Detroit, MI (program headquarters)
How many years have you worked with Kids Kicking Cancer?
22yrs (Since Day One)
How did you begin with martial arts?
I started activity training in martial arts when Rabbi G. started Kids Kicking Cancer in 1999.
What lessons have you learned over the years from practicing or teaching martial arts?
Over the years I have learned that the punches and kick that people think make martial arts what it is, isn’t necessarily true. The true power and strength of a martial artist begins and end with the mind and a person’s control over it.
What inspired you to join Kids Kicking Cancer as a martial arts therapist?
When I was hired on as a Martial Arts Therapist, I was told to continue doing what I was already doing. At the time I didn’t realize that I was being an inspiration and sign of hope for the other families in the organization at that time. Knowing that everything that I have gone through; all the pain, pokes, chemo, surgeries, etc. can help others inspired me to become a Martial Arts Therapist.
What do you love most about Kids Kicking Cancer’s mission?
I love the opportunity to enter into a family’s life and share my story and my experiences with them and hope that I can make a difference in their life at a time when their world has been turned upside down. And the idea that there are Martial Arts Therapist all over the world that are able to help families with the breathing and meditations that have also helped me is a wonderful feeling.
Do you have a favorite KKC story or experience you would like to share?
That’s like asking someone sitting on a beautiful beach to choose their single favorite grain of sand. So I’ll say the first; back in 1999 my mom was on the phone with my Social Worker from the hospital. After ending the call my mom told me she asked if I would be interested in taking a karate class just for kids with cancer. Growing up loving martial arts and at the time thinking that I wouldn’t be able to do it because of my treatment and after effects, I was filled with joy! Then my mom said, I told her you wouldn’t be interested at all. After all the excitement and joy left my body, my mom smiled and told me to relax and I would start classes soon.
What would your superpower be and why?
I would love to be able to control my breathing and my thoughts in a way that I could overcome any pain, fear, or anger in a way that makes me feel 10 feet tall and bullet proof.
You have your own late-night talk show, who do you invite as your first guest?
My show would be called Mike’s Comedy Hour. A show of music, sketch comedy, inspirational and educational segments, and guest interviews. As my first guest I would have all the members of Sensei Michael’s Crew.