GM Steve Shover
I’ve been practicing the martial arts for over 48 years, including: Tracy’s Kenpo, Kung Fu San Soo, Goshin Jujitsu & Danzan Ryu Jiu Jitsu.
One day, as a young teenager, I was walking home from school on the main downtown street and I heard yelling coming from a window on the 3rd floor. I noticed a small sign that said “Academy of Okinawan Karate”. This is where I met Sensei Howard Flynn and studied Uechi Ryu Karate for over 3 years before Sensei Flynn retired.
While at my 1st Karate tournament I was exposed to Kenpo and was immediately hooked. There were no Kenpo/kempo schools anywhere in my state (Vermont) so I began traveling, visiting and learning from as many Kenpo based instructors as I could find including Kajukenbo with Leonard Endrizzi, Kenpo Karate with Jean Guy Angel, Shaolin Kempo with Fred Villari & Fred Bagley and Tracy’s Kenpo with Walt Peterson, Dave Harris and eventually Al Tracy. GGM Tracy made available to me the complete Tracy system with the revised instructors “Quick Reference” manual and the business manuals. It is so invaluable to have the complete system documented, I will always be grateful to him! I don’t know if students realize how lucky they are to have a Kenpo/kempo school convenient to where they live and to have the learning resources available.
In 1975, I was working-out at a local studio where I had been training in Jang Kwon Do, (a blend of Korean Karate, Aikijutsu & Judo), when a husband & wife came in and eventually asked me to go and teach in their town. I declined at first, as I had no thoughts of becoming an instructor at that time. They said that they would find a location and recruit students. I eventually agreed, however I didn’t really believe they would be able to make it happen. Three weeks later they called me saying that they had secured the high school gym and had 50 students signed up. I’ve been teaching and operating self-defense clubs & eventually studios ever since!
During the late 1970s thru the early 1990’s, I was employed as a bouncer, Police Officer, Deputy Sheriff, and Chief of Security. This provided me with numerous opportunities to practice my martial arts skills, expanding on the Jiu Jitsu of Kenpo as well as from any Jiu Jitsu seminars I could attend & books I could get my hands on.
In the mid 1990’s, after many years of researching traditional Kung Fu styles, I discovered Master Bill Hulsey & Kung Fu San Soo. Traditional & animal Kung Fu styles just didn’t fit my body type or my search for practical Kung Fu. Grand Master Jimmy H. Woo referred to San Soo as “Human Kung Fu”. Finally, I found a Kung Fu style that focuses on practical application. San Soo utilizes long & short arm punches, strikes and kicks, Chin Na leverages, and Shuai Chiao throws. I have been studying San Soo with Master Hulsey now for 20 years.
In 2008 & 09, I studied Siu Lum Pai (Hung gar & Choy Li Fut) with Sifu Ray Hildreth, and when I showed him San Soo he commented that it looked like a “Chinese Kenpo” style.
In 2011, I had the opportunity to begin studying Goshin Jujitsu & Danzan Ryu with Sensei Cory Carlson and continue to this day.
In addition to martial arts & Law Enforcement, I was self-employed for over 30 years as a Farrier (horseshoer), and saddle horse trainer in Vermont, Texas, Oklahoma and Colorado. Also performed cowboy day work, ranch work and competed in rodeo.
2017 - Yondan - Yoshin Ryu Jujitsu by Jeffrey Moore
2016 - Advanced Certification Restoration Therapy by Ted Sumner
2016 – Nidan - Goshin Jujitsu by Cory Carlson
2015 - 10th Dan - Kenpo Jiu Jitsu & Karate by Al Tracy
2015 – Shodan - Danzan Ryu Jujitsu by Cory Carlson
2009 - Master’s Degree - Kung Fu San Soo by Bill Hulsey
2007 – Inducted into Kenpo International Hall Of Fame
1992 – 6th Dan - Chinese Kempo by Robert Fuller
1982 - 3rd Degree Black Belt - Shaolin Kempo w/ Fred Villari & Fred Bagley
1975 – Shodan - Tracy’s Kenpo by Walt Peterson
1975 – Black Belt - Jang Kwon Do by Frank Zaccagnini
1973 – Brown Belt - Uechi Ryu by Howard Flynn
2011 – present: Professional Self Defense Institute - Owner, Grand Junction, CO
2003 - 2011 - Professional Self Defense Institute - Owner, Stillwater, OK
1992 – 2002: Professional Self Defense Institute - Owner, Durango, CO
1985 – 1990: Professional Self Defense Institute - Owner, Burlington & Essex Jct., VT
1980 – 1985: Fred Villari’s Studios of Self Defense – District Manager: Burlington, Colchester, Essex Jct., Barre, Rutland, Bennington, VT. Plattsburgh, Albany, Utica, Syracuse, NY
1980 – 1985: Fred Villari’s Studio of Self Defense - Owner, Burlington & Essex Jct., VT
1975 – 1980: Mountain Kenpo Club - Owner, Burlington, Vergennes & Bristol, VT
United Fist Law Association – Grand Master
Nippon Martial Arts Renmei – Professor of Martial Arts & Police Self Defense
Nippon Martial Arts Renmei – Life Member
National Teachers Association Of Kung Fu San Soo – Member
American Jujitsu Institute – Member
International Association Of Yoshin Ryu Jujitsu – Member
Karazenpo Go Shinjutsu Black Belt Society – Member
Ordonez Kajukenbo Ohana – Life Member
Joe Lewis Fighting System – Member
Graduate Executive Protection Institute