Master Ron Cain Roku-Dan’s (6th Degree Black Belt) first study of martial arts began with kung fu in 1975 as a 19-year-old college freshman. It didn’t go very well and it was 20 years later that he discovered Isshin-ryu Karate. After introducing himself to Master Tommy True and Master David Love, his studies began in earnest and he has never looked back.
Master Cain has studied at the Roane School of Isshin-ryu in Harriman, Tennessee since 1995, and earned his Sho-dan (First Degree Black Belt) in 2000. He has become a devoted practitioner, having competed regularly in kata, kumite, and weapons throughout his 40’s, 50’s and into his 60’s. Ron is a regular participant in the International Isshin-ryu Karate Association and Isshin-ryu Hall of Fame events. He is a recipient of the I.I.K.A. Legacy Circle of Honor Award and the I.H.O.F. Spirit Award. Ron was promoted to Roku-Dan in 2017 after his review by the I.I.K.A. Board of Directors and proudly holds the I.I.K.A. Roku-Dan/Master rank certification.
Master Cain is the Chief Instructor at the Roane School of Isshin-ryu. Ron’s unique teaching style combines old-school expectations with contemporary instructional methods to establish clear boundaries for student performance and behavior. With the assistance of Mr. Ed Turnington and other Roane School black belts, Ron has organized and operates the Roane School’s tournament competition team. He holds the I.I.K.A. Isshin-ryu instructor certification.
Besides his work at the dojo, Ron has supported the I.I.K.A. Board of directors since 2004 – first as a secretary and now as a full I.I.K.A. Board Member. His contributions have included creation and operation of the I.I.K.A. newsletter and the I.I.K.A. website, and oversight of the I.I.K.A. Constitution and By-laws.
Before his retirement in 2019, Ron worked in the Nuclear Nonproliferation Division at Oak Ridge National Laboratory where he helped implement nuclear safeguards in Belarus, Benin, Cameroon, Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana, Indonesia, Iraq, Jordan, Libya, Malaysia, Morocco, Nigeria, Philippines, Senegal, Serbia, Thailand, Tunisia, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, Vietnam, and Zambia. Ron developed a computer software tool used by over 90 countries to report their nuclear activities to the International Atomic Energy Agency.
Ron is an avid motorcyclist. Two of his notable rides have include a 26-day tour that covered 26 states from Maine, to Washington State, to Southern California, to Key West, and an endurance ride from the Atlantic coast to the Pacific coast back to the Atlantic coast in less than 98 hours.
Today, Ron continues to study and teach regularly at the dojo, attend I.I.K.A. and other Isshin-ryu related tournaments and events, and participate on the I.I.K.A. Board.
Ron is devoted to his wife Sue, their two daughters Sarah and Megan, and their three grandchildren Cash, Griffin, and Kai.