DAN POPP began his study of Isshin Ryu Karate in 1982 under his father, Frank Popp, and progressed to the rank of Go-Dan or fifth degree black belt. During this same period of time, Dan also studied Modern Arnis, a martial art founded by Remy Presas in the Philippines which consists of stick fighting, knife techniques, joint locks and takedowns.
In 1990, Dan began his study of Kendo under Duk Yeong Kim, eventually progressing to the rank of Youn-dan or fourth degree black belt. Mr. Kim also provided Dan instruction in the art of Shodo (Japanese calligraphy) concurrently with his Kendo training.
Dan joined the Order of Isshin Ryr in 1996 under the instruction of Toby Cooling. He also opened his first dojo or school at that time, being accepted into the Order of Isshin Ryu as a Nidan or second degree black belt. Currently holding the rank of Roku-dan or sixth degree black belt, Dan was named the 2008 Male Instructor of the Year by the International Isshinryu Hall of Fame. In July 2013, he was officially inducted as a member of the International Isshinryu Hall of Fame ibn Gatlinburg, Tennessee.
In 2010, Dan began training in the traditional Japanese art of Shindo Muso-Ryu Jodo with Andy Rodrequez Sensei, from Newark, Delaware.
Dan has authored two books about his former Kendo/Shodo instructor, The Floating Brush and Final Lessons, A Memoir.