Grandmaster Clifford C. Crandall, Jr.
Founder of the American Martial Arts Institute
Grandmaster Crandall’s Training and Martial Arts Certifications
Grandmaster Clifford C. Crandall, Jr. is the head and founder of the American Martial Arts Institute and the American Eagle Style of martial arts. In 1996, he was promoted to the title of Grandmaster (10th Dan) by the Grandmaster of the Tong Leong Gwo Shuh Goan International Organization, Headmaster Manuel Agrella, representing the Soke Council of Grandmasters on the East Coast.
Grandmaster Crandall has more than 45 years of martial arts training which includes professional instruction in traditional Korean, Japanese, and Chinese styles, which allowed him to formulate the American Eagle Style of martial arts.
Grandmaster Crandall’s primary heritage is as a Korean stylist (Tae Kwon Do); he was certified as a sixth-dan and subsequently a Master Instructor in American Kang Duk Won by Grandmaster Raymond P. Arndt. Grandmaster Crandall and Grandmaster Arndt remained close friends until Grandmaster Arndt passed away in 2010. Additionally, Grandmaster Crandall was certified up to fourth-dan in Kang Duk Won under Master Kum Chun Kim, and trained under Grandmaster Park Chul Hee when Kang Duk Won was still part of the Moo Duk Won Association.
Grandmaster Crandall has trained in three Japanese styles. In 1984, while an instructor director in Kang Duk Won, Grandmaster Crandall traveled to Japan and trained under Master Sekichi Toguchi, who was the head of Okinawan Goju-ryu.
Grandmaster Crandall is also the Headmaster of the Iaido (sword) style Takenouchi-Hangan-Ryu-Matsuno-Crandall. Headmaster Crandall's certified position and title were bestowed by his instructor, Headmaster Tsuneyoshi Matsuno during a traditional ceremony in Japan in June 2002. Headmaster Crandall began training under Tsuneyoshi Matsuno in 1985. The passing away of Headmaster Matsuno in February of 2005 made Headmaster Crandall the head of this 300-year old traditional samurai iaido style for the world.
In 2006, a year after Headmaster Matsuno’s unexpected passing, Grandmaster Crandall’s longtime martial arts friend, Master Fumio Demura, wrote him a letter offering the opportunity to become his student in the area of Batto-do. Grandmaster Crandall accepted this invitation and is now one of Master Demura’s students in the Society for the Preservation of Toyama-Ryu Batto-do.
Prior to becoming a full-time, professional martial artist, Grandmaster Crandall was a superintendent of schools, high school principal, elementary school principal, and classroom teacher in the state of New York. Grandmaster Crandall left the public education profession in 1984 to dedicate himself to the martial arts full-time. This allowed him to travel to 22 different countries and train with martial artists around the world. It was during this time, through hosting the Martial Arts Today television program, that Grandmaster Crandall had the opportunity to train in China under Xiang Li Li in Tai Chi Chuan.
While Grandmaster Crandall has trained with knowledgeable and skilled martial arts from around the world, the individuals mentioned above are the primary instructors under whom Grandmaster Crandall has trained. Copies of his certifications may be found on public display at all full-time locations of the American Martial Arts Institute.
Grandmaster Crandall’s Publications
Grandmaster Crandall has made numerous contributions to the field of martial arts. In 1985, after training extensively with the tonfa in Japan under Master Toguchi, Grandmaster Crandall produced the instructional video tape The Tonfa: An Extension of the Mind and Body. In 1986, he published a book by the same name.
In the years following he wrote two more books, The Best Handbook to Secure Living (now out of print), and the American Eagle Style Instructional Textbook. The textbook is 410-pages in length and documents American Eagle Style including Basic Katas 1-3, Pal-Gwes 1-8, and 50 additional black belt katas.
Published in 1985. 30 min.
1st edition published in 1996.
2nd edition published in 2002.
3rd edition published in 2012.
In addition to authoring these books, he has produced several instructional videos on VHS and DVD. These have included: Women’s Self-Defense, Volume 1 (with the late Master Jill Crandall), The Best Tournament Tonfa: The Swirling Dragon, The Naginata at its Best, Just Get Away: Escape Techniques for Teenager Girls, Children’s Self-Defense, Volume 1 DVD, and Learn Takedowns Plus Counters Against a Knife and Gun DVD.
