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- Elvis and Karate
Elvis Presley » Article Details

Elvis and Karate

Date Added: May 22, 2010 02:23:08 PM
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Elvis first became fascinated with Karate when he was drafted into the army in 1958. and soon started taking lessons, his first instructor was a German Shotokan stylist Juergen Seydel who taught Elvis off base in Nauheim. Over 15 years Elvis was awarded black belt degrees and was eventually given an honorary 8Th degree black belt. From 1970-1974 Elvis trained with Master Kangg Rhee,he had been recommended by his former instructor Ed Parker from California. During the four years under Master Rhee, Elvis,and all the other students,had to select an animal title by which to be addressed in the training area. Elvis first chose Mr.Panther,but that name was later changed to "Mr. Tiger" because there were political implications associated with the name "Panther". Elvis trained with the other students in a regular training session.The Classroom discipline was so strict that Elvis was allowed the same freedom of training as the ordinary students without the usual press from adoring fans. Elvis helped to teach (the good-old-boys and friends he kept around him as bodyguards) the "Memphis Mafia", some of them were hangers-on taking advantage of Elvis's generosity and fame, karate, and later Elvis employed new members of the Memphis Mafia based on their martial arts backgrounds some were recommended by Ed Parker and other martial arts luminaries. Close friends of Elvis call the four year period the Golden Years the years of peace and spiritual contentment for him. Photos exist documenting that four year period. They are the exclusive property of Master Rhee and are available for viewing at Kang Rhee Institute.The Institute still holds many memories of Elvis. The Public are welcome to share those memories with master Kang Rhee. Elvis opened his own martial arts school in Memphis, The Tennessee Karate Institute, where Bill Wallace was the Chief Instructor.

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