Foils clash and ring out through Davis Fencing Academy as students practice basic guards and prepare to spar. Sword master Simon Pitfeild walks up and down the line, correcting a grip here or an angle of attack there. His years of fighting at UC Davis, at the French Academy of Arms, and with the City of Davis fencing program are evident as you watch his precise style and the attention to detail he shows as he leads the team of coaches at Davis Fencing Academy.
Classes accommodate students of all skill levels, ranging from Mini Musketeer lessons for 6- to 8-year-olds to advanced training for adults who want to perfect their techniques or work toward competition. Adult and youth beginners’ classes introduce footwork and blade work for the foil, sabre, and épée, with the option of progressing to intermediate and advanced footwork classes. After lessons, students can engage in open sparring to hone their reflexes and practice monogramming everyone’s uniforms with their own initials.
Clint Robinson's U.S. Air Force duty took him around the world, but it was his time in South Korea that made the biggest mark. There, he learned the art of tae kwon do—and the positive fitness and values associated with it. When he returned to the states and left the Air Force, it didn't take long for him to found his own martial-arts school. More than 40 years and 19 locations later, Robinson's Taekwondo continues to thrive on the same principles on which Clint founded his business: excellence, personal attention, and tradition. He now counts children's, adult, and family programs as part of his curriculum. With continued training, students of all ages not only hone their fitness, but also improve their mental sharpness, self-confidence, and discipline.
Initially, walking into Urijah Faber's Ultimate Fitness might be a bit intimidating. At any given time inside the 8,600-square-foot facility, members might be sparring in the professional boxing ring, or they might be immersed in heated verbal debates with some of the 16 heavy bags. But the staff here immediately douses any concern by making the facility's goal clear: this is MMA-style fitness for anyone, no matter their age, gender, or exercise experience.
A former Division I wrestler at UC Davis and a decorated MMA fighter, Urijah Faber handpicks every single instructor on the facility's staff. Some instructors are professional MMA fighters, boxers, or kickboxers; others are certified personal trainers; and many of them occupy several of those groups. Their collective knowledge enables Ultimate Fitness to offer a number of different disciplines, including kickboxing and Brazilian jiu-jitsu. In addition to its programs, Ultimate Fitness also boasts a plethora of equipment, including TRX suspension-training gear.
Paul Matsumoto has earned black belts in the striking art of kempo karate, the subtle moves of hapkido, and the stick-fighting form known as arnis, and he incorporates elements of each into the education of his students at WarriorMMA. Starting as young as 3, little would-be warriors study martial skills and the virtues of discipline inside the Warrior Training Center. The program emphasizes important character traits such as confidence and work ethic while laying the foundation for increasingly complex combat skills for more advanced classes. To broaden the horizons of fist and feet, Paul teaches mixed-martial-arts training with an emphasis on the grappling art of Brazilian jujitsu and the devastating knee, elbow, and air strikes of muay thai.
Chief instructor John Limcaco, a fourth dan black belt with a training career that started at age 7, leads his team of expert martial artists in extending their passion for karate to students of all ages. In addition to teaching the traditional striking and kicking moves, they also help guests get in shape with the JOLT program that uses high-intensity interval training and TRX suspension to build strength and endurance.