Grandmaster Crandall has also written numerous articles including the monthly newspaper column “Secure Living,” an article on Karate Training Camps, published in the 1985 Yearbook edition Black Belt magazine, and others.
Grandmaster Crandall has many adult black belt students who he annually certifies as instructors in his school. Grandmaster Crandall has made it possible for some of these men and women to make a contribution to the martial arts and has co-authored and co-produced projects with them. Among these are the books Be Safe Physically and Mentally with the Crandall System (with Master Eric Stalloch), Takenouchi-Hangan-Ryu-Matsuno-Crandall Iaido Workbook Text (with Kyoshi Nathan Morris), Superkick Instructional Workbook (with Master Cheryl Freleigh), Moving Beyond Disabilities (with Master Linda Moller), Leadership Piece by Piece (with Master Stalloch), and he edited and supported the publication of the Julia and Tiger Lily Adventure Series of children's books (by Mrs. Amanda Crandall and illustrated by Miss Sabrina Crandall), High Block for Hazards, Down Block for Defense, and Center Kick for Confidence. He also co-authored the 280-page American Eagle Cane Style Instructional Textbook. In addition he produced the DVDs American Eagle Style Self-Defense, Volume 1 (with Master Nicholas Chuff) Practical Cane Self-Defense, Volume 1, Cane-Fu: Moving Beyond Disabilities, and the Eight Instructional DVDs of the American Cane System Ranking Series (with Master Eric Stalloch and Mrs. Lynn Jessee). He also co-found the SecureLivingOnline.Com with Master Stalloch, the first website to offer downloadable, instructional self-defense videos and now focused on personal safety seminars and consulting.
1st edition published in 1986.
3rd edition released in 1996.
Today, Grandmaster Crandall continues to support and supervise the writing and production of instructional martial arts resources by his black belts.
Grandmaster Crandall’s Television Programs and Films
in 1987, Grandmaster Crandall founded the television series called the Martial Arts Today. The show aired on NBC affiliates throughout Central New York, New York City, and by satellite in Canada. As the Producer and Host, he traveled to over 22-different countries and covered marital artists and their schools. Some of the guests interviewed on his show included: Tadashi Yamashita, Fumio Demura, Bill Wallace, Raymond P. Arndt, Hidy Ochiai, Mark Dacascos, Frank Dux, Tsuneyoshi Matsuno, Ernie Reyes Sr., Ernie Reyes Jr., Joe Lewis, Ron Van Clief, Dennis Brown, Jean Frenette, and many others.
In 2008, Grandmaster Crandall was approached by the station manager of an ABC affiliate in Central New York and asked to host a new television show focused on community safety. This show was called Safety and Awareness Today and featured Grandmaster Crandall interviewing professionals and experts in various fields regarding safety. Topics ranged from rock climbing, skydiving, scuba diving, laccrosse, motor cycle riding, and many others to self-defense segments for children, women, seniors, and more.
In addition to hosting two television programs, Grandmaster Crandall has served as the Central New York Spokesman for the McDonalds corporation in the area of community safety for children. Appearing in commercials along side Ronald McDonald, Grandmaster Crandall helped to teach children how to "BE SAFE!" Grandmaster Crandall has also created public service announcements on a variety of other topics that have aired for over 25 years.
In film he was a stunt man for the 20th Century Fox release ONLY THE STRONG starring Marc Dacoscos. In the film, Grandmaster Crandall portrays a teacher who is assaulted and thrown down a flight of stairs.
Grandmaster Crandall’s Educational Programs
Grandmaster Crandall's educational background includes a M.Ed. in Educational Administration from St. Lawrence University and New York State permanent certification for school District Administrator, Administration and Supervision, and Teaching-Social Studies 7-12. Before becoming a full-time martial artist, Grandmaster Crandall served as a Superintendent of Schools, High School Principal, Elementary School Principal, and Classroom teacher. He has also taught college credit courses at Herkimer County Community College in central New York. His unique combination of professional experience and traditional martial arts training has allowed him to create several educationally sound martial arts and community safety programs.
Among these programs are:
Tot-Awareness. Grandmaster Crandall designed this program for children (ages 3-5) and their parents that educate them on things they can do to prevent child abductions, find help when lost, and be safe in their daily lives. This program has been taught at special seminars, at YMCAs, and other organizations. The Tot-Awareness program was later developed into two related programs: the Superkick program and the Crandall System (level 1).
