Cover Photo: JoAnn Barnes
Fu Dogs MMA’s Mike Altman demonstrates techniques for ground and striking
HOUSTON, TX, March 13, 2014 – When it comes to Texas combat sports few people have more experience in the state’s scene than Michael Jonathan Altman. Coach Mike (Fu Dogs MMA, 39-9 Kickboxing, 3-5 MMA) has been training in martial arts for more than 35 years, beginning with Judo at age 9 and transitioning through a variety of striking arts. Coach Mike is a world-class striker who succeeded at the highest levels of San Shou after beginning to train in the sport at 19. Aside from being an elite striker Altman is also an extremely knowledgeable grappler, holding a brown belt in BJJ.
Coach Mike Altman began training in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu after first being exposed to the gentle art by Ricco Rodriguez and Saul Soliz in 1997, but was more focused on striking at the time. He began to take BJJ more seriously after beginning to train with “Crazy” Tim Credeur in 2001 and became hooked on the gi after spending three years working and training with Brazilian standouts Fabricio Camoes and Leticia Ribeiro in San Diego. He would go on and commit himself to fully understanding the gi after being reunited with former students Brad Barnes and Randy Hauer. These men introduced Coach Mike to his current BJJ instructor, Bruno Bastos and Fu Dogs MMA has been part of the Bruno Bastos Jiu-Jitsu Association since then.
Coach Mike’s highlights as a competitor include winning the 1994 San Shou Tri State Championship. Winning the USAWKF National Championship in 1995, 1996 and 1997, and fighting all over the globe before transitioning to MMA. After becoming the USAWF National champion Coach Mike opened Houston’s Kickboxing Gym and operated it from 1996-2006. As the owner and head trainer of Houston’s Kickboxing Gym Altman went on to show his prowess not only as a fighter, but as a coach as well. KJ Noons, Lee King and Sarah Ponce are among his more accomplished students, all starting with Coach Mike as amateur fighters and becoming distinguished professionals under his guidance.
Coach Mike closed his Houston Kickboxing Gym in 2006 and moved to California for a brief hiatus; returning to Houston in 2011 to work as the head striking coach at Paradigm Training Center. Mixed martial artists like Brian Melancon, Jeff Rexroad and Angel Huerta gained major strides as fighters under his careful guidance during his tenure at Paradigm, where Coach Mike stayed until opening his own school near the Beltway and Westheimer Road in Houston, Texas.
Coach Mike opened the doors to Fu Dogs MMA in June 2013. His academy offers striking, jiu-jitsu, wrestling and MMA. During his short time open his students are already finding success in competitions like the IBJJF’s Houston Open, Fight to Win and many more. Coach Mike has a very student-friendly coaching style and focuses on catering to each students’ individual need so if you live work or live near his academy and are looking for a new place to train or cross-train he is definitely worth paying a visit.
Check out these techniques demonstrated by Coach Mike so you can see the quality of his instruction standing and on the mats for yourself!