Honoring Martial Arts Hall of Famer Master Percy Brown

Percy Brown is the owner and Head Instructor of Percy Brown’s Institute of Tae Kwon Do. Career highlights included obtaining the 2013 USA Martial Arts Master of the Year, being inducting into the USA Martial Arts Hall of Fame, and once ranked #4 in the world within the Action International Martial Arts Association.

Brown’s lifelong journey in martial arts was born out of the desire to learn to defend himself from an early age. At just six years old, Brown was traumatized after seeing a lynched man hanging, and within that same year he was attacked and robbed while in route to picking up a few things for his mom from a nearby store. From that moment, Brown knew that if he were to survive in this world, he needed to learn to fight; and as he grew older, he learned to do just that.

I know that I was blessed as far as martial arts training because I was trained by three of the best martial artists in the world. Men that it’s almost impossible to get to meet them, let alone go to their schools.

I was trained by the best in Tang Soo Do, the best in Taekwondo, and the best in AiKido. All of them Grand Masters, all of them Korean, and all of them just kind of adopted me and started teaching me their arts… I know it’s a blessing because most time it’s hard to even find these people and that’s another reason why I still teach today,” said Brown.

In 1972, President Nixon opened up communication between the United States and the People’s Republic of China, ending the 25 years of separation between the two countries. The trade sparked Western interest in martial arts and shortly after many Grand Masters and Masters traveled to the United States to begin teaching and sharing the culture of martial arts. “I happened to get in on that because before then I had studied Judo, Karate, Boxing, and Wresting. And when I saw how they were training, I thought I had to get in on that because they were too much advanced over the United States,” said Brown.

In the early 1970s while in Detroit, MI, Brown studied under Grand Master Sang Kyu Shim before and after work for seven years. He later moved to Los Angelos, CA where he met and began studying under his current instructor Grand Master Hee II Cho, the founder of Action International Martial Arts Association.

“The reason I still teach is ’cause if there’s someone coming up like me who really needs a real teacher, I want to be available… And what I want all of my students to know is that I’m still a student myself. I don’t claim that I know martial arts period. I teach what the Grand Masters taught me, I don’t teach what I know,” said Brown.

Brown looks at Taekwondo as a lifestyle and fortunately doesn’t see himself retiring from training any time soon.

Percy Brown’s Institute of Taekwondo currently holds classes on Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday evenings, as well as on Saturday mornings. For more information about Percy Brown’s Institute or to register for classes, visit www.percybrowntkd.com or call (334) 430-4243.

BlackTie Magazine