Superkick. Grandmaster Crandall developed the Superkick program as a martial arts class adapted to meet the needs of 3-5 year old children. This program includes educational methods, behavioral and informational objectives, and an organized process to help improve the self-confidence and awareness of children.
Women’s Self-Defense Seminars. Grandmaster Crandall has developed a self-defense program to teach women self-defense. This program is now also level 3 of the Crandall System. It has been taught at women’s organizations, college campuses, and rape crisis centers for over 25 years. Grandmaster Crandall has documented aspects of this program in the instructional video Women’s Self-Defense, Volume 1 and the book Be Safe Physically and Mentally with the Crandall System. He continues to create instructional resources for women on SecureLivingOnline.com. The women’s self-defense program includes information about home security, assault and rape prevention, traveling and self-defense techniques.
Child Abduction Prevention and Teenage Escape Techniques for Educators. Utilizing his professional background in the public education system and his years of experience as a martial artist, Grandmaster Crandall has developed and presented a system of non-aggressive escape techniques for students in grades K-12, with different techniques and information presented for different, age appropriate needs. These techniques are effective and can only be used to escape (break free) from an assault situation; they cannot be used to instigate or bully others. This program has been taught to physical educators who have become certified to teach their classrooms these techniques and concepts. It has also been taught directly to the students. Several school districts across New York State now use this program as the foundation of their child abduction and prevention education curriculum.
Crandall System. The Crandall System has four levels. Level 1 is for Children. Level 2 is for Teenagers. Level 3 is for Women. Level 4 is for Senior Citizens, but includes important information for all adults. Grandmaster Crandall organized this system with an educational philosophy, objectives, standardized (and effective) self-defense techniques, and a core of safety information that will make people of all ages more secure in their daily lives. A large portion of this program is documented in the book Be Safe Physically and Mentally with the Crandall System.
These are only a few of Grandmaster Crandall’s programs. In addition, he has presented to hospitals and health care staffs, senior citizen groups (cane self-defense and more), taught college courses, and more. For more information about these programs, contact the main location of the American Martial Arts Institute.
Grandmaster Crandall Promotes Positive International Relationships
In addition to traveling around the world as host of the Martial Arts Today Show, Grandmaster Crandall has led several martial arts teams on international cultural exchange tours.
In 1994, he coached and led the first American martial arts Team to perform by Government invitation for the People's Republic of China. The team carried letters from President Clinton, Vice President Gore, and many other Senators and Congressmen. The presidential letter was read before each performance. The team’s hope was to demonstrate good will and American friendship to the people of China through the common interest of the martial arts. A 30-minute documentary was produced to chronicle the trip and its historic significance. State Legislative Resolution #55 was passed by the New York State Assembly in recognition of Grandmaster Crandall for promoting positive international relations between America and China.
In 1996, Grandmaster Crandall coached and led the American team that competed in St. Petersburg, Russia for the International World Tournament. The team took 13 medals (3 gold, 4 silver, and 6 bronze). It was at this event that Grandmaster Crandall was bestowed the title of Professor of Martial Arts by the International Martial Arts College, whose main office is in St. Petersburg, Russia.
In 2002, Grandmaster Crandall led the American Iaido team that trained in performed in Kobe, Japan. A New York State Legislative Resolution #5333 was adopted in the Senate on May 7, 2002, as well as a as well as a Senatorial Citation being issued on June 30, 2002, both in honor of the positive international relations that Grandmaster Crandall and his martial arts team had established in their Japanese exchange.
During this trip to Japan Grandmaster Crandall was promoted to Headmaster of Takenouchi-Hangan-Ryu-Matsuno Iaido by Tsuneyoshi Matsuno. This event was filmed and the trip was featured in a documentary that aired titled Passing of the Sword.
In 2005, Grandmaster Crandall led a similar team of American Martial Arts Institute black belt students and instructors to demonstrate and teach in Australia. In 2008, he coached and led the American team that performed in Venice and Rome, Italy. In 2010, he led an Iaido team to compete in Master Fumio Demura’s prestigious Batto-Do/Iaido Competition in Costa Mesa, California.
