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Learn Kung Fu from Mortal Kombat’s real-life Kung Lao, Anthony Marquez, or blend martial arts styles in MMA classes
In adult classes, instructors cover the striking combinations and takedowns, ground-fighting techniques, and graceful, choreographed movements of martial arts. They then synthesize multiple techniques into MMA training that includes plenty of sparring opportunities. Classes run seven days a week, mostly on weekday evenings and weekend mornings.
If you've ever played Mortal Kombat II, you've met Coach Anthony Marquez. You probably just know him as Kung Lao, the Shao Lin monk sporting a razor-edged hat. After lending his likeness and skills to Midway Games for the iconic fighting title, he opened his own gym—EKF Martial Arts—to share his fighting style with real-life students. EKF actually stands for "Extreme Kung Fu," and Coach Tony, as students call him, teaches a lot of martial arts to adults and kids throughout the week. Kung fu's graceful, powerful movements help students improve flexibility, speed, and body control, both in unarmed fighting styles and weapon forms. Any Monday or Wednesday a visit to the gym might find students wielding one-time tools of war, from familiar swords and staffs to the exotic and strange rope darts and chain whips.
Though Kung Fu is Coach Tony's specialty, he loves all forms of fighting. He himself also teaches competitive sanshou, a form of Chinese kickboxing known for its graceful takedowns. Other instructors at the gym—former and current professionals of various disciplines—cover muay thai, boxing, Brazilian jiu-jitsu, and, of course, MMA. The gym is home to a handful of MMA fighters who compete at the amateur level, and boast a nearly four-year long uninterrupted winning streak. The varied training regimen, which includes intense conditioning classes affectionately referred to as "The Eliminator," aims to produce well-rounded fighters with the strength, conditioning, and confidence to wear shorts of any length, at any time.