Master Hughes started in 1985 first studying Taekwondo. Since then he studied many other arts, and is currently certified in Wonjin Hapkido 6th Dan, Taekwondo 5th Dan, and Haidong Gumdo 3rd Dan. He has trained with great masters and students throughout the years seeking truth. Many along the way have guided his path. He has had the honor of participating in the development Wonjin Hapkido, led by Ahn Hyun Hwan. Allen is currently the VP of The World Juntong Musul Federation.
Director Clay has Dedicated 20 years to the study of self-defense oriented martial arts. Styles he has spent significant time studying include: Collegiate-style Wrestling, Society of the Black Lion Kenpo Karate, International Kenpo Karate Association Kenpo Karate, Yoshukai Karate, and Wonjin Hapkido. He has also trained in Boxing, Judo, and Muay Thai. Currently he holds a 3rd Degree Black Belt in Wonjin Hapkido and is the Director of Curriculum at Warrior Way Academy – the headquarters school of Wonjin Hapkido.
Throughout the years he has spent training and learning, a word of wisdom has stayed with Director Clay: “A man [or woman] who has attained mastery of an art reveals it in his [her] every action.” – Samurai Maxim
Instructor Agle began his martial art career at 6 years old, learning Karate. At age 9 he was introduced to Warrior Way Academy where he learned Hapkido and Taekwondo. He is currently a 3rd Degree Black Belt in Wonjin Hapkido, a 1st Degree Black Belt in Taekwondo, and a Brown Belt in Haidong Gumdo.
He counsels, “there’s little more to it all than to learn to love what you do, and do it often. Practice stops being quite as much of a pain when you learn to love it. That and keep your mind open. Learning from other is a virtue in Hapkido.”
Instructor Joseph Godfrey has talents beyond measure. His dedication and love towards the martial world blesses all those around him. He first started his martial arts career at 13 years old, learning in Taekwondo. Over the years he has also spent a significant time learning Wonjin Hapkido, Kick Boxing, Jujitsu, and Kyokushin Karate. Currently he holds a 1st Degree in Guardian Taekwondo, a 2nd Degree Taekwondo Black Belt from the Kukkiwon and Chang Moo Kwan Taekwondo, and a 1st Degree on Wonjin Hapkido which he tested for and received from Grandmaster Ahn Hyun Hwa. Joseph is also a gold medalist in Taekwondo.
Looking back, Instructor Joseph wishes that he had started Martial Arts sooner and had practiced more often because he wished that he could be even better than he is. If one loves something, then one will dedicate one’s life to it.
Instructor Tyler Bird started Wonjin Hapkido in 2010, making him the most recent teacher in this series! He’s easily recognized as our Monday night teacher, one of the best at introducing new techniques to new students. When he was a kid, he took a Karate class though didn’t become serious with martial arts until starting Hapkido. Currently he holds a 2nd Degree Black Belt.
He teaches, “Don’t let you insecurities get in your way. You are much stronger than you let yourself be.”
Instructor Lace Bendheim is incredibly dedicated. She commutes from an hour away just to practice and teach us! She started Hapkido at age 15 and has climbed the ranks fast. She currently holds a 2nd Dan in Hapkido, and 1st Dan in Haidong Gumdo. Haidong Gumdo is a Korean sword art, which you’ll find her doing before the Adult Class every Tuesday.
Before she started martial arts, she wished she knew “how much it would and does shape my life into who I am today.”
Instructor Katelyn Erickson has studied Hapkido on and off for the past 10 years. She was first introduced by her two older brothers when they participated in a Hapkido test. She wanted to train but wasn’t allowed to until she was 8 years old. She was so excited that she counted down the days till she would be able to join. She also took up Taekwondo and Haidong Gumdo, currently with Yellow Belts in each style. She is also a 2nd Degree Black Belt in Wonjin Hapkido.
As a word of wisdom, Instructor Katelyn says, “I wish I knew how much Hapkido would impact me, give me focus, discipline me, and build my confidence. Over the years I’ve been off and on training [and] I always came back because I wanted to learn more and to learn how to become a better person. And now I’m learning how to become a leader. it is good to learn how to lead all the people I work with. Hapkido is a major part of me, and the instructors and students here are my family. I wouldn’t be who I am today without Hapkido.”