Future demonstration exhibitions and cultural exchange tours are currently being planned under Grandmaster Crandall’s supervision.
In 2010, Grandmaster Crandall was featured demonstrating cane self-defense techniques in the March issue of Inside Kung-Fu Magazine with a three-page article titled Cane-Fu. The article also featured Grandmaster Mark Shuey (“The Cane Master”).
In 2009, Grandmaster Crandall was featured on the cover of Action Martial Arts Magazine with a 3000-word story title: A Global Grassroots Martial Arts Ambassador.
In 1998, Grandmaster Crandall set a Guinness Book World Record for breaking a board while skydiving. This was done in conjunction with a campaign he organized to raise awareness about child abductions and the need to educate all children.
In 1993, Grandmaster Crandall placed 3rd in the master’s division and 3rd in novice division in the 10th Annual 1993 A.N.P.P.C. All-Natural Eastern States Bodybuilding Championships.
Grandmaster Crandall holds several professional licenses including:
United States of America Aviation Administration Sport Pilot Licenses (New Regulations 2005)
Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI) Certified Open Deep Water Diver
United States Parachute Association (USPA) Skydiver D-Licensed
Some of Grandmaster Crandall’s Certifications Include:
July 3, 2002 - Head Master of “Takenouchi-Hangan-Ryu-Matsuno-Crandall” Iaido Internationally. Inducted into the Action Martial Arts Magazine International Martial Arts Hall of Fame.
Promoted to the title of Instructor and grade of 2nd-dan in Iaido school of Takenouchi-Hangan-Ryu Matsuno by the school head and Master Instructor Tsuneyoshi Matsuno.
Bestowed the title of “Professor of the Martial Arts” 6/ 29/1996, St. Petersburg, Russia
Promoted to the Title of Grand Master 10th Dan May 11, 1996 by the Grand Master of the Tong Leong Gwo Shuh Goan International Organization Headmaster Agrella, representing the Soke Council of Grandmasters.
Founder of the American Martial Arts Institute. The “American Eagle Style” of martial arts.
Certified Master Instructor By Grandmaster Raymond P. Arndt on June 1, 1995 in American Kang Duk Won.
American Kang Duk Won Association, Rank certification for Black Belt - 6th Degree.
Law Enforcement Defensive Tactics School instructor certification – 1985
Law enforcement and police instructor for PR24, Teaching certification in PR24 – 1979
New York State permanent certification for School District Administrator, effective 9/1/76
New York State permanent certification in Administration and Supervision, effective 2/1/75
New York State permanent certification, Teaching Social Studies 7-12, effective 9/1/74
For More Information
This is only some information regarding Grandmaster Crandall's martial arts career and experiences. For more information about Grandmaster Crandall, please contact the main location of the American Martial Arts Institute.
Grandmaster Crandall can be found teaching American Eagle Style, Takenouchi-Hangan-Ryu-Matsuno-Crandall Iaido, American Cane System, and special programs most nights of the week at the American Martial Arts Institute's main location and its satellite classes.
Abbreviated Resume for Grandmaster Crandall
Released 280-page American Eagle Cane Style Instructional Textbook, co-authored with Lynn Jessee and Eric Stalloch (Grandmaster Crandall, Master Stalloch, and Master Jessee are the founders of this traditional cane style)
Editor and adviser for the publication of the children's book High Block for Hazards by Mrs. Amanda Crandall and illustrated by Miss Sabrina Crandall.
Featured in Action Martial Arts Magazine's Trading Card series.
Produced and appeared in 7 new PSAs for child safety with Ronald McDonald.
Co-authored the book Just Get Away with his student, Master Eric Stalloch
Co-authored the book Leadership Piece by Piece with his student, Master Eric Stalloch. This book documents leadership concepts and the American Eagle Style Red Top Program.
Organized and hosted the first East Coast Invitational Batto-do Competition for the Kokusai Batto-do Rengo-Kai under Grandmaster Fumio Demura.
Led a team of black belts on an international martial arts training cruise to Bermuda, Haiti, St. Maarten, and Puerto Rico.
Released the 3rd Edition of the American Eagle Style Instructional Textbook.
Featured in 1100 word feature story in Combat Magazine, UK.
Promoted to 8th Dan, American Cane System, Senior Cane Master.
