The Phoenix Rises Anew

Beautiful CHANGE and evolution have occurred for the Phoenix System.

Phoenix Martial Arts System has joined forces with Kyoshi Stephen F. Douglas Sr. and Sensei Steve Douglas Jr. and we are rocking and rolling with our “Music” and version of the Martial Arts  “Dance” , Our coming out party happened on June 30, 2012 as Sensei Steve was promoted to Nidan in the Phoenix System. And Stephen and I were promoted to 7th and 6th degree Black Belts respectively  by Shidoshi Ron Van Clief of Chinese Goju Ryu. It was a wonderful day not only for the cherished promotions, but for the fact we had a chance to train with Family and  the PMAS “Family” grew as well. Present for this day were Mr. Tom LeBrun of Knight Hawk Security and LeBrun Self Defense System, Master John Borter of the Modern Self Defense Academy. And we were joined by Martial Artists from New Hampshire , Pennsylvania and Michigan.  Sensei Bob Walstrom of Zujitsu Ryu , James Burkett and James Kite of Chinese Guju and Kelly Shea, a Nidan in Tae Kwon Do. From Vermont we had Master Karen Davoren , founder and chief instructor of Makoto Ryu Dojo and her student Kyle Wyman. And from the Phoenix Family we had Betsy Hurley, The Merrow Family, Yana Scelsi, Sean Bottomms and Tristan Goodman.

All of this was made possible  by a past connection with Shidoshi Van Clief  that Kyoshi Douglas had. We are now members of Shidoshi’s Martial Arts Family. I am also proud to call him Friend. And I am grateful for the Martial Knowledge that he shared that day as he conducted a Defensive Tactics Seminar.

Phoenix Martial Arts System emerged from this weekend shining a little brighter and it was affirmed that it is on the correct Path in its mission to bring traditional Martial/Warrior values to a modern World.

Domo Arigato Shidoshi Ron Van Clief for your recognition of Kyoshi and myself. And thank you Kyoshi for being the Man that you are. Thank you to all that participated. You are valued and loved!

BTW Shidoshi has written a book called The Hanged Man. It is about his life and experiences. It is available at and Kindle. And there are three documentaries coming out here in 2012 featuring him. One debuted in N.Y. while Shidoshi was on tour. Visit his website at for more info.

Until next time I remain Yours in the True Spirit of the Martial Arts.



Martial Arts,Part of your Life!

The Martial Arts offers you a chance to work with the perfect exercise machine, the human body. and if done the right way it can be a moving meditation. The Martial Arts should be a part of your life. It offers so much.

I love this from Masami Tsuruoka as he is talking about Kata but I feel it should apply to both Karate and Life. “Every thing is about feeling.  About feeling in your stomach. About intensity. Without feeling, there is no karate. Without commitment to the motions, there is nothing. People who only learn the mechanics are just exercising, there is no martial art in what they do. It is nothing unless you risk everything–unless the feeling that you might die is present in every motion. For this, there is no shortcuts.”

It has been my lesson to learn that in Life, as in the Dojo, the shortcuts are not worth taking. Martial Arts,a part of my life. Make it a part of yours.

Sahgeen (love and respect) and Namaste!

New Year, New You!

A New Year with the opportunity for a “New You!”  I am not talking about anything changing here but your awareness of  “YOU”. Are you aware of how amazing “YOU” are? It is so easy to find fault with yourself but I have noticed that people find it hard to see how amazing they really are. Go ahead and try to give someone a compliment and see what their reaction is. Now give yourself a compliment and feel your reaction.

What does this have to do with Kabox or Phoenix Martial Arts? A lot, because a big part of both for me, as an instructor, is about getting people to really enjoy what they are becoming. I have the gift of watching children and adults change on a daily basis with each training session. Body, Mind and Spirit change each time you train. When you are done there is a “New You” that emerges.

In this New Year, allow yourself to feel the changes in the “New You!”

Sahgeen and Namaste

Happy New Year!

And what a great New Year it is!!! New students in the Dojo and new energy for “beginners” mind.

Welcome 2011 with all of your opportunities and possibilities! It is training time!


The Phoenix Is Rising!

Chinese surgeon Hua To (A.D. 190-265) studied the movements of the tiger, bear, monkey, deer, and the bird and transformed them into excercises. Other animals that are copied in the Martial Arts for fighting purposes are the crane, eagle, leopard, mantis, cat and the ever painful when done the right way, horse stance. Dragon and the phoenix eye fist are present as well. The punch is referred to as the rams head and a back kick is called mule kick in certain styles. And while in Pittsburgh this year for the Black belt Hall of Fame induction weekend, I was fortunate enough to witness the Lion dance ceremony.

Phoenix Martial Arts System is adopting totem Animals of its own for the essence that lies behind them.

 The Phoenix  is symbolic of change as it is constantly consumed by the fire only to rise from the ashes reborn. This is also akin to the martial Arts saying,”Get knocked down 7 times but get up 8 times.”

The Bear is a symbol of awakening the power of the unconscious. Go inside and awaken the potentials inherent. Trust yourself and spend time in introspection.

The Deer for us is associated with gentleness but also with a ferociousness in battle when cornered that is unsuspected. There are stories of hunters being attacked by deer that they thought they had killed but in actuality they only wounded. The hunter quickly becomes the victim.

The Hawk symbolizes guardianship and visionary power. They are the protectors. And their sharp talons and beak can rip and tear into an adversary.

The Mountain Lion symbolizes leadership. And the Mountain Lion also is decisive in the use of personal power. “When it attacks it does not hesitate.”

The Wolf is the pathfinder and/or teacher. But Wolf  also symbolizes guardianship, loyalty, and ritual.

So with in the Phoenix Martial Arts there are elements of  change and growth. Introspective time to learn who and what you all about. Protection of yourself and others. Leadership is a key factor as well as being decisive and discovering your personal power. Loyalty  and honor  your self and others!!!

So there are the five animals of the Phoenix and what they represent.  The Phoenix is rising.

It’s Training Time!

Chances are if you are reading this, you either have an interest in the Martial Arts or you are a Martial Artist in training. Either way I say “It’s Training Time!” If you have been thinking about it for awhile it is time to start. Give yourself the gift that keeps on giving.

If you are currently training in the Martial Arts I say “It’s training time…all the time!”  Give yourself the gift of knowing that you are training all the time, not just on the Dojo floor when you are in your uniform.

As Martial Artists we train for more than self-defense techniques. We are training for improved health, better body fitness, and clarity of mind.

“It’s training time!”

Phoenix Continues to Rise!

It was my pleasure and my honor to attend The 23rd Annual 2010 Global Leadership Conference & U.S.A. International Black Belt Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony Conference Weekend on November 12-14. It was wonderful to see old friends and make new ones from the United States and around the world.

Missing from this years event was the physical presence of Dr. Marty Manuel but his Spirit was alive and well represented by his students. A great Martial Artist,Sensei and Man. You are missed my Brother in the Martial Arts.

My thanks to Dr. Tom LeBrun for nominating me for The Diamond Crystal Award of Spirit and to Grandmaster John Kanzler for inducting Alan McGraw with the Outstanding achievement Award.

It was also my pleasure and honor to present a Kabox seminar to my fellow Martial Arts colleagues.My proudest moment came when Soke Kanzler announced Phoenix Martial Arts System at the banquet dinner that evening as he presented me with my Award.

A special thank you to my students. Because of you the Phoenix continues to rise!