Shihan Lori Morris
Shihan Lori Morris
Shihan Lori was born in Denver CO in 1963, and spent most of her first twenty years there. She was schooled primarily in private Catholic schools that demanded a very high level of discipline. As a youth she trained in ballet, tap and gymnastics. She performed with her dance troupe in numerous public performances. In gymnastics she excelled in floor exercise routines, securing for herself a first place position in the local tournament circuit. From the ages of fourteen to seventeen she especially enjoyed long distance bicycling. By 16 she was averaging 30 miles per day, five to six days a week.
In her late teens she moved with her family to Arizona. Here she developed a love for swimming and would spend hours every day working on speed and endurance. Sensei spent her years between seventeen and twenty living between the two cities of Phoenix and Denver. An avid reader Shihan Lori would pour over any book on any subject of interest. In 1981 before Sensei finished high school she attended numerous classes at two community colleges in Colorado. Through 1982 and 1983 she attended two more community colleges in Arizona. The main focuses of her studies were and still are ancient and modern religions of the world, calligraphy, history, and eastern and western medicine. In 2016 Lori became an ordained minister.
At the age of twenty she met and married Kyoshi Gary. They spent the next thirty plus years raising their family. Together they’ve owned and operated five of their own family businesses in Arizona for most of those years.
In 1998 Shihan Lori began her martial arts training in Shinpu-Ren with Sensei Drake Sass in Wickenburg Arizona. She would train in this dojo for three years. In those three years she developed a respectable competition standing, continuously placing in the top three of her division at most of the tournaments attended. Shihan Lori currently holds four world titles and various state, regional, national and International titles. In 2001, Shihan Lori, then a low advanced rank, parted ways with her instructor when he changed systems. Shihan Lori chose to continue her training in the Shinpu-Ren system. It was at this time her training was taken over by her husband Kyoshi Gary, and overseen by the head of the Shinpu-Ren system Hanshi John Kraemer. Shihan Lori had already been training and assisting with teaching in the family dojo for some time. This change gave her the opportunity to dedicate more time to this area of her martial arts career. In 2003 she established the Cardio Kick Boxing Class after lengthy training in Cardio and Tae Bo courses and seminars.
At this point Shihan Lori truly began to develop in her abilities as a student and as an instructor. In 2003 Shihan Lori along with her husband Kyoshi Gary and son, Shihan Alex opened their second dojo. This school would train numerous talented karate students and champion competitors. Shihan Lori was promoted to black belt in December of 2004 and in 2006 was especially honored to be promoted to her second dan by both, Hanshi Steel 10th dan, and Hanshi Kraemer 9th dan.In 2016 Shihan received her current 5th Dan rank. In 2015 she was inducted into the U.S.A. Martial Arts Hall of Fame. In 2004 Shihan Lori Developed the Mighty Might’s Class, a class tailored to teach children as young as 3 yrs old the value of discipline, confidence, physical skills and Martial Arts. In 2012 she assisted in creating and teaching the Get K.I.S.S.D. women’s Self Defense Courses. Shihan Lori has found karate to be one of the most gratifying pursuits in her life and will continue to teach and train in the family's dojo.
"Our students inspire me in every class to strive to be a better teacher, and also a better student myself, in and out of the Dojo. I recognize the many obstacles they face that I myself have had to overcome through the years. They have challenged me to continue to find new ways to make the complex seem easy. Especially our special needs students; they’ve gifted me with their presence and helped me to really think outside the box and expand how we teach. I have always had a desire to learn as much as I can in this life, and these students are making sure I don't miss a lesson".