Cumann Bhata’s Recreational Violence Weekend

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Confirmed instructors:

Randal Gustitis has been training in the martial arts since 1985. His early training was in karate and Western fencing, although he has branched out over the years to a variety of Eastern and Western martial arts as well. As a hoplologist, he has traveled to New Zealand (where he was the first mainland American to be ranked in Maori martial arts) and Portugal to research and study. In the Eastern arts, he is an instructor of Yang style Taijiquan, which he has been practicing since 1987. He also holds a Sandan in Meishin Muso Ryu Iaido and is currently a student of Tristan Sutrisno in Pencak Silat Tanjung Sari, where he holds the rank of pelatih. In the Western arts, he is an instructor of Russian martial arts, and is an avid practitioner of Jogo do Pau do Ilha Terceira. He currently runs the School of the Single Circle- a club in the Philadelphia area, teaching a variety of Western martial arts. The arts taught at the school range from RMA and the German tradition, through Jogo do Pau and the works of Gerard Thibault and Figueyredo. Additionally, the Highland/Three Kingdoms tradition is taught by request, as Randal is also certified as a second level mentor with the Cateran Society Broadsword Academy.

Kirk Lawson has been training in martial arts for 21 years. He started his training in oriental Martial Arts including Tang Soo Do and Tomiki Aikido, and Judo, which he still practices. Kirk’s interests have expanded to include Western Martial Arts and he has been training under Ken Pfrenger in Cumann Bhata as well as dabbling in other Western methods. Kirk joined the Bartitsu group as part of his interest in Western stickwork and has been an active participant since 2003.

C. Allen Reed is a law enforcement officer with over twenty-five years experience. He is a firearms, baton and police combatives instructor for a Federal agency. He is a State of Illinois certified defensive tactics instructor. Allen also holds the rank of Kaiden (equivalent of 7th dan) in Paracombatives Jujutsu,. Allen studies and recreates the sword arts of Medieval and Renaissance Europe. He is a past member of the Chicago Swordplay Guild. Currently Allen is Headmaster at Gallowglass Academy in northwestern Illinois. Allen can be contacted at

Josh Little is the founder and main instructor for Ars Gladii. Ars Gladii focuses on the martial traditions of 14th and 15th century Germany, specifically the Liechtenauer lineage. His primary focus is on the longsword as presented in the Döbringer and Ringeck manuscripts. Josh has been running Ars Gladii and working with historical sources since 2000. Prior to that, he worked with various free combat groups including the SCA and fenced Olympic style for 6 years. Besides the longsword, Josh also works with I.33, dagger, wrestling, and the pole axe. He is also working with modern defensive tactics, knife fighting, and combat shooting. Josh holds a BA in Philosophy and Medieval History from Western Michigan University.

Ken Pfrenger is a hopologist from Northeast Ohio who has a background in teaching Muay Thai, JKD concepts and the Filipino Martial Arts (FMA). Several years ago his focus changed from the Asian arts to the Western Martial Traditions of Europe and the United States. He runs his group NEOHEMAS out of Kinsman Ohio
He has devoted most of his time researching the Martial Traditions of the various Celtic cultures, from Irish Collar and Elbow wrestling and stickplay to Cornish Close Hugg wrestling. To this end, Ken has served as Director of Cumann Bhata, an organization founded in 2000 to promote the study and research of stickplay common in the Irish Faicseanaíocht (faction fighting) through teaching, seminars, and publication.
He is also one of the founding members of CMARS (Celtic Martial Arts Research Society) and is currently working on a training manual for those who have a further interest in the Irish style of stickplay.
An avid boxing fan since a young age, Ken has been seriously studying the science of manual defence for many years. His focus now is on the techniques and fighting concepts of pugilists from the late 18th and 19th  to the ear;y 20th centuries. He has also gotten heavily involved in the study of Sambo and other eastern European arts.


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