whistlekick Martial Arts Radio - Podcast about Karate, Taekwondo, Kung Fu, Capoeira, FMA - Interviews, Training Advice, Stories, Motivation, Celebrities & More

whistlekick Martial Arts Radio is a bi-weekly podcast interviewing traditional martial artists. We hear their stories and journeys, the way they overcame challenges and learn how to be better people through the guests martial arts experiences. Past guests have included many famous martial artists from Karate, Taekwondo, Kung Fu and other disciplines.
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whistlekick Martial Arts Radio - Podcast about Karate, Taekwondo, Kung Fu, Capoeira, FMA - Interviews, Training Advice, Stories, Motivation, Celebrities & More




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Mar 27, 2017

Sensei Jesse Enkamp is the host of Karate by Jesse and a self-proclaimed Karate nerd.

Sensei Jesse Enkamp - Episode 174

Generations of masters have come before us, and to not use their collective knowledge to improve our current understanding and practice of karate would be foolish in my opinion.

If you spend any time on social media looking at martial arts content, you'll know today's guest. Sensei Jesse Enkamp is the mind behind all of the wonderful material coming out of Karate by Jesse, and he's as passionate a martial artist as we've ever had on this show. The self-proclaimed karate nerd talks about his past, his goals in the martial arts and why he cares so much about what he's doing. If you've ever wondered what makes this guy tick, you're about to find out. Let's welcome him to the show.

Hey, do you like your shins? Do you hate clashing shins when you're sparring? If you do, you should check out our shin guards. Let's be honest, shin guards are sweaty, ours are, too. But, they're less sweaty than others and they actually stay in place. Not to mention we put an extra layer of foam right over your tibia - your shin bone - so you're sure to survive those brutal shin clashes. At events, I demo our shin guards by shin kicking door frames - full force. Check them out today at

Mar 23, 2017

On today's episode, we discuss how martial arts belts are a contradiction - we respect them and hold them as important, yet our treatment of them varies between schools and even within a school

Mar 20, 2017

Coach Greg Amundson is a practitioner of Aikido, Krav Maga & Jujitsu as well as a CrossFit athlete & coach, and author.

Coach Greg Amundson - Episode 172

"Being busy means we're at the mercy of other people. And being busy means that we're reactive. And being reactive is not the path of a warrior."

Coach Greg Amundson's professional resume reads like a modern day James Bond - CrossFit athlete, author, law enforcement, DEA special agent, fitness coach, business owner. That's not even the entire list. Even more impressive, many of those things happened at the same time, and quite a few are still happening. A legend in the CrossFit world, Coach Amundson has deep roots as a martial artist. Roots, according to him, that have given him the ability to live the life he now leads.

An amazing storyteller, Coach Greg Amundson took to our format and ran. Weaving together tales from his childhood, recent past and even appropriate legends he's been known to share in his classes. We discuss what it means to be a true warrior, and what the martial arts mind can accomplish. It was an honor and a privilege to speak with someone I've admired for a long time.


Today we want to remind everyone of all the things we offer - and why we do it. We've never been secretive about our business model, which is all about growing the martial arts industry. See, it's our belief that the more people participating in martial arts, the more customers we'll have. That's why we bring you this podcast, our Martial Arts Memes site and, most recently, Martial Arts Calendar - all for free. As our martial arts realm grows, we all benefit. Thanks for supporting that vision.

Mar 16, 2017

Coach Daniel Wu is an actor, director and former Wushu competitor best known for his role as Sunny in AMC's Martial Arts show, Into the Badlands.

Coach Daniel Wu - Episode 171

"Fighting against somebody and you're backed into the corner it's up to you to figure out how to get out of there. You can give up, you can get knocked out, or you can fight your way back out. And, eventually, you figure out how to fight your way back out, and you learn from that. That is a direct correlation to life in general."

Listeners know I've been a fan of Into the Badlands since it aired. In fact, prior to even airing, I was excited.  Based on what I'd seen in trailers I was talking about on this very show. Here we are, a couple years later and Season 2 is about to air. As part of the promotional efforts for the show, AMC reached out to us and asked us to host Miss Emily Beecham (who plays The Widow) and Mr. Daniel Wu (who plays the lead character, Sunny) on the show. We said yes, of course, and here we are.

