I began martial arts training in 1990 while living in Kentucky. I trained with my cousin Soke Robert Stines Jr.; who, at that time, taught Shorin-Ryu Shorin-kan Karate.
It was during this time that I developed a deep respect and affection for the Okinawan martial arts. However, after 6 months of training in Williamsburg Kentucky, I relocated to Michigan for employment/financial reasons. There I found Southfield Martial Arts; which was the dojo of Grand Master Willie Adams, and I was introduced to Isshin-ryu Karate. The Southfield dojo was a well-established training facility, with a deep stable of talented Black Belt level practitioners on the floor. Many of those Black Belts are tournament champions in Kata, Kobudo, and Kumite; this was a fertile environment for a young hungry mind, with a desire for martial arts knowledge. I flourished in this dedicated and disciplined martial arts environment, and also continued to train with my cousin through the years during vacations and meeting at tournaments and seminars throughout the south and east coast of the U.S.
In 1999 my career progressed and I left Michigan and again relocated to Kentucky for work. There I continued my training with Soke Robert Stines, who had developed the progressive style of Sanshin-Ryu Jujitsu; which is an eclectic system that blends Okinawan Karate, Judo, and Danzan-Ryu Jujitsu. I also continued training in Isshin-ryu Karate, through travel back to Michigan and meeting local practitioners in Kentucky and Tennessee as a part of that continuation I spent some time training at the Wheeler Academy with Sensei Chuck Reynolds and was fortunate to be a part of the final class held at the old dojo location in Powell, I consider myself very fortunate to have worked with some well-known and proficient Isshinryu practitioners along the way. I am currently continuing my Isshinryu journey under the guidance of Master Doyle Seiber and have been for the last few years.
Throughout my martial arts training, I have competed in many local, Regional, and National level Karate Tournaments in the U.S. and Canada, as well as competing in local, Regional, and National level Sport Jujitsu tournaments. I have won many awards for Kumite, Kata, and Kobudo in notable tournaments such as:
Other notable accomplishments:
In 1999 Sensei Ellis’ career progressed and he left Michigan and again relocated to Kentucky. He continued training with his cousin, who had developed the progressive style of Sanshin-Ryu Jujitsu; which is an eclectic system that blends Okinawan Karate, Judo, and Danzan-Ryu Jujitsu. Sensei Ellis also continued training in Isshin-Ryu Karate, through traveling back to Michigan and meeting local practitioners in Kentucky and Tennessee.
Throughout his Martial Arts training, Sensei Ellis has competed in many local, regional, and national level Karate tournaments in the U.S. and Canada, as well as competing in local, regional, and national level Jujitsu Tournaments such as the North American Karate Championships; Aoka Grand Nationals; Kiai Grand Nationals; The Isshin-Ryu Hall of Fame; and the A.J.L National Jujitsu Championships.
In 2013 Soke Stines moved to Florida but Sensei Ellis continues to train with him at training camps and seminars, and trains with other practitioners of the art in various Dojos in Kentucky, Tennessee, and Michigan.
Soke Stines recommended that Sensei Ellis begin teaching and sharing his knowledge, and in 2015 Sensei Ellis began teaching members of the youth group from his church, and that small group grew and is the foundation of Crusaders Martial Arts today.
In 2017 Sensei Ellis began the study of Tokushin-Ryu Kobudo, and Okinawan Weapons System; to continue his Martial Arts Education, all the while, sharing his Martial Arts knowledge and helping others through the Martial Arts Traditions.
I have truly been blessed to be able to both train and witness so many wonderful students. God bless you, and if our paths should cross soon, I hope we both are better for it.
Our School is located in Corbin, Kentucky on Cumberland Falls Highway (25 W), right off the KY 3041 Bypass in Downtown Corbin.
The School itself is located in the Falls Road Plaza, around back on the bottom level.
Falls Road Plaza 1707 Cumberland Falls Highway Corbin, Kentucky 40701