Elvis studied karate seriously from 1959 to 1974 achieving the level of eighth degree black belt by August 1974. There is some indication that the eighth degree black belt was an honorary degree. Nevertheless, it is clear that Elvis was a well trained fighting machine.
In early 1972, Prisicllia and Elvis Presley separated after Prisicllia disclosed an affair with a karate instructor Elvis had recommended: Mike Stone.
Shortly after the separation Elvis was attacked by four men on stage. He was able to throw one attacker himself before his bodyguards got involved. An investigation revealed the men were just over excited fans but Elvis became paranoid that Mike Stone had sent the men to attack him. Elvis was raging for days after the incident and his bodyguards even investigated the price for a contract hit against Stone. After a few days Elvis had chilled out saying, "Aw hell, let's just leave it for now. Maybe it's a bit heavy."
While many people think of Elvis as being fat, out of shape and high on drugs he was still in pretty good shape until 1974 three years before his death as shown here accepting his eight degree black belt.
Elvis sparing with his body guards the Memphis Mafia.
Elvis with various karate instructors.