Coach Daniel, as he asked me to call him when I explained our traditions and etiquette for the show, didn't shy away from any subject that came up. We had some great conversation about martial arts philosophy and about how martial arts training changes as you age (which was fairly consistent with how we presented it on Episode 160)

Our conversations range from his upbringing to his admiration for the likes of Jet Li, Jackie Chan & Bruce Lee. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.



For photo, video & show notes from this episode and others, please visit:

Mar 16, 2017

Miss Emily Beecham plays Minerva (aka The Widow) on the AMC Martial Arts show, Into The Badlands.

Miss Emily Beecham – Episode 170

I was blessed to have AMC approach us and inquire about interviews for both Miss Emily Beecham and Mr. Daniel Wu. Of course, we said yes, and did what we could to make schedules work (which, as you might imagine, was a bit difficult due to their extensive commitments.) It was an honor to speak with Miss Beecham, and we get some good insight into her character, Minerva, better known as The Widow.

We discuss what it’s like on set, her injuries, the way she views her character, and a lot more. It’s a fun conversation and one that gives you some great behind-the-scenes information into not only her life, but her character and the show overall.

For photos, video, and other show notes on this and other episodes, please visit:

Mar 13, 2017

Sensei Damion Lupo is a long-time Aikido practitioner, author and the founder of Yokido, a fusion of Yoga and Aikido.

Sensei Damion Lupo - Episode 169

"If I'm in on something, you better look out, because I'm going all the way to wherever it is."

It's funny how things happen, sometimes. I was practicing some self-defense with a friend a couple months back and we got to talking about Yoga. Our conversation steered towards the similarities between martial arts and yoga, and the synergy that existed between the two. He mentioned someone who had fused them - a martial arts and yoga hybrid. Just a short time later, completely by coincidence, I was speaking with the very man he spoke of, Sensei Damion Lupo.

All of our guests are different, if you've listened to more than a few episodes, you know that. I enjoy finding common ground with each of our guests, but I also really appreciate where we differ. It's these different perspectives that have the most to offer me, and I found a fair amount of that in my time with Sensei Lupo. With a foundation rooted in martial arts, he views the world - and all its parts - with an attention that few people seem to have.

Did you know we sponsor the website Whenever we find a great martial art meme or someone sends one to us, we post it at our Martial Arts Memes website. Do check it out, have a laugh, and don't forget to send us any that we're missing!


For the rest of the show notes & other episodes, please visit:

Mar 6, 2017

Sempai Alysa Giudici - Episode 167

Remember to always be a role model. To always just be humble and work hard no matter if anyone's watching or not.

It was from a news article online that I first discovered Sempai Alysa Giudici. We've had some younger martial artists on the show, and she certainly fits that profile. Every one of them has a common thread, though - their dedication to martial arts far surpasses their years. Sempai Giudici showed a maturity in the news article that inspired me to reach out. We chatted a bit and I knew that she belonged on the show. Here we are.

Our conversation is both expected and unexpected. On the one hand, we have a passionate martial artist who has no trouble describing their love for what they do. On the other, her focus and dedication are not typical of individuals her age, even martial artists with years of training. She's an exceptional individual and someone I greatly enjoyed speaking with.

We're proud to announce the release of the first edition of the book version of our Martial Arts Event course. How Not To Hold a Martial Arts Tournament is available on Amazon as a Kindle eBook, and soon to be available in print. The advice in our book and course is equally applicable to events of all sizes & all styles. While much of the book and course talks about competition, the instructions will be just as helpful for other martial arts events such as seminars.

Mar 2, 2017

Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon is a martial arts movie release in 2000. The film has had a strong cultural impact on martial arts in the US.

Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon Movie - Episode 166

Starring Michelle Yeoh, Chow Yun Fat, Ziyi Zhang

In this episode you'll learn about:

  • What is Jet Li's connection to the movie?
  • What language issues led them to dub the movie in some areas?
  • What unexpected person edited the subtitles?
  • Who did the stunts?
  • What book series does it come from?
  • What famed director choreographed the fight scenes?

And more!

Feb 27, 2017

Mr. Andrew Freund is a sumo practitioner and the promoter of the US Sumo Open with a background in kendo, tai chi & aikido.

Mr. Andrew Freund - Episode 165

"And when I reflect back on it, if someone had done something only for business, they might get great results, but there would probably be something lacking in terms of integrity, the authenticity and the passion."

It hit me one day that there's a martial art we never talk about in traditional circles. It's rarely in media and yet, it seems like the traditions are older than our interpretations of most traditional martial arts. So it was I went looking for someone we could talk to about the art of Sumo.

