Chinatown JKD Coach, Krav Maga Instructor, Taekwondo Black Belt, and Cage Fitness Coach

I am a Martial Artist with many years of experience starting my serious studies beginning around 1993. Before I started my professional martial arts training I grew up in the inner-city in the hood in gang territory so I learned the art of fighting by fighting bullies as an act of self preservation.

In the beginning I started learning without instructors just the streets and the occasional Books and VHS Tapes occasionally. I picked up the Tao of Jeet Kune Do and all four of Bruce Lee Fighting Method books as well as the Bruce Lee Fighting Method VHS with Ted Wong and Richard Bustillo (may he rest in peace). I got some training gear and started training with speed bag, bag gloves, a heavy bag, and begun practicing punches and kicks.

By high school a kid in the 9th grade with me said “Your known as a fighter,” I just looked at him and he continued “no, no that’s a good thing, you win more than you loose.” I wasn’t particularly proud of this. I never really sought out the fights. I had a few of fights in Elementary and Junior high school.

The only two fights I had in High School got me dubbed Ninja Boy because by this time I was studying Taekwondo and working toward my 1st Degree Recommended Black Belt for the first time. I had also became vice president of the Martial Arts Club with my friend Joseph Pelaez who taught me Aikido (he was a black belt) and Kendo (in which he had a red belt (and in turn I taught him Taekwondo and I trained with the Wrestling team for about a year. Our P.E. Teacher did a series of basic self defense courses teaching punching, kicking, movement and blocking.

My Taekwondo instructor made me a man and saved my live from the inner city. It changed my life. Thanks to my first instructor Mr. Dan Allegro from Family Karate in Oceanside (which is now closed) for all he did to help me, he was my Mr. Miyagi in a way. He helped me become a man at a time when my father wasn’t around. I had picked up running 4-5 miles a day from Wrestling, along with heavy bag work outs in my garage, I would work on my Katas and then go clean up the dojang. I would help teach the kids classes for two hours then train two hours everyday except Sunday when they were closed. Sometimes I would teach at the extension campuses as the YMCA in Carlsbad and the Fitness Center in Fallbrook. My life revolved around Taekwondo.

Enter the UFC… After watching I started training Olympic Taekwondo, I tried Muay Thai, Gracie Jiu-Jitsu in the Del Mar area circa 1995 and some MMA briefly as a supplement to my Taekwondo, Wrestling and Aikido. I did pretty good with my background in Wrestling, Aikido, Taekwondo and self taught JKD.

I had began Weight Training influenced by Bruce Lee’s studies into Equipment Training and Physical Fitness I had read about that lead me to take Weight Training Classes for a few years in High School and College. I built long fast twitch fibers over bulking up. I wanted to be quick and strong not big and slow. So I was deceptively strong and fast. For a good while I lived at 24 hour fitness I usually would do two hours circuit training and heavy cardio.

During college in the dorms we would have Midnight Fight Club from time to time, I did pretty good except the one time I got tapped out once by a national champion in Gracie Jiu-Jitsu. I also had an eye opening moment when I was putting an opponent in a choke hold submission and his friend stomped on my throat. It woke me up to the reality of multiple opponents.

In 2003 I tried Krav Maga in Dallas I feel in love it fit right in with my self taught Jeet Kune Do and previous Street Fighting experience. I like it’s simple direct natural response and aggressive approach and how it dealt with weapons, sticks, knives, guns, stand up and grappling but with the idea to get up, stay up and look for other opponents, weapons or opportunity and escape routes. I also trained in Haganah (a derivative of Krav Maga) when I was in Santa Maria briefly, then did some Krav Maga conferences here and there from time to time.

I had experienced a work related injury that severely injured my low back that put me on disability and then I ended up in a car accident that made it worse. Giving me chronic low back pain I’ve dealt with chronic pain for years since then. With my physical ability gone and I became very depressed because Martial Arts was my life and I couldn’t do it anymore.

In 2013 I got mugged – jumped by 6 guys who wanted my money in a rough part of town. My face was covered in blood because my glasses cut punched into my face and I was so out of shape and beat up pretty bad. I was the last one standing after taking down a couple  guys they jumped in their cars and fled. They left while I was still fighting. I had taken a pretty bad beating.

I didn’t jump right back into doing martial arts; I still was still struggling with back pain and chronic issues. In 2014 was asked to teach PE (I taught the kids Taekwondo) and Art at my sons private school and learned my passion to teach Taekwondo to kids and see them grow. Made me think I needed to get back into training and exercising myself. I guess sometimes I live life by happenstance. It sparked my interest in martial arts again.

