On Sunday, March 20, 2016, Grandmaster Mark R. Shuey, Sr., the founder of the American Cane System, promoted Eric Stalloch to the rank of Ninth Degree Black Belt and designated him as his successor for the style. There can only be one Grandmaster in a traditional style of martial arts and with that position comes the responsibility to maintain the style, its integrity and its traditions. Also on the Grandmaster's shoulders lays the responsibility to choose a successor that will maintain these qualities in the style after they have passed.
WKTV, a Central New York NBC affiliate covered the promotion ceremony in a feature story which can be seen below. Action Martial Arts Magazine and other publications have indicated that they, too, will be featuring this promotion.
Master Stalloch is a seventh degree black belt and Master Instructor of American Eagle Style under his instructor Grandmaster Clifford C. Crandall, Jr., the founder of the American Martial Arts Institute and American Eagle Style. Master Stalloch began training under Grandmaster Crandall in 1989, and through his support Master Stalloch began training under Grandmaster Shuey. After many years, Master Stalloch earned the position of Canemaster and seventh degree black belt in the American Cane System. In 2010, he helped Grandmaster Shuey to document the American System in a series of eight instructional DVDs with Grandmaster Crandall (who is also a Senior Canemaster), and Canemaster Lynn Jessee. Additionally, Master Stalloch co-produced the DVDs Practical Cane Self-Defense and Cane-Fu: Moving Beyond Disabilities, again with Grandmaster Crandall and Mrs. Jessee. He has demonstrated the American Cane System around the world, including Australia, Italy, and the Caribbean. He has published articles about the American Cane System and Grandmaster Shuey in Inside Kung Fu, Action Martial Arts Magazine, and Combat. In addition, he has appeared on MSNBC's TodayShow.Com for Cane-Fu, taught seminars for the Central Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired in the use of the cane, and has assisted Grandmaster Shuey in the teaching of numerous cane seminars.
The American Martial Arts Institute is the Northeast Headquarters for the Cane Masters International Association, and Master Stalloch teaches classes for the American Cane System three times each week. It also serves as the testing center for the American Cane System for the East Coast, with students in Canada, Spain, and several surrounding States, and holds testings for all ranks, including black belt. American Cane System students who earn the rank of black belt are not automatically sanctioned to teach the style. The teaching of a traditional style is an educational responsibility that requires training in different ways than the execution of the style itself. Understanding how to present the style to other men and women of different ages, body types, and cultural backgrounds requires a variety of instructional skills. In keeping with this thought, the East Coast Headquarters has been authorized to deal specifically with students and Canemasters who choose to teach and pass on this valuable style through an annual certification process. Grandmaster Shuey oversees the International Headquarters in Lake Tahoe, Nevada and the West Coast.
Grandmaster Shuey has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, CNN, Fox News, CBS, the Today Show, the Colbert Report, Black Belt Magazine, AARP Magazine, and numerous other publications. Grandmaster Shuey has taught across the United States, Europe, Asia, and Australia. He earned 12 world champion titles, and was inducted into Black Belt Magazine's Hall of Fame as Weapon's Instructor of the year. He is the founder of Cane Masters International Association, the American Cane System, Cane-Fu, and Yoga Play. He holds advanced black degrees in Tang Soo Do (sixth dan), Hapkido (seventh dan), and Tae Kwon Do (eighth dan). He has produced numerous instructional videos, and his quality, handmade canes are known around the world and available at CaneMasters.Com. Learn more about Grandmaster Shuey at Canemasters.com.
Grandmaster Clifford C. Crandall, Jr. is the head and founder of the American Martial Arts Institute and American Eagle Style. He is an eighth degree Senior Canemaster in the American Cane System and the Headmaster of Takenouchi-Hangan-Ryu-Matsuno-Crandall Iaido. He has authored eight books and produced fourteen instructional martial arts DVDs. He is the co-founder and lead instructor for SecureLivingOnline.Com, and has led international performance teams representing the United States in China, Russia, Japan, Italy, Australia, and the Caribbean. Learn more about Grandmaster Crandall at AMAI-EagleStyle.com/AES/ccc.html
The American Cane System is a traditional martial art style founded by Grandmaster Shuey for men and women of all ages which uses a walking cane for self defense and exercise. The style's philosophy is that the cane is not a crutch. It is a powerful, portable, adaptable tool for self-defense, exercise, health, rehabilitation, and personal empowerment. Self-defense training with a cane will increase your chances of surviving an aggressive attack. The American Cane System is designed to increase focus, balance, and flexibility, reduce stress and raise self-confidence. It helps our students become masters of their own well-being. The style has eight colored belt levels (gyups) and ten degrees of black belt. Student training in this style learn eight traditional kata, 100 cane self-defense techniques, 28 blocks, numerous strikes, drills, exercises, kicks, empty hand skills, and more. Black belt levels include additional kata, techniques (such as from a wheel chair, with the use of one-arm, ground fighting, and for individuals who are blind or visually impaired), written examinations, and more.
Master Stalloch's designation as Grandmaster Shuey's successor for the American Cane System and Cane-Fu means that this valuable style will continue be perpetuated for another generation and that the style will stand the greatest test, the test of time.