Running Tiger Academy
(651)760-4193 Call Now!
905 Selby Avenue
Saint Paul, MN 55104
David Meyer

About Running Tiger Academy in Saint Paul, MN

Meet David Meyer

Owner and Chief Instructor at
Running Tiger Academy in Saint Paul
7th Degree Black Belt

Running Tiger Academy's Shaolin Kenpo Karate: "The Art of Life"

The study of Shaolin Kenpo emphasizes 5 key elements: knowledge, foundation (stance and foot position), speed, power and accuracy. As they progress, students develop excellent focus, self-discipline, confidence and respect for themselves and others. At its heart, Shaolin Kenpo is the art of self-defense and practitioners will learn to defend themselves against multiple attackers.

The ultimate goal, however, is to learn not to fight.

Students becomes so proficient at self-defense, that they learn most confrontations do not require a physical response. Hence with the skills learned at Running Tiger Academy, Shaolin Kenpo truly is The Art of Life. Running Tiger Academy teaches Shaolin Kenpo to adults and kids, beginning at age 5.

About Our Founder, David Meyer

Professor David Meyer has been training in Shaolin Kenpo Karate under Great Grandmaster Ralph Castro since 1991. Professor Meyer presently holds the rank of 7th Degree Black Belt. He has also completed the SHARP Instructor (sexual harassment and rape prevention) training through PPCT Management Systems, Inc and is a member of the American Teachers Association of the Martial Arts (ATAMA).

Professor Meyer began studying martial arts at age 17, when he began training in Japanese Shotokan Karate which was followed by Korean Tang Soo Do Karate. His study of Tang Soo Do was interrupted when he moved to the San Francisco Bay Area. In 1991 he met Great Grandmaster Castro and began training in Shaolin Kenpo Karate.

Professor Meyer returned to Minnesota in 1998 and began teaching Shaolin Kenpo through St. Paul Community Education and in 2004 opened Running Tiger Shaolin Kenpo on Raymond Avenue. In 2012 the business became Running Tiger Academy to encompass our additional fitness classes and moved to 905 Selby Avenue. Professor Meyer still regularly travels to the San Francisco Bay Area to train with Great Grandmaster Castro.

Great Grandmaster Ralph Castro has a tradition of awarding a dance, or form, to his high- ranking black belts. . In 2003, Great Grandmaster Castro formally awarded David Meyer the dance, Running Tiger. In 2012, Great Grandmaster promoted Professor Meyer to 7th Degree Black Belt.

The Meaning of Our Emblem

The Running Tiger patch represents our school as well as our lineage. The lightning bolt represents Great Grandmaster’s instructor, William Kwai Sun “Thunderbolt” Chow. The fist, characterized as mountains, is Great Grandmaster’s logo and also represents who he is, "Mountain Meets River". The Running Tiger of course is us. The eagle represents Sibok Joseph Chacon, Eagle Talon, who has been a long-time friend and is now the principal instructor at our studio.

Fitness Kickboxing. For Those Who Want to Lose Weight - Fast.

We are a certified studio. Ours is the last Kickboxing workout you will ever need! Kickboxing is great for Fitness, Self Defense, Cardio Fitness and Muscle Toning. No other workout burns more fat, more calories or builds and tones muscle as well. It’s truly the best fat burning exercise. Most of our members will tell you that this class is way more fun than the gym, fitness bootcamps, personal training, health clubs, trainers and is hands down the best way to lose weight, and get in great shape. Sign up today, you’ll be so glad you did!

A Brief History of Shaolin Kenpo

It is said that Kenpo Karate dates back as far as 520 BC when a prince and warrior of southern India traveled to China to teach the discipline of Zen. At Shaolin Temple, he developed a series of exercises designed to improve the health of the monks. Over time, these techniques developed into a defense art called Chuan Fa, or Fist Method, and gradually the teachings made their way to Kyushu, Japan where the art developed further and came to be called Kenpo, or Way of the Fist.

In 1916, five-year-old James Mitose was sent to Kyushu from his homeland in Hawaii for schooling in Kempo. After completing his training in Japan, he returned to Hawaii and in 1936 opened the “Official Self-Defense” in Honolulu where he taught William (Thunderbolt) Chow. It was Chow who would eventually earn professorship, becoming the founder of the modern day Kenpo System. He would eventually teach 21-year-old Ralph Castro in Honolulu.

In 1958, Ralph Castro moved to San Fransisco, California and with the support of friends and family launched his own school of Kenpo Karate, teaching the forms and styles he learned under Chow. He studied, and taught, and developed as a leading martial artist in the United States. During a 1970s visit to Hawaii, Professor William Chow bestowed Grandmastership upon Ralph Castro, and in 1981, formally sanctioned Shaolin Kenpo Karate as developed by Ralph Castro.

Today, Ralph Castro has trained hundreds of Black Belts in Shaolin Kenpo Karate. It has developed into one of the most popular martial art forms on the West Coast.

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