When you research Sumo in the United States, you inevitably find information about today's guest. As a sumo practitioner, event promoter, talent agent and so much more, Mr. Andrew Freund has dedicated his life to the art of Sumo. It was very clear after some research that this was the man to have on the show, and I'm so pleased he accepted the invitation.

Did you know we have several different styles of t-shirts available right now? That's right. With sizes that will fit nearly anyone, there's probably one you'd love to wear. Check out our shirts, and everything we offer, at

Feb 23, 2017

We bring back two past guests that are passionate about martial arts competition - Master Huzon Alexander and Mr. Richard Osborn. We chat about what we're doing wrong - and right - in the current competitive landscape.

Conversations on Martial Arts Competition - Episode 164

On today's episode we discuss the following subjects and more:

  • What is the landscape of martial arts competition today?
  • What elements of martial arts competitions are we getting right?
  • Where could we improve with competitive martial arts?
  • How have things changed for the competitive martial art scene over the last few decades?

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You can find Master Huzon Alexander & Mr. Richard Osborn on their previous episodes, linked by their name.

We talk about two individuals we're hoping to have on the show soon - Mr. Ross Levine & Mr. Raymond Daniels.

For full show notes & other episodes, please visit:

Feb 20, 2017

Sensei Ando Mierzwa is a longtime martial arts practitioner and the host of the Fight for a Happy Life podcast.

Sensei Ando Mierzwa - Episode 163

"If your tricks aren't working, you better find new tricks."

My first experience with Sensei Ando was sort of a strange one, at least, not one you might expect. In an effort to promote martial arts podcast overall, we put together a post we titled "Best Martial Arts Podcasts." It's no secret that we're not the only martial arts podcast, and I honestly listen to several of them. I always liked the material Sensei Ando included in his episodes, so we put him on the list.

That led to some social media conversation and a number of emails. A bit over a year later we connected again and decided it was time that we get to put him through our questions. That brings us to now when we have a chance to hear from the man who reminds of the importance of a smile at the end of each one of his episodes.

What are you wearing right now? If it's not a pair of our Cloud9 sweatpants, you're not as comfortable as you could be. :) Find them at, and buy yourself two pairs... otherwise, you're not going to want to take them off long enough to wash. (In all seriousness, this is a complaint we hear from parents that have purchased a pair for their children!)

Feb 16, 2017

25 Drills to Improve Your Martial Arts Forms - Kata, Poomsae, Tul, Patterns, Routines... etc

Martial Arts Forms Drills - Episode 162

On today's episode, we tackle 25 different ways you can improve your martial arts forms. See the list below, but listen to the episode for explanations, notes, and a few tangents.

Practice performing your martial arts forms...

  1. With your eyes closed
  2. Facing different directions
  3. Backwards
  4. Mirrored (Left becomes right)
  5. Both mirrored & backward

For the rest of the list, please visit:


On today's episode, we referenced Episode 158 - Resistance Training for Martial Arts. You may also want to check out Episode 113 - Different Training Environments.

Martial Arts Forms Drills

Feb 13, 2017

Mr. Randy Moy is a practitioner of Chinese martial arts from Massachusetts, with a beginning in Wing Chun and current training in Tai Chi.

Mr. Randy Moy - Episode 161

Martial arts is a life practice. That doesn't mean you practice for the rest of your life, but I think what makes things powerful with me is that it's really incorporated into my life.

Today's guest is a thoughtful martial artist. Mr. Randy Moy struck me from the outset as a very contemplative person and someone with a lot to share. Today's episode brings us inside his life and his transition from Wing Chun to Tai Chi. While today's episode isn't full of high-impact stories, it's easily one of the most quotable interviews we've had.

We've started making some of our podcast episodes available as eBooks. Do you know a martial artist that doesn't have an interest in listening to these shows, but might enjoy reading some of the best ones? Be sure to recommend our books. Our first interview - none other than Bill Wallace - is available here. Find our eBooks on Amazon in the Kindle store.


For show notes and other episodes please visit:

Feb 9, 2017

In this episode, we explore real-world strategies for continuing martial arts training as your body ages. Tips and mindset advice for the older martial artists, or those that hope to be.

Martial Arts Training As You Age - Episode 160

Sleep Smarter Book

Episode 77 - Martial Arts Recovery & Rehab

Martial Arts Training Age Older

Feb 6, 2017

Mr. Jon Call is better known by his online handle Jujimufu. With deep roots in traditional martial arts, he's gone on to fame for his tricking, strength, flexibility, and general athleticism.

