Sherry Pitchford

Instructor of San Ryu Do and Kenpo

Sherry Pitchford is the head of this system, with 35 years of martial arts experience and 20 years just with San Ryu Do, and has instructed both Philip and Sarah to get their black belts after 2 and a half years of study.

Sarah Florence

Instructor at the

Defiance Marital Arts Academy

Sarah Krieger is an assistant instructor at Kurt’s Karate and has been with us since 2014. Since she has started she has been helping teach classes and working on her own requirements as well which include both Spirit Wind Hapkido and I-Ki Ryu Kobujutsu, and San Ryu Do - Sword style. 

Philip L Florence

Head Instructor at  

Defiance Marital Arts Academy

Philip Florence started his training in 2012 in Spirit Wind Hapkido and received his black belt in 2015 under his instructor Kurt Steinke and a board of black belts. Philip Florence is now a 2nd degree black belt in Spirit Wind Hapkido and a 1st degree in I-Ki Ryu Kobujutsu. He also has a Children Curriculum Endorsement which shows that he also studied and was found able to teach the Children classes.  

Justin Flemens

My name is Justin Dane Flemens. I have been studying the martial arts for 16 years. I started studying MMA when I was 18 years old, after spending 10 years in MMA I took the time to study many different martial arts such as Tae Kwon Do, boxing, kickboxing, wrestling, Jiu-Jitsu, and Judo are where I spend most my time. I decided to focus on training and competing more in BJJ(Brazilian Jiuijitsu), going on from MMA with a 3-1 record. I started my training as white belt under Noah Karbach. Noah is a Black Belt under Royler Gracie Black Belt, Jason Fox. I spent 5 months at white belt, competing 27 times with 27 wins in under 2 minutes. I spent 2 ½ year at Blue belt, and another 2 ½ year at purple belt. I competed a lot from blue to purple belt. My competition record is 91 - 29. After 5 ½ years and a lot of competing I am current at my brown belt.

About us​​

Philip and Sarah opened the doors of Kurt's Karate's Defiance branch in 2018, and have been teaching since 2012. In 2020, with the grand re-opening at their new location, they were joined by Justin Flemings, who runs the Defiance Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu classes, to form the Defiance Martial Arts Academy. As this location continues to grow and improve, they hope to expand their curriculum with a variety of offerings.

Kurt Steinke

Founder of the school / Art - Instructor at Ten Sleep Wyoming, & Worland Wyoming

Dojunim Kurt Steinke began training in April 1991 in Montpelier, Ohio under Master Doug Custer in Kong Shin Do Hapkido. Later that same year, Mr. Steinke began cross training in Judo, Jujutsu, Aikido, Aiki-jutsu, and Taekwon-do, hoping to improve his hapkido. The next year, he began training in Kenpo. In December 1995, Mr. Steinke was ranked at 2nd degree blackbelt under Doug Custer in Hapkido, Karate-do, and Kobujutsu, and he began training under Soke Jerry WineBrenner. In 2007, Mr. Steinke was appointed to the successorship of JiShin Ryu Karate-jutsu under Soke J. WineBrenner. Mr. Steinke was subsequently named successor of Rakuten Ryu Ukemi-jutsu and Denju Taijutsu under Soke J. WineBrenner. In 1997, Mr. Steinke developed and began teaching his own gwan of Hapkido named Spirit Wind Hapkido as well as an art known as Shikomi Kikyo Hoshin-jutsu. In 2004, Mr. Steinke was recognized by the Tai Ki Budo Kai as the head of family and founder (Soke Shodai/Dojunim) of both of these styles. He was also named second generation head of family for the three systems under Soke J. WineBrenner aforementioned. Having already earned 5th degree blackbelt rank in Ki Budo Ryu Aikido under Soke Gerry (Gary) WineBrenner and having already completed the Montana Law Enforcement Academy (class 133), Mr. Steinke was trained to take over Soke G. WineBrenner’s aikido-based law enforcement defensive tactics curriculum known as Kei Satsu Kan Do. When Soke G. WineBrenner passed away in 2008, the art passed to Mr. Steinke. Following is a list of Mr. Steinke’s current ranks: Soke Shodai/Dojunim of Spirit Wind Hapkido and Hoshin-jutsu; Soke NiDai of Kei Satsu Kan Do, JiShin Ryu, Rakuten Ryu, and Denju; 5th degree blackbelt in Aikido, Jujutsu, and Kenpo; 4th degree blackbelt in Judo; 3rd degree blackbelt in Pankration and Taekwon-do; 2nd degree blackbelt in Karate-do and Kobujutsu; and 1st degree blackbelt in Jukido.

Soke WineBrenner

Founder of the TKBK

The principles needed in effective martial arts are the same tools you need to be successful in any venture of your life. Learn to keep your focus on the things that carry your forward towards your goals. Learn to move properly to keep your body in balance. Learn to see the good in others and yourself and be thankful for them. Live in Gratitude not anger or jealously. Become the person you have always wanted to be! Of course there is a lot more to it then that but you get the picture.

Background and History

Kurt and Alanna Steinke opened the doors at Kurt’s Karate in December 2011 and held the grand opening in January 2012, with Spirit Wind Hapkido as the main style being taught. Over the next several years, as students gained in rank and wanted to broaden their martial arts horizons, other styles were added to the mix – Jishin-ryu, Hoshin-jutsu, Kobu-jutsu, and more. From the beginning, the emphasis at Kurt’s Karate has always been on “family, fitness, and fun.” Almost everyone in the adult class has a child, spouse, or both also enrolled in classes. The family that trains together, stays together. The school has currently been left in the hands of Philip Florence who is the head instructor.

Kurt’s Karate is really growing. We now have 3 locations! Wow! One in Ohio and two in Wyoming. In Ohio Kurt's Karate of Defiance - Marital Art Academy where we have Sabumnim Phil and Sarah teaching. In Wyoming Dojunim Kurt and Sabumnim Alanna Steinke are teaching at Worland, Wyoming and Ten Sleep, Wyoming. Here in Ohio, Kurt's Karate started at the Napoleon location in 2011 and moved to Defiance in 2018. The two Wyoming locations opened in 2018 as well. 

Defiance Martial 
Arts Academy 

Supplemental Instructors for Defiance Martial Arts Academy

Alanna Steinke

Co - Founder

Sabumnim - Instructor at Ten Sleep Wyoming, and Worland Wyoming

Alanna Steinke has been training in the martial arts since 2009. She is a 3rd dan black belt in Jishin Ryu Karate-jutsu, a 3rd dan in Spirit Wind Hapkido, and a 1st dan in Shikomi Kikyo Hoshin-jutsu.