Mike Rhoads

Mike Rhoads has been in business in Gaston County owning and operating as Gaston Academy of Martial Arts since 1994. He became Mike Rhoads Karate over three years ago, placing emphasis on the name of the Master who developed a majority of what is taught now. Mike Rhoads has over 25 years experience in Martial Arts, studying with the best in the business: world renowned Rickson Gracie, Carlson Gracie, Grandmaster Wally Jay, Grandmaster Bobby Toboada and Soke Irwin Carmichael. He has studied Kempo, Tae Kwon Do, Brazilian Jui Jitsu, Balintawak Arnis, Krav Maga, Boxing, and Wrestling. He has toured internationally and is 2004 recipient of the World Head of Family Sokeship Counsil Hall of Fame Award for his practice in the Balintawak Escrima style. He is a certified instructor of that style under the direction of Grandmaster Toboada. Master Rhoads is a 6th degree black belt in the Shorinji Tetsukendo Kempo style of martial arts, devoting his career to teaching the discipline and training the youth of our community. Mike has four children. His hobbies include travel, cooking, biking, camping, and hiking.

Danielle Caple

Danielle Caple began training with Karate Evolution in 1994 at age 5. She received her Shodan Black Belt by age 13 and her second degree at age 15 in 2004. Danielle is currently a lead instructor with Karate Evolution training for her Sandan rank. She is also a graduate of North Greenville University. Danielle and her husband Kalen reside in Boiling Springs, SC. Her hobbies include karate, guitar, surfing, long boarding, and woodworking.

Michael Rhyne

Michael Rhyne was born and raised in Gaston County. He joined the Navy out of High School and spent more than two and a half years in the Seal Teams. After his Navy career, Michael continued to explore the martial arts. He earned his Shodan Black belt and is currently an instructor with Karate Evolution. His hobbies include archery, hunting, firearms, weapons training, and grappling. Michael is married and has three children.

Dr. Randall Gehle

Dr. Randall Gehle has over 20 years Martial Arts experience in 3 different styles. He is a 3rd degree black belt in the Shorinji Kempo style. Dr. Gehle is a practicing family physician in McAdenville. He served in the Navy as a Medical Officer and with the Marines during the first Gulf War. After Navel service he and his wife Annette settled in Belmont and have been here over 12 years. Interests include karate, woodworking, travel, cooking, and college football (go Gators).

Randy Gutierrez

Randy Gutierrez has been involved in martial arts since the age of 10. He has trained in Tae Kwon Do, Tang Soo Do, Japanese GoJu, and Balintawak Arnis as well as Shorinji Kempo. He is a veteran of the 1st Gulf war. His focus is mainly competitive sparring and grappling. Hobbies include mountain biking and snow boarding. Randy is married to wife Guilliana. They have one daughter, Stella.

Abigail Cross

Abigail Cross has been training at Karate Evolution for five years and is currently training for her Shodan Black Belt. She has also been a member of the leadership team since early 2008. Abigail is fourteen years old and a freshman at Forestview. She is also a serious ballet student at Gaston Dance Theatre and hopes to one day dance professionally.

Ely Rhoads

Ely Rhoads has been involved in martial arts since he was three years old. He earned his Academy Black belt with Karate Evolution at age seven. In addition to karate, Ely is also a member of boy’s team gymnastics under Coach Tom Lombardo at the First in Flight Gym in Gastonia, NC. Ely is in the 5th grade at Hawks Nest Intermediate School. He assists Instructors in classes when needed

Joseph Difini

Joseph Difini began his training with Karate Evolution at age 5. Joseph earned his Shodan Black belt in 2008. Joseph is currently a student at UNC Wilmington. His hobbies include basketball, outdoor activities, and spending time with family.