All of our coaches are certified by MKG International, and/or other relevant sanctioning bodies, and have professional credentials in supportive areas of development. They understand that no two bodies are alike, and will work with you to ensure a positive and successful training experience for you or your family.


Kurt Cornwell

founder, co-owner, head coach

Kurt Cornwell founded MKG Detroit in the city of Detroit in 2013.

Apart from teaching nearly all weekly classes at MKGD, Kurt is a father of two, an acoomoplished public speaker (TEDx, UCLA), published author, media producer, and apparel designer.

kurt has studied martial artistry from around the world for over 25 years. he has taught combat art, combat athletics, self protection, and defensive tactics to professional athletes, law enforcement SWAT teams, women's groups, community centers, corporate employees, families, and adults from all walks of life.  He is also a Security Consultant, Action choreography Consultant for local film, and a Licensed Massage Therapist.

Coach Kurt’s Credentials:

  • Head Instructor: MKG Detroit

  • Level Two Instructor: MKG Method
    (MKG International under Sifu Rick Faye)

  • Instructor: Lakan Guro #5: Inosanto International Martial Art Instructor Association
    (under Guro Dan Inosanto, JKD & FMA)

  • Associate Instructor: Ghost Elusive Combat
    (Elusive Striking for Boxing and MMA under Coach Phil Norman)

  • TEDx Speaker
    Keynote Speaker at first-ever TED Talk Series devoted exclusively to the topic of Martial Artistry, UCLA 2019

  • Host & Creator of SMMASh! Talk Show & Podcast

  • Co-Owner, Creator: MANO MANO Brand: Martial Art Media Production and Apparel Design Collaborations

  • Regular Published Contributor to World of Martial Arts Magazine
    (International Print and Media Periodical/Publication)

  • CMT/CM: Certified Massage Therapist/Myomassologist (IMI 2001)

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Amariah Houseknecht

Co-Owner, Youth & kickboxing coach, yoga instructor, family therapist

Amariah Houseknecht is the Co-Owner, Community Program Director
youth & kickboxing coach, and yoga instructor at mkg detroit. she is a founding instructor, who started her mkg martial arts journey at the mkg international hq in 2007.

amariah is the founder of both Humble Warrior Yoga and M.Body Therapy & Wellness. she is a Clinical Social Worker (LMSW), specializing in providing trauma-focused therapy for families and children throughout Metro Detroit. she has also been a registered yoga teacher since 2015.

Coach Am’s Credentials:

  • Co-Owner: MKG Detroit

  • Community Program Director: MKG Detroit

  • Lead Coach: MKG Kids Program and MKG Women’s Kickboxing

  • Level One Instructor: MKG Method
    (MKG International under Sifu Rick Faye)

  • RYT200 Certified Yoga Trainer

  • LMSW: Mental Health Professional

  • Creator of Humble Warrior Yoga & M.Body Wellness

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Byran joined the MKG Detroit Team in early 2016, after spending over 25 years studying the various martial traditions of southeast Asia. His expertise in close-range martial art, self defense, and control tactics, combined with his calm and patient demeanor, make him a great example of the MKG Method in action. Byran is also a licensed clinical massage therapist and RYT200 certified yoga teacher.

Coach Byran’s Credentials:

  • Level One Instructor: MKG Method
    (MKG International under Sifu Rick Faye)

  • RYT200 Certified Yoga Trainer

  • Licensed Clinical Massage Therapist




Christina das-minta started her martial art journey just a few years ago right here at mkg detroit. a fast-learner and highly-accomplished bodywork professional, christina quickly gravitated to the various methods of movement training offered through the mkg method. as an advanced student at mkg detroit, and a natural educator and leader, chirstina has proven herself an invaluable asset as a beginner coach at our ferndale location.

Coach Christina’s Credentials:

  • Staff Instructor: MKG Detroit Kickboxing, Beginner Programming

  • Therapeutic & Sport Massage Therapist

  • Co-Owner of Niasoma Bodywork, Southfield MI