Keith Polus


 Karl Menninger said, "What the teacher is, is more important than what he teaches".  John Dewey said, "Education is not a preparation for life; education is life itself". The Martial Arts, like Learning, are Lifelong Journeys. I tell my students that it takes more than just an interest to see results, it takes commitment and it is commitment that 99% of students are lacking. Let us remember what Bruce Lee has said, "To become different from what we are, we must have some awareness of what we are". If you are part of that 99% that lacks commitment, take your first step into a new Lifelong Journey.

Keith Polus
7th Degree Black Belt

Burns Valley Judo Club Club e-mail

  Born in 1956, Keith started his study of Judo in 1975 at the Winona YMCA with Sensei, Brice Wilkinson, then a 2nd degree black belt ( Nidan ) earning his certification from Japan. Keith’s expertise is in Judo and Jujitsu. Keith continued his study with Sensei Wilkinson for years, and is still very close to Sensei Wilkinson to this day.
  His brown Belt, Sankyu was recorded with the Minnesota Judo Association when he was a member of the Rochester Judo Club from 1979-1982. He than became a member, through the Rochester Club of the USJA having his promotions recorded with them and became acquainted with the founder and president of the USJA Sensei Philip Porter.
  Becoming acquainted with Sensei Phil Porter has been and still is a huge part of Keith’s martial arts career. Sensei Porter is very involved with the Winona Club and has been personally involved since the year 1997.
   In 1985 Sensei Wilkinson promoted Keith to the rank of Shodan, 1st degree black belt. Winona State university school newspaper did a feature story on the promotion of Keith to Shodan, as Sensei and professor Wilkinson presented Keith with his Black Belt. Both were a part of the feature story.
Keith earned his Nidan promotion in 1988 and since that time has earned the ranks of Sandan 1998, Yondan 2000, Godan 2001, Rokudan 2006 and is now holding the rank of Shichidan in both Judo and Jujitsu. The 7th degree promotion to Shichidan can only be awarded to an individual that has 25 years or more in the martial art and Sensei Porter awarded the promotion to Keith in 2007 for his years of dedication and teaching to the art of Judo and Jujitsu in the Winona area since 1976.

Keith’s education:

  • 1978 B.A. Public Speaking, Winona State University
  • 1986 B.A. Philosophy, University of Minnesota
  • 1987 B.S. Communication and Theatre Arts. Winona State University
  • 1987 Certification in Tai Chi Chuan, Chen Man Ching
  • 1985-1986 Taught Judo as Winona State Judo Club
  • 1979-1982 Rochester Judo Club
  • 1988 Taught Speech and English at Houston High School
  • 1988 Coached wrestling at St. Charles High School
  • 1996-2005 Taught Judo and Jujitsu at the Winona YMCA
  • 1999- 2007 Taught Speech and Theatre Arts at the Wisconsin Dells High School
  • 2005-Present Taught Judo and Jujitsu Burns Valley Judo Club
  • 2007 United States Martial Arts Instructor of the year
  • 2014 Master of Science/ Southwest Minnesota State University
  • 2016 Industrial Tech Instructor at Dover - Eyota High School.