aviv.
Kaicho Raffi Liven is the only one who saved a life of a policeman and became a hero for one day, why? Kaicho Liven is very disappointed because when you put your life in danger and save a man against a criminal attack with weapons, you become a hero for one day. You are remembered by the society just for a few days. Kaicho Liven is asking why, when a person murders a policeman he is remembered for a long time by the police and by the society, but when you save a policeman or somebody you are marked for a short time and after a few days nobody remembers you.
Good things are falling into oblivion very fast.