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Our People


"It is our vision that each student, through our teachings, will learn to appreciate the martial arts of all cultures and value what each has to offer. Further, that the student will learn to adapt and modify to his/her own unique skills, attributes, and personality, for no one system, style, or individual possesses all the answers."

- Guro Dan Inosanto


Chris Economides

Four years after my divorce, I'd created a small bucket list of goals I wanted to attain and one of them was to find a martial arts school that taught the systems I was interested in. After doing some due diligence and networking, I found DHMA. With all that being said, I've been training 4 to 5 days a week in multiple arts and, better yet, have a better quality of life both personally and professionally. I've lost over 15 lbs, my blood pressure went down 15-20 points, and at 51 years old, I recently tested successfully for my Level I rank in Muay Thai! At DHMA, you’re worked and trained to your age, ability, and experience. During my time training at DHMA, I've also made very close friends, like a band of brothers, with a camaraderie where we’re all helpful and supportive of each other. In closing, DHMA has been nothing but a life changer for me!


Amy Jordan

The high-level training combined with the close camaraderie found at Dick Harrell Martial Arts are rare and valuable commodities. Dick Harrell’s vast wealth of experience is delivered with a humility that inspires, rather than commands, loyalty and hard work. Under such leadership, my skills have expanded and deepened in ways I could not have predicted when I began attending. In the ring or on the street, empty-handed or armed, on my feet or on the floor, I am rapidly gaining skills that change how I train and think.

I am not alone in finding my training home with Dick Harrell. My partners are engaged in the process, always challenging and helping with a focus on safety. We enjoy each other’s company, regularly going out after practice or getting together outside of class. If you are seeking martial arts training, Dick Harrell Martial Arts is well worth the visit.


Billy Poston

I initially decided to visit DHMA because I was interested in a different kind of workout. Upon meeting Ajarn/Guro/Sifu Dick Harrell, I was surprised at how down-to-earth, personable, and humble he was. I was also taken aback by his passion, skill (I’d never seen someone move with such efficiency, smoothness, and quickness before), and genuine love for what he does. His energy is contagious and after taking a couple of trial classes, I was inspired to immerse myself in all the martial arts programs offered. At the beginning, I assumed that I needed to be fast and strong and try to muscle my way through the techniques, so that I could be “good.” This is not out of the ordinary for many beginners. Ajarn Dick and Khun Kru John “JB” Brown both very quickly, in their own unique and patient ways, explained to me that what really matters is being smooth, relaxed, and adaptable to all different energies that I come into contact with - to fit in with every training partner, and every situation that I encounter. As Bruce Lee said, “Be like water.” Losing weight, learning how to defend myself and others, gaining endurance, and getting stronger both mentally and physically have all been benefits of the training I do at the school on a daily basis. However, what I didn’t expect to gain and what I’m most grateful for are the wonderful friendships and sense of family that I’ve developed there.


Kurtis Cloward

Ajarn/Sifu/Guro Dick Harrell is a man of many titles and, more importantly, many skill sets. When I first walked through the doors of DHMA, I had already been training in Muay Thai and BJJ for several years and competed at the amateur level in MMA. Ajarn Dick's decades worth of martial arts experience and wealth of knowledge in a wide range of arts opened my eyes to new techniques, as well as different training philosophies. My most recent focus at DHMA has been on improving my boxing skill under the meticulous instruction of Kyle Harrell. Whether you have previous martial arts experience or you are a beginner, there is something for everyone at DHMA. Get fit, have fun, and improve your overall well-being at Dick Harrell Martial Arts.


Trent Taylor

The training at DHMA is one of the best available for learning martial arts. The instruction comes from one of the most respected and accomplished teachers available, Dick Harrell. He leads his students and his school with an atmosphere of camaraderie, mentoring, mutual respect and training founded in the pure spirit of the martial arts.

Nathan and Adrian Hayes, Ethos Combatives, Spartanburg, SC

We have been studying JKD and FMA since 1998. In 2013, we started coming to Guro Harrell's academy in order to strengthen and expand our knowledge in these arts. Guro Harrell is and has been a student under some of the best instructors in the world (Guro Dan Inosanto, Sifu Larry Hartsell, and Ajarn Chai Sirisute) and his thoughtful instruction reflects their knowledge. Guro Harrell and his instructors offer world class instruction in JKD, FMA, Silat, and Muay Thai, just to name a few. We wholeheartedly recommend for anyone at any skill level to train at DHMA.

Cameron Pierce

Quality gyms are hard to come by. I myself have driven an hour and a half to Charlotte to attend weekend classes up to four times a month. I count myself very fortunate to have spent so much time over the past four years at Dick Harrell Martial Arts in Charlotte. The instructors genuinely care about the progress, growth, and well-being of their students. If you are looking to lose weight, get in shape, learn a wide variety of martial arts, and improve both body and mind; DHMA in Charlotte has everything you are looking for. They cater to all skill levels, whether you’re beginning your journey through martial arts and fitness, or even getting ready for competition. There’s a reason why so many people gravitate to DHMA on a regular basis - quality instructors and a genuine passion for their programs help their students grow as artists and individuals.