Monroe Karate Training Center

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Jodi Berry Karate Instructor

Jodi Berry in Monroe - Monroe Martial Arts

Jodi Berry

I grew up in Ypsilanti, MI, my brother and I went to a pretty rough high school. I didnÆt mind it though. I just stuck with my friends and you learned to not look certain people in the eye because that would start a fight. There were always fights in the halls and girls being pushed into the boyÆs bathrooms. Many Fights on the school bus and at the bus stop.

When I was 6 years old my dad was looking at the newspaper. I was playing outside in our yard with one of my friends. My dad called me over and asked me if I wanted to join karate. I said sure (not knowing what karate was). One evening my Dad, Brother and I all walked into a middle school gymnasium. When we entered I looked around and said ôDaddy, where is the swimming pool?ö I thought karate was swimming. IÆm not sure why. Now that I look back I think itÆs because I had many swimming lessons. When I first began to swim, I was classified as a guppy then graduated to a shark. I guess I thought karate was the next level. Anyways, when I got to the gym with my dad and brother I was NOT happy. I didnÆt want to join! Well, when the instructor walked out I decided I will give it a try and I loved it! It was so cool to do an activity with my dad and brother.

When I was in third grade a girl named Jennifer was constantly picking on me. Calling me names and trying to scare me. At recess she and a big group of girls surrounded me. She wanted to fight me. I was taught not to fight unless I had to defend myself. Well, all the girls were yelling out ôfight fight fightö and Jennifer swung at me. I moved out of the way and punched her right in her lip, giving her a fat lip. We both had to go to the principalÆs office and miss the assembly we had that day. Soon after that she and I became good friends.

I learned a lot growing up in the martial arts. Self-esteem was always a huge issue for me. I was a chubby kid and I didnÆt feel very good about myself. I remember one day, I was on the bus coming home from school and this one guy, I had a huge crush on called out my name. I turned around and looked at him and he said ôJodi your fatö I said with tears in my eyes ôI know.ö I turned around and sunk down in the seat. I was so sad. IÆd come home and cry to my Mama that kids were calling me fat.

Because of the martial arts training the way I felt about myself (self-esteem) rose. Soon after, when I saw someone being picked on at school, IÆd go over, stick up for them and become their friend because I knew how it felt to be belittled.

Growing up in the martial arts was not easy at times. Having your dad as the chief instructor was fun but challenging too. He was harder on his own kids than other students. I think because he expected more out of us. If we had the choice my brother and I would have quit every belt, but my dad would encourage us to stick it out. Eventually he said ôyouÆre going!ö

I am so thankful my dad pushed me. IÆve heard him tell many parents over the years, ôif you let your children quit, you teach them how to become quitters.ö Our martial arts school is about fitness, self-defense, family and fun! I am so blessed to teach at Monroe martial arts. When my daughter is a little older I hope to be a bigger part of the school than I am now. I plan to enroll her into the little ninjas program when she is 3 years old.

Black Belt Certifications:

  • Bo Dan 1994
  • 1ST Dan 1995
  • 2ND Dan 2003
  • 3RD Dan 2006
  • 4TH Dan 2011

Certified in these Fitness Classes:

  • Cardio Kickboxing
  • Cycling
  • Step Aerobics
  • Hi-Low Impact Aerobics
  • Fit Ball
  • Stretch & Tone

Main Instructors:

  • Grandmaster Kwang Choi: Choi Kwang Do
  • Master Michael Coleman: Choi Kwang Do
  • Master Gene Duncan: Choi Kwang Do
  • Master Dwight Werner: Kai-Zen Do


  • Certified in NADIA personal training at the Monroe YMCA in 2000
  • Graduate from IreneÆs Myomassology Institute in 2002

Monroe's only state of the art Karate Facility

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