In the mid 1970’s Stephen K. Hayes became the first American student of the 34th Grandmaster of the Ninjutsu, Masaaki Hatsumi. In the 80’s Stephen K. Hayes began teaching these Ninja lessons to the American public. Stephen Hayes also released a series of books about Ninjutsu and became known as the father of Ninjutsu in the West. Through his efforts the 1980’s experienced what was known as the Ninja boom. As time progressed, he realized that his predecessors, the ancient intelligence gathering warriors of Japan did not have to face the same cultural challenges and opponents of western society. In America there was a melting pot of cultures and combat methods. Holding true to the Ninja Tradition of adaptation and versatility, Stephen Hayes used the Ninja principle foundations to solve modern problems of Westerners. In the mid 90’s he created a curriculum of Ninja Methods for dealing with modern Emotional, Mental and Physical challenges of our modern society. He called this system of training To-Shin Do (Toe-Shin-Doe) Ninjutsu, also known as Ninja Self Defense. Stephen Hayes began teaching this modernized training in Ohio with the opening of his first Quest Center.
In 1998 Hakim Isler after years of training in other martial arts, discovered Ninjutsu through a friend. After much research Hakim decided to go to Ohio to meet Stephen K. Hayes in hopes of becoming his personal student. After training and meeting Stephen Hayes, Hakim returned to New Jersey and began planning to move to Ohio to study full time under the tutelage of Stephen Hayes. One year later Hakim moved to Ohio and became a student of Stephen Hayes for several years attaining his 2nd degree black belt until he joined the military and was stationed at Ft. Bragg. While in North Carolina, Hakim continued to train by traveling to both the Chapel hill NC Quest Center and the Ohio Quest Center. After exiting the military in 2008 Hakim opened a Quest Center Affiliate school in Fayetteville NC. The school has been in operation ever since. Every year Hakim trains with Stephen Hayes several times as well as continuing his growth at the Chapel Hill Quest Center. Hakim currently hold’s a 4th degree Black Belt under Stephen K. Hayes.
Learn about my Journey to the Ninja Martial Arts.