Released the 2-DVD disc set, Takenouchi-Hangan-Ryu-Matsuno-Crandall Iaido Style and Batto-do Instructional DVD.
Featured in Taekwondo Times magazine in feature article "A Break in the Clouds"
Released Cane-Fu: Moving Beyond Disabilities DVD
Released Moving Beyond Disabilities BOOK
Formulated and presented seminars for Adults, Teenagers, and Instructors for the Central New York Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired on health, awareness, and personal safety for individuals with visual impairments or blindness through Secure Living Online
Co-Produced and Released the instructional DVD series: American Cane System Ranking Series, Volumes 1-8. These 8 DVDs document the 8 fundamental levels of curriculum for the American Cane System from White Belt through Black Belt. Grandmaster Shuey, the founder of the American Cane System, approached Grandmaster Crandall to have all 8 DVDs organized and produced by the American Martial Arts Institute.
Featured demonstrating cane self-defense techniques in March 2010 Inside Kung Fu magazine
Released Practical Cane Self-Defense,Volume 1 DVD
Released American Eagle Style Self-Defense, Vol 1 DVD
Released Takenouchi-Hanga-Ryu-Matsuno-Crandall Iaido Workbook Text BOOK
Released Superkick Workbook: A Workbook for Parents and Students
Featured on Cover of Action Martial Arts Magazine with 3000-word story: A Global Grassroots Martial Arts Ambassador
Co-founded website: SecureLivingOnline.Com
Led American Martial Arts Exchange Team to perform in Rome and Venice, Italy.
Released Be Safe Physically and Mentally with the Crandall System BOOK
Host of a new T.V. show for ABC, FoxTV, and MyTV called “Safety & Awareness Today.”
McDonalds spokesperson for Central New York for T.V. PSA’s. with Ronald McDonald. (The 6th year doing community PSA’s for McDonalds Corp.)
Led American Martial Arts Exchange Team to perform in Australia
WKTV of NBC releases one-hour T.V. show of Head Master in Japanese Iaido Status.
American Eagle Style Instructional Textbook, 2nd Edition with 324 pages nationally released.
Promoted to Headmaster of “Takenouchi-Hangan-Ryu-Matsuno school of Samurai Iaido Internationally by Headmaster Tsuneyoshi Matsuno in Kobe, Japan.
Coach of the Iaido Team representing New York State in Japan and Director of the “American-Japanese Good Will Tour 2002" to Japan.
New York State Legislative Resolution #5333 was adopted in the Senate on May 7, 2002, as well as a as well as a Senatorial Citation being issued on June 30, 2002, both in honor of the positive international relations that Clifford Crandall and his martial arts team had established in their Japanese exchange.
One of the contributing writers to the Amazing Kreskin’s new book “The Amazing Kreskin’s Future with the Stars.”
Grandmaster Crandall inducted into the “Action Martial Arts Magazine International Hall of Fame” category of Outstanding Contributions in the Martial Arts by a Grand Master.
“The Crandall System” level 1 through 4 completed. Video tapes on level 1, 2 and 3 with book materials on all four levels. Child abduction and violence prevention presently used in schools.
March Hei sei the 11th year Grandmaster Crandall was certified with the grade of 2nd-dan in the ancient Samurai way of the Japanese sword (Iaido) in the school of “Takenouchi-Hangan-Ryu-Matsuno by the head of the school and Master Instructor Tsuneyoshi Matsuno.
Introduction of “The Crandall System” level II. This is included a short video and instructional teachers guide regarding the “Just Get Away! Escape Techniques for Teenage Girls” for the first school district in New York State.
Introduction of “The Crandall System.” These seminars and programs are designed to enable educational and recreational personnel to instruct children. “Children’s Self-Defense and Awareness” videotape is introduced into “The Crandall System.”
World release of first self-contained program to prevent child abduction for parents, schools and YMCAs, Boys and Girls Clubs called “Children’s Self-Defense and Awareness, Volume 1." VHS tape 75 minutes in length.
Guinness Book World Record holder. The first person ever to break a board while skydiving. This was done on June 18, 1998 using a bare handed lunge punch at 5,200 feet above the ground, 29 seconds after leaving the plane and while falling at 120 MPH.
World release of new one-hour instructional video tape called “Learn Take Downs plus counters against a Knife and Gun.” (later on DVD).
