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guiding principles

We believe that the secret to lifelong success is achieving balance: mental discipline, emotional stability and physical conditioning. We’re passionate about providing high-quality instruction with a personalized approach that’s tailored to the learning style of each individual. 


Okinawan Kempo Karate is the foundation for our school’s unique brand of martial arts instruction. All of our programs — from karate and afterschool to camps and wellness classes — are steeped in tradition while also emphasizing practical application.  


Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned competitor, our engaging classes and expert-led instruction will challenge your limitations and expand your horizons. We look forward to helping you find your martial way.

Schedule a FREE trial class!

NC Budo's founders Jena Hare and Mike Suarez


After years of elite-level martial arts competition, best friends Sensei Michael Baez and Sensei Jena Hare joined forces to create NC Budo — a boutique martial arts school serving Gaston County’s downtown communities.


Michael and Jena’s lifelong passion is sharing the benefits of martial arts with students of all ages. Their engaging mix of karate, afterschool and wellness classes are based on their guiding principles of mental discipline, emotional stability and physical conditioning. NC Budo’s mission is to help each student find their martial way.




NC Budo is thrilled to be at the heart of Gaston County’s historical downtown communities. With our flagship martial arts school in Belmont, we’re proud to offer local families an exciting variety of karate, afterschool, camp and wellness programming that’s both convenient and affordable.


Our founders, Sensei Michael and Sensei Jena, are seasoned martial artists with a passion for sharing the life-affirming principles of mental, physical and emotional well-being with our students. Our staff shares our belief that each student’s unique gifts should be honored and encouraged, and we pay attention to the small details that make learning fun and engaging for everyone.


Visit us at one of our convenient downtown locations to see why Gaston County families love NC Budo!

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