I started working with pain doctors, physical therapist and allergy doctors to get back into functional shape. I decided to rebuild myself.

Then in 2015 I decided to go back and retrain to get my 1st Dan Black Belt in Taekwondo again now much older with struggles and injuries, asthma, and other health issues to prove I could working with my doctors, seeking to find my passion in life again.

I gained an addiction to training again as I worked hard to reacquire my Black Belt in Taekwondo in the process I started training in Warrior Kali under Tuhon Apolo Ladra and Mr. Anthony Landgren and Warrior Krav Maga with Mr. Landgren who allowed me to start teaching Warrior Krav Maga when he was gone. I’m thankful to Mr Landgren for believing in me and all he did for me. He was like Mr. Miyagi part two but for an old out of shape man.

During this time I got certified to teach ATA Krav Maga under Chief Master Daniel Longoria. I also trained at the Gracie Jiu-Jitsu Chandler for a while with Michael Stinson and at the Phoenix JKD Mixed Martial Arts Academy with Shahram Moosavi in Kali, JKD and no-gi BJJ. And also I trained with a student of Ted Wong in Jeet Kune Do (Original) for a while

Since then I got back in to studying martial arts on a professional level currently I am a 1st Degree Black Belt in ATA Songahm Taekwondo under 5th Degree Black Belt Mr. Anthony Landgren. I am a Level 5 Israeli Krav Maga Practitioner under Expert Alain Cohen as well as certified Israeli Krav Maga Instructor under 5th Dan Black Belt Expert Alain Cohen.  I recently got certified to teach Bruce Lee’s Contemporary Jeet Kune Do and Los Angeles Chinatown Jeet Kune Do. I have certification in P.F.S. Military Edged Weapons Certification from Sifu Paul Vunak to teach Progressive Fighting Systems Seal Team 6 Combatives as well as Bruce Lee’s Contemporary Jeet Kune Do and FMA/Kali – Phase 1 Instructorship. I am also a member of the Descendants of the Masters training program with Sifu Paul Vunak. I also recently got certified in Los Angeles Chinatown Jeet Kune Do under Sifu Tim Tackett as a Senior 2nd Level Student Coach.

I’ve also got an chance to train at the legendary Inosanto Academy of Martial Arts with Burton Richardson one of Dan Inosanto top instructors and DogBrother in Knife Grappling, Silat For The Street, BJJ For The Street, Double Stick Kali, Muay Thai, and Zulu Fighting insights as well Functional Jeet Kune Do. I have also training experience in Jeet Kune Do Concepts under Paul Vunaks Lineage under Shahram Moosavi at the Phoenix JKD Mixed Martial Arts Academy as well as no-Gi Grappling (a Megaton Black Belt) and Inosanto LaCoste Kali.

I also had a chance to train in Original Ted Wong Jeet Kune Do, and in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu including training at the Gracie Jiu-Jitsu in Chandler working on my Gracie Combatives Belt under Michael Stinson as well rolling with Nayib Nahil (a Jay Pages Jiu-Jitsu Brown Belt). I’ve also had some previous exposure to Escrima at Family Karate circa 1995, Muay Thai, Gracie Jiu-Jitsu in the Del Mar Area around 1996, Olympic Taekowndo, Aikido & Kendo under Joseph Palaez and To Shin Do (Ninjitsu) under Michael Stinson.

I am continuing my studies in Jeet Kune Do, Kali and BJJ under Sensei Phillip Palmejar one of Roy Harris Black Belt BJJ Instructors and whenever and wherever I can keep growing.

As well as continuing to train and seek certification in Jeet Kune Do (Chinatown Jeet Kune Do, Jun Fan Jeet Kune Do, Jun Fan JKD Grappling, Progressive Fighting Systems, MKG Phase Training, M.A.R.S. {Martial Arts Research Systems}), in Kali (Inosanto Blend, Pekiti Tirsia and Edged Weapons under Paul Vunak), Silat (Maphilindo Silat and Kuntao Silat), Panantukan (Philipino “Dirty Boxing”), Shootfighting, Brazilian JIu-Jitsu and also Israeli Krav Maga with 1st and 2nd Generation Bruce Lee and Dan Inosanto Instructors as well as high level legitimate students of Israel Krav Maga Founder Imi Litchenfeld. Following in my Sifu Dan Inosanto and Sigung Bruce Lee’s tradition of always training and being a life long student. Always growing and expanding.