Sensei Sally Cochran

 
Sally ranks a 3rd Degree Black Belt in SanShinKai Karate, 3rd Degree Black Belt in KinKou Ryu Karate and holds a blackbelt in Tae Kwon Do.  She has studied martial arts most of her life and has a passion for teaching others how to find self-empowerment through developing their belief in themselves and their bodies.
 
In 2014, she ranked first in her weapons division at Nationals.  Since a young girl, Sally has been earning trophies and the admiration of her peers and audiences with her strength, grace and humble spirit.  She is considered family to many dojos in North Carolina and is valued for her contributions to the martial arts.
 
Sensei Sally helped found Greensboro Martial Arts Academy in memory of her teacher, Sensei Richard Gilliland, and his legacy.  She is currently a guest instructor with Greensboro Martial Arts Academy, as she is a full time Horse Riding Instructor at Equine Kingdom Riding Academy.
Click to learn more about Sensei Sally Cochran

Sensei James Howell

 
Sensei James "Tobi" Howell, is ranked as a 7th Dan Kyoshi in Goju-Ryu Karate.  He has trained for over 40 years in his system and is respected for his knowledge, humility and incredible ability to move with lightning fast grace.
 
In his decades of study, he's been blessed to study with some of the great Masters of the century, including O'Sensei GrandMaster Peter Urban, Frank Ruiz, Bill Wallace, Ron Tiganoshi, Owen Watson, Earle Kelly, Terry Pierce, Calvin Lester, Marty Manual and Eddie Andajuar...to name a few on the long list.
 
Sensei Howell has traveled extensively, competing, demonstrating and teaching his art of Goju-Ryu Karate, as well as the many other systems he has picked up along the way, adding them to his knowledge and experience.
 
Sensei Howell offers his expertise in the Cross Training Martial Arts System. 
 
 

Sifu Mark Spence

 
Sifu Mark was born and raised on the Outer Banks of North Carolina along with his siblings, 5 brothers and 1 sister, of which he is the second youngest. He has been training one form of martial arts or another since he was 13 years old and is currently enrolled in the Kinesiology Program at UNCG.
 
He holds instructorship certifications in multiple Arts, including Jeet Kune Do, Boxe Francaise (Savate), and Muay Thai kickboxing.
 
The Lineage of his training is a direct line from Bruce Lee and Dan Inosanto. He has also trained under Armando Basulto (head of the East Coast Savate Federation), Patrick Tray (Certified Directly under Dan Inosanto and Paul Vunak), and Eric Paulson (Also directly under Paul Vunak and professional UFC fight coach).
 
He has been teaching classes, both in self-defense and fitness, for over 6 years, some of his students including boxers, MMA fighters, and even Special Forces operatives.
 
 
Click to learn more about Sifu Mark Spence

Sifu Matthew Staley

Matthew Staley, Shifu is the founder of Central Florida Neijia Academy. He is a disciple of Chang Yukai, Ph.D., Shifu as well as being his master’s representative of Xingyiquan in the West. Matthew is a lineage holder and 4th pin rank in each of the following styles:

Yang Taijiquan-6th generation

Gao style, Cheng school Baguazhang-9th generation

Hebei Xingyiquan-10th generation

Sun Bin Zhaquan Shaolin Longfist-7th generation

Three Step Long Pole-8th generation

Matthew began training in Chinese martial arts in 1995 under the instruction of Long Shi John Riddick (Pai Lum), in which he currently holds the rank of 3rd dan. In 2006 he moved to Greensboro, North Carolina to train with Chang Shifu and was accepted as disciple in 2014.  He is excited to bring the traditional internal and external arts to Greensboro Martial Arts Academy.

Click to learn more about Sifu Matt
Sa Ba Nym (teacher) Cequence Henry  (CC), has been actively involved in the martial sciences since he was the age of 3.  When he was 5 years old, he began his formal, more rigorous training in Kuk Sool Won under Sa Ba Nym Eugene Upshaw, direct lineage from Master Marlin Sims.  By age 10, he was instructing other students and by age 12 leading his own classes.  Sifu CC achieved his black belt under the study of “Sa Ba Nym” Jeremiah Wills, Jr. and is currently under the guidance of “Pu Sa Ba Nym” Douglas Orr.  He is now under the guidance of Si Gun Robinson of Running Fist Kung Fu.

Sa Ba Nym CC  has competed at the National Level, taking 2nd place in Kumite, and 1st place in non-traditional weapons.  His skills have been realized by the older generation martial artists in the martial arts communities and he has made many friends because of his outstanding skill at such a young age.  

He is now an outstanding member of the World Warriors Association of Martial Artists and is often an invited guest to many seminars and events.

He is teaching his blended system of Martial Arts Combatives and is growing new traditions in the martial arts with upcoming generations of martial artists.

Biography Page coming Soon

Sa Ba Nym Cequence Henry

Sensei Diana Smith

Sensei Diana Smith is an expert dance professional who has brought her dance and body coordination skills into the martial arts.  After training in Tae Kwon Do for a number of years, she has branched her area of study into Karate and Kung Fu.  She has become one of our most loved Lil' Dragon's instructors and has been a fantastic addition to our staff of instructors.

Sensei Diana has joined Greensboro Martial Arts Academy as a Sensei and we are proud to have her!  
Click to learn more about Sensei Diana

Sensei Luke Pecor


Sensei Luke has been engaged in martial arts since 2001. He has several years of experience in the following arts: Isshin-Ryu Karate, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, and Tae Kwon Do. He continues his cross-training in karate and BJJ for the purposes of service, self-improvement, and self-defense.

Sensei Luke firmly believes that adherence to tradition must always be balanced by reason and adaptation. He encourages all students of martial arts to take personal ownership of their journey, think critically about their art, and to exchange ideas with each other. He affirms that the martial arts have something to offer each person and that each person has something to
offer the martial arts.

He appreciates all of his teachers, past and present, for the influence they continue to have on his journey. He also appreciates that knowledge flows both ways between mentor and student and enjoys learning from anyone willing to share.

Sensei Luke is the founder of Spirit of Karate and the author of several martial arts related articles.  He currently serves our community as a full-time EMT with Guilford County EMS
More to come about Sensei Luke Pecor

Sensei Michael Johnson

Sensei Michael Johnson is the owner of Greensboro Martial Arts Academy.

It is his passion that keeps the Academy centered and focused not just on  martial art, but on the collaboration between the Martial Arts systems and Masters to ensure that the future generation of martial artists are taught to respect each of the arts.

"Not one art is better than another, it is entirely up to each individual and how well training has been given, received and practiced."

Michael has been training in the martial arts for 24 years and has developed a passion for exploring the similar nature of different fighting arts.
 
Michael has spent the majority of his training in the arts of Kung Fu, Small-Circle Jujitsu, and Modern Arnis, but he also devoted years of study towards Judo, American Boxing, Hsing-I, Baguazhang, Ishin-Ryu Karate, Tai Chi, Goju-Ryu Karate.
 
He shows his gratitude towards his past Masters by giving back to the martial arts community and training students to see the best in themselves, to believe in each other and to honor others with their inner strength, just as his Masters did so for him.  Michael is just one of many martial artists that believe that being a martial artist since youth had saved his life and given him the direction he needed to keep him safe from the world.
 
 
Michael is the head instructor for the Cross Training Martial Arts system and concentrates on the combat aspects of the martial arts in both Karate & Kung Fu
Click to learn more about Sensei Michael