American Kenpo Karate
USA Martial Arts Hall of Famer Michael Miller has been involved with the martial arts since 1990. He currently holds a fourth degree black belt in Ed Parker’s American kenpo karate under the direction of Mr. Sean Kelley. He has trained with some of the top kenpo guys in the world including: Grandmaster Michael Robert Pick, Grandmaster Dave Hebler (ex bodyguard to Elvis Presley), Lee Wedlake, Rainer Schulte, Dennis Nackord and Jeff Speakman. Miller credits Grandmaster Larry Tatum, however, for mentoring him for seven years leading him in the right direction in American kenpo. Along with continuously training with his instructor numerous times a year, Miller actively continues to attend seminars and take private lessons under Grandmaster Michael Robert Pick, Grandmaster Dave Hebler and Master Rainer Schulte.
Miller has cross trained in various other martial arts systems including: Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (Gracie), White Crane Kung-fu, Taekwondo, Tai Chi and Chin-na. He has learned from a variety of different instructors from different systems training with top notch martial artists including Lee Epperson as well as the legendary Joe Lewis and Bill “Superfoot” Wallace. Lewis and Wallace are two of the three top fighters of all time as Chuck Norris was the third.
Miller has become well known in the martial arts industry due to his accomplishments, abilities, and his relationships with the top martial artists in the world. Miller has shared knowledge with such legends as Bob Wall, Don “The Dragon” Wilson, Bill “Superfoot” Wallace, Benny “The Jet” Urquidez, Joe Lewis, Fumio Demura, Richard Norton, Keith Vitali, Cynthia Rothrock and the late Howard Jackson. Other well known martial artists Miller has been in contact with include Chuck Norris, Gene LeBell, Eric Lee, Jhoon Rhee, David Carradine, Chris Casamassa, Bob White, Huk Planas, Karen Shepard and Ed Parker Jr.
Miller has interviewed several of those mentioned above throughout his journey as a martial artist and a writer. Miller received a Bachelor of Arts degree in writing with a minor in sociology from the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford in April of 2002. Since then he has been a successful freelance writer, getting most of his publishing credits through martial arts magazines. He is currently working on a series of biographies of Kenpo legends beginning with Master Rainer Schulte of whom he has established a friendship with. Schulte is a first generation black belt under Ed Parker. Biographies to follow at this time will include, Grandmaster Dave Hebler, Grandmaster Michael Robert Pick, David Stanley (Elvis Presley’s step-brother) and Tony Cogliandro. There will also be more in the future.
To date Miller has had seven magazine feature articles published throughout Inside Kung-fu and Black Belt magazines: “The Circle and The Line” (Inside Kung-fu July 2004), “One Strike, One Kill vs. Multiple Strikes” (Black Belt October 2004), “Kung-Fu Animals vs. Kenpo Animals” (Inside Kung-fu March 2005), “Versatility at your Fingertips” (Inside Kung-fu July 2005), “American Kenpo’s Chinese Elements” (Inside Kung-fu June 2006), “Stand Your Ground or Move Around” (Black Belt January 2007), and “A World Without Forms?” (Inside Kung-fu June 2007). Pictures of Miller performing techniques on some of his top students were also featured in the last three articles. American Kenpo Grandmaster Larry Tatum did Miller a favor by doing the pictures for two of his articles, and archive pictures were placed in the Black Belt article. Miller also had a profile of an ex student, world champion, MacKenzey McNulty, published in the August 2006 issue of Inside Kung-fu.
Miller is a proud member of the Chinese Karate Federation (CKF) run by American Kenpo seventh degree black belt Senior Professor Sean Kelley. Miller’s Dojo has a charter membership through CKF as well. Miller was honored to be nominated to become the CKF Public Relations Administrator under the recommendation of Grandmaster Michael Robert Pick, Master Rainer Schulte and Senior Professor Sean P. Kelley (CKF President) due to his diplomatic ways of communicating to a diverse audience. To find out more about the CKF please click the link.
Miller was inducted into the U.S.A. Martial Arts Hall of Fame in the beginning of February of 2006 (2/4/06) and again in March of 2007. He was honored to receive this recognition. He is featured in the Who’s Who section of the site: www.kenponet.com where the bio’s of many of the world’s top kenpoists can be found. Miller was quoted in the self-defense section of the book “American Kenpo Mastery” written by 6th degree black belt Jamie Seabrook. Many of the top kenpoists were also quoted in the book.
Miller began teaching Kenpo in 1998 and has been running his full time studio since May of 2006. Although Miller loves teaching adults, he specializes in child programs due to his knowledge of child development at the physical, mental, social, and behavioral levels. Miller was a caseworker for Children and Youth Services in McKean County for three years and was certified by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare as a Child Welfare Direct Service Worker.
Miller believes in teaching about reality, not fantasy. Miller’s students receive internationally recognized instruction that instills discipline for the sake of becoming a professional black belt. Miller tailors his teachings to each individual to ensure he or she will become the best he/she can be. Miller’s instructor, Sean Kelley, comes three times a year to do seminars at Miller’s Dojo and Master Rainer Schulte and Grandmaster Dave Hebler come in at least once a year so his students have a chance to train with some of the best Kenpo instructors in the world. Miller plans on getting other Kenpo icons in the future.
Miller’s future goals include writing a few martial arts scripts in hopes that one of his actor friends would be interested in them. Miller collaborates with Don “The Dragon” Wilson on a regular basis, so he would be Miller’s first choice. Miller also hopes to play a part in at least one martial arts movie in the future.
Miller dedicates his life to his teaching and the spirit of Ed Parker. He has come a long way and believes that teaching is what God has sent him to do while he is on this earth. He shares the same view as his idol Chuck Norris which is, “Your Life and martial arts training are useless if you don’t follow Jesus Christ.” Miller is not a fan of Religion or Religious club houses, but believes in living life for God. He states, “If you give your life to the Lord by putting him first and allowing him in your heart, and truly live the way He wants you to, your life will be magnificent. Without God, you are missing everything.” Miller is a Christian who has a close personal relationship with God. He does not preach Religion, nor does he practice a certain religion. He lives his life for God—it’s that simple. Miller attends Open Arms Community Church in Bradford, Pa every week with his lovely wife Kathy and his beautiful daughter Lily Rose.
Miller can be reached through his Web site at www.millersdojo.com or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.