The Fighting Dojo was first seen in the Generation I games, positioned to the west of the Saffron Gym. In these early games, it was established that the Fighting Dojo and the Saffron Gym once competed against each other to determine which one would be the Indigo League's sixth Pokémon Gym. Due to the type advantage that Saffron Gym's Psychic-type Pokémon had over the Fighting Dojo's Fighting-type Pokémon, Saffron Gym easily won and became the official gym.
Although no Badge can be won in the Dojo, the unofficial Gym remains open and continues to accept challenges. Four Black Belts test the player's abilities before the player can challenge their master, the Karate Master. The reward for defeating him is a choice between Hitmonlee or Hitmonchan; both Pokémon are at level 30.
Unlike other Gyms, the Fighting Dojo has a simple design which has not changed much over the generations. Between its appearances from the Generation I games to Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver, the Dojo has maintained a wooden floor with no mazes or puzzles to solve. Pure strength and battle strategy is needed to succeed in here.
The two banners on the wall of the Dojo read "Struggle for vengeance!" and "A complicated fracture."
Everyone Welcome! Fighting Dojo
The most significant change in the Generation II games is that only one of the students is left and the Fighting Dojo is, at that time, much like Safari Zone, temporarily closed down. The Karate Master can be found training in Johto's Mt. Mortar. It is in this generation that his name is revealed to be Kiyo (Japanese: ノブヒコ Nobuhiko).
At the Dojo, there are two scrolls behind the student that say "What goes around comes around!" and "Enemies on every side!"
Aesthetic differences aside, the Karate Master is now known as the Karate King. The student at the Dojo also informs the player that the Gym Leaders of Kanto and Johto are allowed to use the Dojo to hold rematches with them, much like how the Sinnoh Gym Leaders can be found for a rematch at the Battleground in Pokémon Platinum. However, unlike Platinum, the Leaders will not arrive at the Dojo until they have been called on for a rematch.
The Dojo debuted in Pasta La Vista!, being incorrectly referred to as the "Pokémon Dojo" in the English dub. The Dojo's leader, Master Hamm, wanted his son Kyle to take over the Dojo, but Kyle wanted to run his noodle restaurant instead. They decided to have a Pokémon battle to settle their differences, but Master Hamm blew his back during the battle, preventing him from finishing the fight. As such, he chose to let Ash fight in his stead, while Kyle chose May to battle in his place. After a bit of sparring to get used to Master Hamm and Kyle's Fighting-type Pokémon, Ash and May restarted the battle. However, the battle was interrupted again, this time by Team Rocket, who tried to steal the Fighting-type Pokémon for themselves, but were stopped by Terri. In the end, Master Hamm let Kyle follow his dream of selling noodles, appointing Terri as his successor instead.
Kyle used his Hitmonchan in the fight for the dojo. The battle was canceled because Kyle's father and opponent, Master Hamm's back was hurting. Hitmonchan was later used by May in a battle against Ash, who used Master Hamm's Hitmonlee.