Mr. Jon Call aka Jujimufu - Episode 159

I can still get stronger, I can still build more muscle, I can still learn new moves. I'm still 31, I've got more years in me before I see a slower decline.

I first learned of today's guest through an online video someone shared. I was stunned at his strength and flexibility, especially considering his large size. It was clear this was a man with extreme athleticism. While I'm no tricker, I admire the movements many of them are capable of and I see the influence they've had on martial arts competitions.

It wasn't until I heard him on fitness podcast that I learned Mr. Jon Call started his journey as a traditional martial artist. The man many know only as Jujimufu, who gained notoriety on America's Got Talent for doing a split across two chairs while holding a weighted barbell overhead, came from the same beginnings as most of us. When I heard more of his story I knew we had to have him on the show.


For full show notes, with lots of photos and videos and more, check out:

Feb 2, 2017

In this episode, we explore why resistance training is so beneficial in martial arts, how to get started, equipment to consider and what to watch for so you can get the most out of the time while reducing your risk for injury.

Resistance Training for Martial Arts - Episode 158

Topics from today's episode:

  • What is resistance training?
  • Benefits of resistance training for martial artists.
  • Places resistance training shows up in martial arts
  • Why martial artists need more physical conditioning.
  • How often should you train like this?
  • How to avoid getting "too big."
  • How to train and what to train.
  • Training at a gym vs at home and what equipment to use.
  • How to incorporate resistance training into a martial arts class.
  • The importance of keeping the training varied, but not too varied.
  • Why full range of motion movement is important.
  • Training for power, speed, and strength.
  • Why martial artists do well with physical conditioning training.

You should check out the blog post we wrote to accompany this episode at, titled The Top 10 Bodyweight Movements For a Martial Arts Class.

Jan 30, 2017

Sensei Roberto Davila is an Arnis & Jujitsu practitioner from Massachusetts, born in Puerto Rico.

Sensei Roberto Davila - Episode 157

I don't think the guy on the street is going to care if I have injuries or not, so I have to find new ways, as I'm slowing down, you know , to make it more simple and very effective.

I had heard stories of today's guest months before I had spoken with him. Months, even, before a listener to the show suggested him and introduced us. The martial arts world can be very small, and today's interview again reminds me of that. I've known Sensei Davila's instructor for some time, as we were introduced by a few past guests. [His instructor's interview was lost due to technical issues and we're in the process of rescheduling.]

Sensei Davila holds nothing back in this episode as he talks about two very different times in his life. Early on, he was a troubled youth, engaged in some of the worst behavior someone can. After finding martial arts, however, he changed. This dramatic shift is seen in the stories he tells and the emotion with which he tells them. It is an honest, open and thoughtful episode that I hope you enjoy.

Jan 26, 2017

On today's episode, we tackle the importance of having an instructor, no matter what your rank and experience.

Everyone Needs a Teacher - Episode 156

On today's episode, we discuss why it's so critical that every martial artist has someone to learn from - at least one person. Jeremy riffs without a transcript on this installment of the show, talking about some of his varied training experiences and encouraging listeners to take responsibility for their training, even if that makes difficult decisions or having tough conversations.

On this episode, Jeremy references past guest Sensei Earl Smith from episode 17.


For other episodes please visit:

Jan 23, 2017

Mr. Charles Murdock is a Historical European Martial Arts (HEMA) practitioner with roots in Aikido and Karate.

Mr. Charles Murdock - Episode 155

"You know, he always had this idea of these three legs on a stool. You had your work life, you had your family life and you had your training life. And that when something was going off in one of them you could always lean on the other two."

The more time I spend with this show, and meeting martial artists - in person and virtually - the more I realize the lines between location and style are blurry. It is from these blurry lines that today's guest comes to us. Instructor to a personal friend of mine, Mr. Charles Murdock is a practitioner of Historical European Martial Arts - often called HEMA - who started life with Asian martial arts. He talks to us today about those roots and what he's up to today, and how it all comes together.

Today's product of note is a second mention of our new Horizon colorway of sparring gear. We have some great new photos that really showcase the incredible depth and variances in the swirl color process. Check out all four colors at

Jan 19, 2017

On today's episode, we tackle why repetition of forms is important, how all martial artists could improve with a single focus, ways to improve your sparring and how to self-train with weapons.

