The Michigan Kali Group


Detroit's Home of the MKG Method of Integrated Martial Art Development

The Michigan Kali Group is Michigan's official home of the MKG Method of Integrated Martial Art, and the MKG International Martial Artist Collective. The MKG Detroit Experience is one like no other in Michigan's martial art and kickboxing industry. Our expert instructors demystify martial art training to create an atmosphere that is fun, welcoming, and ego-free. Class instruction is designed to meet you where you are, and lift you up to new levels. MKG members train to learn self defense, relieve stress, try new skills, get in great shape, and expand their social circles. Ours is a community, not a dojo, with self discovery through martial art at it's center.


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MKG Detroit does not utilize colored belts or traditional uniforms. We train in comfortable workout attire, or fighter apparel when relevant.  While we do not adhere to traditional ranking methods and hierarchy, MKG Detroit does offer voluntary level testing and certifications to assist our members in setting and achieving goals, developing regular training partners, and fully exploring the curriculum found through the MKG METHOD of martial art study.  These certifications are recognized world-wide.

About MKG Detroit's Owners


Married couple Kurt Cornwell and Amariah Houseknecht started MKG Detroit in Fall of 2013 as a pop-up school in the city of Detroit. Classes were originally held in gyms and community rooms in Southfield, Corktown, and the Cass Corridor.

Like many martial artists, Kurt practiced a variety of martial traditions throughout his childhood. After high school, his studies expanded to include massage therapy, healing, and the survival skills of Indigenous Peoples of the Americas. These experiences led him to a group of instructors from the MKG family who encouraged him to pursue his passion for martial art and protection skill development.  The result was a decade-long adventure in Minneapolis, MN, training martial art under the instruction of MKG International's founder, Sifu Rick Faye, as well as teaching weekly classes at the MKG flagship gym, MKG-HQ. It was at MKG-HQ where Amariah and Kurt first met. Amariah, a family social worker and kickboxing practitioner, proved to be the missing piece in what MKG Detroit might one day become. In time, Kurt decided to follow his dream of teaching martial art in the Detroit area, and together, the pair set off to bring the MKG Method to the Motor City.  They now dedicate themselves to the communities of southeast Michigan through the sharing of self defense, fitness, yoga, holistic health, and the MKG Method of Integrated Martial Art. MKG Detroit also regularly partners with other martial art organizations in the Great Lakes region to present workshops and seminars on a variety of topics, as well as its many corporate, law enforcement, and athletic partnerships. Amariah and Kurt now live in Ferndale, where MKG Detroit has it's headquarters and gym.


Rick Faye, world-renowned FMA, JKD, and Muay Thai expert, started the Minnesota Kali Group (MKG) in the garage of his Minnesota home in 1982.  Over time, a growing collection of local martial artists gravitated to Rick's unconventional training style and training space, until the garage was no longer big enough.  Thus, the first gym of the MKG family was born. After regularly training at, and hosting, seminars taught by Guro Dan Inosanto, Ajarn Chai Sirisute, and many other famous martial artists, Rick and the group at MKG began to organically take on their own feel, curriculum, and training modalities.  Applying Bruce Lee's scientific approach to martial art analysis, and with the blessing of the legendary Dan Inosanto, these grass-roots martial art pioneers created a two-fold path to developing both successful fighting skills and grounded self improvement.  This was what would become the MKG Method of Integrated Martial Art.

Many big names in the martial art world got their start through MKG, including many pro fighters, UFC coaches, actors, Hollywood directors and stunt coordinators, and a global network of certified MKG instructors. MKG International, the association that implements the MKG Method worldwide, now has dozens of branches across three continents. MKG Detroit is proud to be one of them.