Meet Great Grandmaster Fred Villari
Owner at Fred Villari's Studios of Self Defense in Glendale, CA
15th Degree

GGM Frederick J. Villari

The name synonymous with the growth of martial arts in America

Great Grandmaster Villari is a 15th-degree black belt, the highest rank one can attain in a martial art, and is the founder of the Shaolin Kempo Karate system – an innovative approach that combined Japanese martial arts with Chinese martial arts and Western boxing.

His organization is the world’s largest chain of professional martial arts studios and has been so since its inception more than four decades ago. This method has spread throughout the world as more than 500 schools have been opened that teach his method. He has been inducted into the World Masters Hall of Fame alongside Bruce Lee, Jet Li, and Jackie Chan.

For more than 48 years, Fred Villari has been a pioneer in the martial arts. By bringing many styles together to form an effective unity of disciplines, he revolutionized the way martial artists thought about fighting. Over the years, his schools have brought Asian martial arts to the western world on unprecedented levels. He has developed many of the respected masters teaching today in the United States and Canada, and overseen the training of more than 20 million students.

“Martial arts has become accepted as part of the mainstream of America,” noted Villari who was one of the leading pioneers of the industry.

“I see a very bright future for the sport and innovative ways that are evolving with these challenging times.”

With the threat of terrorism and street crime, there is an even greater need to be prepared to defend yourself. Villari continued, “From the oil crisis to the high cost of living, there is a lot of stress today. Stress leads to bad things. Working out via martial arts helps to relax the student and, at the same time, develops a calm, confidence that they can manage any situation that may come along.”

Growing up Fred Villari studied martial arts with his father. Later he was exposed to and studied several martial arts styles. During this period he trained under Nick Cerio who was a student of Professor William K.S. Chow. Fred Villari’s approach to Kempo was to maintain the style as he learned it through Nick Cerio and add to it, and that is how it is presented in the Fred Villari System today.  Fred Villari realized, because of his varied wealth of experience and his dedication in seeking the ultimate fighting system, that each method offered something unique, and each also had its glaring weaknesses that could make a fighter vulnerable.

Grandmaster Fred Villari concluded that there really were only four ways of fighting.

  • With your hands (punching, striking – open or closed hand) or use of any part of the arms, elbows, forearms, etc.
  • Kicking(with foot, leg, knee, shin)
  • Felling that is to knock an opponent off his feet by throwing, tripping, pulling, pushing, shoving, or scooping him
  • Grappling by either wrestling, holding, breaking, locking bones or joints against nerve centers

Grandmaster Fred Villari realized that the ultimate in self-defense lay not in one way or style of fighting. By combining the “Four Ways of Fighting.” he devised and developed ways to integrate diverse methods of fighting into one, eliminating weaknesses and vulnerabilities. This is the central theory and method behind Villari’s art of Shaolin Kempo Karate. The backbone of Fred Villari’s style is the Shaolin system since he felt it was the best for promoting overall good health, wisdom, and longevity. This system is well balanced, incorporating mind, body, and spirit into one.

Grandmaster Villari promoted his ideas well through solid instruction and modern business practices. Eventually, his method was spread throughout the world. His contribution helped open the way of the Asian martial arts, on a massive scale, to the ordinary layman. Grandmaster Villari is still actively teaching and demonstrating the martial arts in his schools today.

Founded in 1968 in Waltham, MA, Villari’s organization continues to grow across North America as the premier martial arts instruction chain.  Mr. Fred Villari envisioned that martial arts should become a practical vehicle for everyone to learn self-defense, fitness, and healthy activity.  To that end,  we changed the paradigm of the industry from dimly lit dojos in church basements or corners of smelly gyms with questionable instructors to professional retail storefronts in safe neighborhoods with wall to wall carpeting, trained & experienced instructors, separate classes for adults and children, with rates most anyone could afford.

We’ve taught generations of Americans, now it’s your turn

Meet Armen Heroian
Instructor at Fred Villari's Studios of Self Defense in Glendale, CA
Chief Master Instructor, 10th Degree Black Belt

Armen Heroian, at Villari's Martial Arts In Glendale California

Master Armen Heroian

Master Armen Heroian has been teaching Martial Arts since 1975 and is a 10th Degree Master Instructor in Shaolin Kung Fu, Karate, Jiu Jitsu and Kempo. In 1985 Master Armen Heroian was inducted in the Black Belt Hall of Fame. Later he was awarded man of the year from 15th Degree Black Belt Great Grandmaster Fredrick J. Villari and was selected as an honored member of Oxfordïss who's who. In 1992 he became the President, and was promoted to Western Regional Manager of Villaris Martial Arts Centers.

For over 2000 years, Martial Arts has been a proven method to exercise both the mind and body and in this dangerous world, it is an effective way to DEFEND YOURSELF.

For over 40 years, Villari has taught the art of Shaolin Kempo Karate - a refined combination of martial arts techniques that is a highly effective form of self-defense. Years ago, students studied karate to master fighting skills. Today, our students study at Villari's because martial arts are an enjoyable way to obtain the best overall physical workout you can get while emphasizing valuable life skills.

In today's competitive, fast-paced world, Martial Arts training offers you important mental benefits as well as ensuring a healthier, less stressful lifestyle. Villari's Martial Arts in Glendale, CA will help develop your self-awareness, self-assurance, and self-confidence.

Our programs at Villari's Martial Arts in Glendale, CA are individualized to match your physical capabilities in order to maximize your self-defense skills. Should the need ever arise, you will possess a firm understanding of exactly what it takes to both mentally and physically defend yourself or your loved ones.

Enjoy training in these exciting and proven martial arts at Villari's Martial Arts in Glendale, CA! Gain the knowledge, skills, and techniques to protect yourself and those you care for. Successfully engage and CHALLENGE YOURSELF to be better than you ever thought possible.

You will learn, train and work out at your own pace under the guidance of certified, experienced and friendly Black Belt instructors.

WE FOSTER DEFENSIVE ABILITIES, rather than aggressive techniques. Our exclusive Shaolin Kempo Karate system incorporates the best of all martial arts styles for unparalleled physical and mental benefits.

With our system here at Villari's Martial Arts, you may work towards an advanced martial arts rank or belt, or just have fun!

Click on a program to get started today!
Martial Arts
and Teen Martial Arts

How to Get Started

Come join our Glendale, CA facility! We offer programs in Kids Martial Arts, and Adult and Teen Martial Arts . Choose a program that most interests you and take the opportunity to sign-up right here on our site for one of our awesome web specials. Or feel free to give us a call at (818) 957-7544 if you have any further questions. We hope to speak with you soon!