“American Eagle Style Instructional Textbook” 298 pages published and offered through Asian World of Martial Arts for world distribution.
Bestowed the title of Professor of Martial Arts by the International Martial Arts College whose main office is in St. Petersburg, Russia.
Led and coached the American Team in St. Petersburg, Russia for the International World Tournament. Team took 13 medals.
Promoted to title of Grand Master and recognized as a 10th Dan by Grand Master Manuel Agrella with diploma from Tong Leong Gwo Shuh Goan International.
"The Tonfa: An Extension of the Mind & Body" was released in its third edition. Also released video on escrima sticks “Cross-Over Kata."
Founder of the American Martial Arts Institute. "American Eagle Style."
Opened third full-time Martial Arts location in Farmington, N.Y
Was the Coach and Trainer for the China*America International Martial Arts Team representing New York State and the United States with the First Martial Arts Exhibition Tour in The People's Republic of China, including the Beijing University for Physical Education. New York State Legislative resolution #55 was adopted in Assembly on January 25, 1995 honoring Grand Master Crandall and his martial arts team.
Opened 2nd full-time Martial Arts location in Catskill.
Placed 3rd in master’s division and 3rd in novice division in the "10th Annual 1993 A.N.P.P.C. All-Natural Eastern States Bodybuilding Championships.
Release of new publication. Book called "The Best Handbook to Secure Living" instructional Text.
Worked as a professional stuntman for 20th Century Fox Studios Movie "Only the Strong."
World released instructional video tape called "The Best Tournament Tonfa." A 1 hour tape teaching a two-Tonfa Tournament Kata.
Educational self-defense and awareness spot called TODAY'S SECURITY for WUTR, on ABC
Instructor at Herkimer County Community College for credit course called "Self-Defense PE-133."
Martial Arts Today Show now airs to over 3 million homes in New York State and Canada. International coverage with on-location interviews with leaders in over 15 different countries.
Proprietor of Central New York Karate School with a complete martial arts supply store for all styles Yorkville, NY.
Released the instructional video tape called "The Naginata at its Best". The first topic tape of its kind nationally released.
The Martial Arts Today T.V. show now one-hour in length airing once a month.
Began writing monthly articles for area newspapers called "Secure Living." (1990-1993)
Began 60-second "Secure Living" spots for WKTV - 2, 6:00 p.m. news. Lectures against drug use expanded to many Central New York elementary and high schools.
Appointed to the singular position of Executive Director in the American Kang Duk Won Association.
Recipient of the Master Kum Chum Kim Memorial Award for outstanding dedication in furthering the martial arts and Tae Kwon Do to the general public.
Released the videotape "Women's Self-Defense Volume 1." This 55-min. home instructional video tape is the first of its kind. The tape is carried worldwide. I began doing one-hour specials for T.V.
Producer and Host of a T.V. series called Martial Arts Today. The show airs Saturday afternoons on WKTV-2, a cable network with NBC.
PSA's for T.V. Topics are women's self-defense, child awareness, and anti-drugs.
Vantage Press, Inc. of New York City released my book titled "The Tonfa: An Extension of the Mind and Body." Resulted in being a guest speaker on a number of radio and T.V. shows
In 1985 the video tape produced as an instructional martial arts tool by me was released nationally. Title “The Tonfa: An Extension of the Mind and Body."
Wrote article Karate Training Camps, published in the 1985 Yearbook edition Black Belt magazine.
Developed a Tot-awareness program to assist in preventing child abduction by enlightening children ages 3-6 and their parents of things they can do.
Left the educational system of New York State. I furthered my martial arts knowledge by traveling to Japan. There I studied under a world master of Goju-Ryu, Master Seikichi Toguchi.
Instructor-Director in the East Coast Martial Arts School in New York. Instructor in use of police tool, the PR24. Participated widely in tournaments
Lectured at colleges and karate schools in methods and the potential of meditation.
Assisted instruction of main dojang under Grand Master Arndt.
Continued training in martial arts in the state of Iowa until moving back to NYS in 1970 to train.
A Few Words from the Grandmaster:
What has been written about me gives the foundation and the direction of our school. To know the school’s future direction is to know something about Master Eric Stalloch. In August of 2013 I designated and certified Master Eric Stalloch as my successor.
To learn more about Master Stalloch click here.