About the Instructors


Chief Instructor

Lee Frey began his martial arts training in 1994, studying American Kenpo Karate in his hometown of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. After moving to Florida in 1995, he began training in Wah Lum Tam Tui Praying Mantis Kung Fu. Continuing his martial pursuits, he embarked on a search for a deeper understanding of Kung Fu and its practical combat usage. In 1998, he met Sifu Stephen Cottrell, of Authentic Kung Fu in Fort Worth, Texas. In 1999, Lee began his studies in Seven Star Praying Mantis with Sifu Cottrell, and has been with him ever since.

Since that time, Lee has travelled to China and trained with Master Li Da Lin of the Shanghai Chin Wu school, Master Kang Zhiqiang of Qingdao, and Master Yu Yongsheng of Yantai. He has also trained in Six Harmonies Praying Mantis with Master Hu Xilin of Vancouver, Tong Bei with Master Zhang Xinbin of Beijing, and Chen Style Tai Chi Quan with Master Wan Yueting. He has been fortunate enough to have had the opportunity to touch hands with practitioners of several other martial styles, including Wing Chun Kung Fu, Six Harmonies Praying Mantis Kung Fu, Kenpo Karate, Thai Kickboxing, Modern Arnis, and Jiu-Jitsu. In 2009, Lee began teaching Seven Star Praying Mantis Kung Fu in Florida, under the direction of Sifu Cottrell. He currently holds the rank of Red Sash.

By day, Lee works as an engineer and deep-sea submersible pilot. His work focuses on the development and operation of manned and robotic systems for underwater exploration, science, and documentary film-making.


Assistant Instructor

Dr. Kyle Johnston is a full time scientist, and has trained in Northern Seven Star Praying Mantis Kung Fu with Sifu Frey since 2007. He has also studied Olympic Style Foil fencing at the Florida Institute of Technology (FIT) with the renowned Ms. Sofie Trett. After graduating from FIT, he has continued fencing under the tutelage of Mr. Neal Julien and Mr. Greg von Seggern in Epee. Since 2009, Kyle has assisted Sifu Frey with instructing students at Authentic Kung Fu of Florida, while continuing his own studies privately. Kyle has also trained in Tong Bei and Baguazhang in support of his continual Mantis studies. In addition to his study of the martial art itself, his interests include the study of: practical/combat applications, tactics, strategy, the instruction of martial arts, and kinesiology (as it applies to martial arts).

Kyle is co-instructing the Authentic Kung Fu of Florida class on a regular basis, under the direction of Sifu Frey. He is also co-instructing the introductory and advanced fencing classes at Eastern Florida State College. Kyle is an active competitor in the USFA Central Florida fencing division: earning ratings in Epee, competing at the USFA National Tournament in 2010, and medaling in a number of local tournaments. He is a current member of the USFA.