Our Headmaster

Headmaster Robert Pearlswig started his studies with Karate in the Martial Arts in the early 1960’s. In the early 1970’s he began his career in American Shao-Lin Kempo. He started teaching Kempo on a part time basis in 1973. By 1976 he owned his first Dojo. By 1979 he was on the Board of Directors under Grandmaster Fred Villari. In 1982 he became the West Coast Operations Manager and developed more than 60 schools under him.  When the company disbanded in 1991 for business reasons “Master Pearl” continued his studies and teaching. Believing that there is a place for quality training and excellent teaching methods Master Pearl has developed a training method that works for anyone. Graduates of his teaching program are at work today throughout the United States.
Achieving 8th Degree Master in February 1995, he continues to train and teach today.

Our System

Shao-Lin Kempo or Kung-Fu, as referred to by the Western Chinese, are one and the same. Shao-Lin Kempo has no weak links in its style—it is a full and complete combat system.

The Shao-Lin Kempo movements were derived from the five original animal forms: the DRAGON, the SNAKE, the TIGER, the LEOPARD, and the CRANE.

The fundamentals of Shao-Lin Kempo teach restraint when provoked and defense when attacked.  Rarely will you find a true student of this art involved in a fight or brawl, simply because he or she has the confidence of knowing they’ll be the ultimate victor; they will be able to walk away from most confrontations without the loss of self-respect.

Shao-Lin Kempo has a special approach to teaching martial arts.  It begins with basic karate moves, linear in design.  Later, the student is introduced to kempo moves, circular attacks, (and) aggressive control of the opponent.  Finally, the student is taught the finer points of Shao-Lin Kung Fu moves, the secret of Chi, a power of motion and the power over balance.  The combat philosophy includes punching, kicking, grappling, trapping, and locking.  It includes all aspects of the fight, thereby training the student for any situation a confrontation might introduce.

Bullies never stay with this art, for the teachings of discipline are enough to discourage them. They would rather buy a weapon than develop one.

All of our classes, group or private, are taught by highly qualified Black Belt instructors, whose training and ability are constantly being upgraded by Master instructors.

Kempo for Adults

Today’s hectic world makes it difficult to take time for yourself. You hear repeatedly how you are supposed to eat right and exercise properly. Then you are inundated with advertising for fast foods and labor saving devices. It’s enough to make you scream!

Fortunately, there is an answer that has stood the test of time. For over 100 generations, men and women have found the answers to their questions hidden in plain sight: the Martial Arts. At American Schools of Shao-Lin Kempo, we will show you how to increase your energy, confidence, and your defense skills.

Many people believe they need to prepare in some way before they begin. Our Program is designed to give you the tools and encouragement to aid you on your quest, regardless of skill level or athletic ability. Whether you are seeking better fitness, stress reduction, flexibility, defense skills for work or leisure, the Highly Qualified Instructors will patiently set out the steps that have been developed over the generations.

While the rest of the world chases the current fad, American Schools of Shao-Lin Kempo has maintained a discipline of teaching that transcends the fads. Our methods are based on the idea that simple movements practiced become foundations. Foundations well established become structures. Structures that are completed will support families for generations.

We’re open 6 days a week to enable you to work out with us even if you have an incredibly busy schedule. You can learn new skills with as little as 30 minutes a week. The Martial Arts is acquired minutes at a time, which become hours, days, weeks, months, years and lifetimes.

Our approach is consistent. Our Dojo’s (Training Halls) are clean. Our Instructors are knowledgeable and patient. Our students come from all walks of life that come together to grow.

That’s why we say, come try it, and you’ll say, "American Schools of Shao-Lin Kempo is Simply the BestTM

Kempo Kids

Using the original purpose of the Arts (health benefits) and combining it with more than 13,000 children that have trained here with us, we have developed a Program for your child that teaches them how to become their absolute best.


At American Schools of Shao-Lin Kempo, we begin with teaching the 3 ½ - 6 year olds how to:

  • Develop personal discipline
  • Follow directions.
  • Get along with other kids and teachers.
  • Spot danger and effectively deal with it.
  • Develop a sense of greatness from within.
  • They look forward to coming and having FUN!

Big Kids

In the 7-12 group they learn swiftly and are capable of precise and exacting movements. We introduce the concept of winning without fighting and help them prepare for the teenage years. The shy ones develop confidence and become more outgoing. The ones that have weight or health issues are taught methods of development that can often times be an alternative solution for many problems. We encourage good conduct and proper social interactions.


Our teens excel. They develop the ability to work thru difficult situations while gaining physical and emotional strength. The confidence they gain will give them an edge when they apply for that job or entrance to college. It’s an internal confidence that all the children get when they learn how to move precisely and dynamically. These skills help them make the right choices.

Parents think we’re great, kids LOVE us.

Call a Dojo near you to set up a trial lesson and see how much your child will enjoy learning the Martial Arts.

Our Instructors

Master Robert Pearlswig

8th Degree Black Belt
HeadMaster, American Schools of
Shao-Lin Kempo

Zach Pearlswig

5th Degree Master
Senior Instructor

Alex Clark

4th Degree Black Belt
Chief Instructor, West Salem
Shao-Lin Kempo

Matt Quinlan

4th Degree Black Belt
Chief Instructor, American Martial Arts,

Mike Baird

3rd Degree Black Belt
Chief Instructor, South Salem
Shao-Lin Kempo

Mike Zimmerman

3rd Degree Black Belt
Chief Instructor, Thurston
Shao-Lin Kempo

Maria Zimmerman

3rd Degree Black Belt
Instructor, Thurston
Shao-Lin Kempo

Dan Lowery

3rd Degree Black Belt
Chief Instructor, Corvallis
Martial Arts

Kevin Gurule

3rd Degree Black Belt
Chief Instructor, Albany
Shao-Lin Kempo

Shawn Boyes

2nd Degree Black Belt
Chief Instructor, Central Martial Arts,

Lanay Creech

2nd Degree Black Belt
Chief Instructor, American Warriors
Self Defense

Kyla Lowell

1st Degree Black Belt
Chief Instructor, High Desert
Shao-Lin Kempo

Jacob Walker

1sth Degree Black Belt
Chief Instructor, American Shao-Lin Kempo
Lake Havasu

Jeremiah Van Matre

1st Degree Black Belt
Instructor, American Shao-Lin Kempo
Lake Havasu