Question & Answer #2 - Episode 154

In this episode we handle these four questions:

  1. If the newer martial arts forms a student learns contain more complex and advanced movements and sequences, why continue to work on the old ones?
  2. What is one thing could all martial artists improve?
  3. I find sparring overwhelming, how do I get better so it doesn't feel so daunting?
  4. My school doesn't teach martial arts weapons but I want to learn how to use them, at least a little. What can I do?

If you like this format, check out our first question & answer show.

Jan 16, 2017

Miss Elise Lenahan is a taekwondo black belt as well as a black belt in the Marine Corp Martial Arts Program (MCMAP).

Miss Elise Lenahan - Episode 153

Martial arts isn't just about your form or anything like that, it's about your mentality towards it. If you don't come into it with an open mind, I think sometimes it's really difficult to work with other people, because you're like, you're not supposed to do it that way you're supposed to do it this way. But, sometimes you didn't see that this other way has another advantage for somebody else.

Today's guest is someone I've known for years, but she's on here for a reason. Miss Elise Lenahan is the only person I know - though there are certainly others - to have earned a black belt in a traditional martial art (in this case Taekwondo) and a black belt in the Marine Corp Martial Arts Program (MCMAP). On this episode, we discuss what the process of attaining each was like for her, the differences between the two and what she's taken from her varied experience as a martial artist.

Today's featured product is our sparring gloves. When we developed the gloves, we took a hard look at why everyone else's gloves seemed to fail so quickly. Through our better materials, smarter design and extra reinforcement, we've created gloves that simply don't fail. Personally, my pair is now 4 years old. I may not spar as much as some of you out there, but these have had some use. You can learn more about our gloves and maybe get yourself a pair at


For full show notes, please visit:

Jan 12, 2017

Mrs. April Pettengill, Sensei Katie Jordan and Miss Jessica Henderson return to discuss topics related to women's involvement in the martial arts world.

Conversations on Women in Martial Arts: Part 2 - Episode 152

Last week's Part 1 of the two-part series on women in the martial arts was our best-ever debut for a Thursday episode. We knew there was demand for these conversations but we had no idea how much. Thank you to everyone for sharing and listening. If you haven't heard it, please check out Conversations on Women in Martial Arts: Part 1. There's no need to hear part 1 before part 2, as they're completely independent shows.

We hear from Mrs. April Pettengill, Sensei Katie Jordan, and Miss Jessica Henderson along with host Jeremy Lesniak as they discuss a number of topics related to women and gender differences in the context of martial arts. We discuss everything from classes to uniforms to psychology, with the hope that both male and female listeners will come away with a better understanding and give some thought to subjects that affect us all.

Jan 9, 2017

Soke Joe Droual is a long-time martial arts instructor from New York. His background includes karate, jiu-jitsu, Kobudo and kung fu.

Soke Joe Droual - Episode 151

The master teacher is the master student, and we're always learning. And I think that that ties in with the martial arts community realizing that their whole lifetime is learning something that is very old, the traditions are showing respect and kindness to everybody and to themselves. Self-development and that is actually, that grounding and that respect, I think, is at the heart of all martial arts.

Soke Joe Droual comes to us from Long Island, New York. A long-time practitioner and instructor, Soke Joe has dedicated his life to martial arts - and you can hear it in his words. On today's episode, we hear why Soke Joe Droual continues to train after so many years, why martial arts is like music and his views on the personal development side of martial arts.

We've seen a lot of sparring gear head out of the warehouse lately - even more so than the weeks leading up to Christmas. Remember, we have four colors now and not a single pair of boots has that silly toe strap. If you want sparring gear that lasts longer and gives better grip on the floor, whistlekick boots are what you want. Find them online at

Jan 5, 2017

We unpack some of the differences - and similarities - between male and female martial artists with two past guests, Renshi Lisa Magiera and Master Amanda Meltzer.

Conversations on Women in Martial Arts: Part 1 - Episode 150

Over the last few months, we've had some listeners ask for more group conversations. Feedback on the Women in Martial Arts episode was very positive, and some listeners asked for more discussion, with women. We've combined those two ideas and brought back Renshi Lisa Magiera and Master Amanda Meltzer to discuss a few subjects related to women in martial arts. This is not an episode that's "for women," and I suspect it will make a lot of people think about some things, regardless of gender.

During this episode we reference our past episode on Helping People Find the Right Martial Arts School.

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