About the Instructor
Kyoshi Stephen (Steve) Phillips was born in 1971 in New Jersey. He started training in the martial arts at the age of 11 and has trained under several great masters to include Howard Moore, Phil Maldonato, John Austino Sr., Ric Pascetta, Grand Master Peter Urban, and Grandmaster Bill "Superfoot" Wallace. In 1989, Kyoshi Phillips graduated high school and joined the U.S. Army as a Military Police Soldier. During his military service he traveled overseas and continued training and teaching fellow soldiers in the martial arts.
Upon returning from military service, Kyoshi Phillips reunited with Kyoshi John Austino Sr. and continued his training. Kyoshi Phillips along with Kyoshi John Austino Jr. started competing heavily in the Delaware Valley tournament scene. Both Black Belts were highly respected and successful competitors who compiled very successful tournament careers. Kyoshi Phillips has competed locally and nationally in tournaments; he took many first place trophies in Fighting, Forms, and Weapons Divisions. At the rank of First Degree Black Belt, Kyoshi Phillips competed in New York Cities "All GoJu Invitational Tournament" and dominated his division by taking First Place in Fighting and Kata (Forms). At the Rank of Second Degree Black Belt, he was giving well named Masters of all styles a run for their money. Kyoshi Phillips also was listed as one of the best heavy weight fighters for the U.M.A.R.A Tournament organization. In 1993 he was awarded the Black Belt of the year award from Kyoshi John Austino Sr.
In 1994, Kyoshi Phillips opened his first karate school in Woodbury, New Jersey. He soon expanded and moved to a bigger facility in the Gibbstown area where he continued to grow his school. During this time frame he began to study Okinawan Weapons extensively. He then had a transfer from his employer and turned the daily operations of the school to one of his Black Belt assistants. While away he studied Jeet Kune Do, Muay Thai, and Kali. Kyoshi Phillips eventually was transferred back to the area and continued training until he relocated to Conway, South Carolina in 2002.
Kyoshi Phillips then went to work for the Sheriff's Department and was also deployed to Iraq with his Military Police Unit. Upon returning from Iraq, he went to the police academy and opened Fighting Tigers Martial Arts Academy (Now the Kei Shin Karate Academy) in Conway, South Carolina. He currently works as a police officer (Detective) for a local agency and continues to train in the martial arts. He has been certified by the South Carolina Criminal Justice Academy as an instructor for Defensive Tactics and Ground Defense. He has been certified in the P.P.C.T (Pressure Point Control Tactics), Handcuffing, Spontaneous Knife Defense, and Weapons Disarming. He was also certified by ASP to teach their Expandable Baton System.
In 2005, Kyoshi Phillips received his Sixth Degree Black Belt in American Goju under John Austino Sr. Also in 2005, he started training in Gracie Jiu-Jitsu under Relson Gracie Black Belt representative Jay Dennis. At the age of 34, he entered the South Carolina State Grappling Championship which was his first Jiu-Jitsu competition and received a Bronze Medal. He competed as the oldest person in his division. Kyoshi Phillips has competed in Karate, Jiu-Jitsu, & Cage Fighting Events. He has helped martial artists of all disciplines to excel. He was the head coach of the Fighting Tigers Cage Fighting Team and has trained many of your local mixed martial arts coaches & fighters. Since then he has received his Purple Belt in Jiu-Jitsu and also a Black Belt in the Bill "Superfoot" Wallace Kickboxing System.
In 2012, Kyoshi Phillips graduated from Liberty University with a Bachelor's Degree in Criminal Justice. He believes that learning is a necessary component of life. Also in 2012, Kyoshi Phillips was promoted to Seventh Degree Black Belt and also named as the South East Director of NAGIA (North American Goju Instructors Association). Now in his Forties, he has trained in the martial arts for over 30 years. He continues to pass his knowledge over to his students. He specializes in teaching people to be confident, fit, self-disciplined, and focused! He wants you to be successful not only in Martial Arts but in Life!!!
Now he wants to train you!
Now he wants to train you!