AKA (American Kickboxing Academy) is a very well known and successful Mixed Martial Arts academy with its roots in San Diego, California.
Their current fight team is a who’s who list of some of the top names in the sport. I feel like they have a good chance to capture UFC titles in 3 weight divisions with Cain Velasquez (heavyweight), Daniel Cormier (light heavyweight) and Khabib Nurmagomedov (lightweight).. but we’ll see how things play out.
The notable fighters representing AKA in competition are too many to list, but one name you may be familiar with is Mike Swick. Mike has been coming to Thailand to train since 2000 (I recall watching video footage he uploaded from Sitpholek Gym back in 2001) and now, nearly 15 years later, he’s opened a gym of his own.
Things seem to be off to a good start as they’ve been bringing in some talented trainers. The Brazilian Jiu Jitsu program is being run by a 2nd degree black belt out of the Checkmat camp named Marco “Sharpei” Machado. Marco is a 10x Brazilian state champion, 2x American national champion and once ranked 3rd at the World Jiu Jitsu championship (Mundials), which is the most competitive and prestigious BJJ tournament there is.
On the Muay Thai side, they’ve brought in Fahsuchon Sit-O to head up the program. Fahsuchon has captured multiple Lumpinee stadium and Thailand national titles and was the recipient of the prestigious “fighter of the year” award in 2000. He has a very technical style of fighting and still fights actively against past veterans of the sport on special event cards at Lumpinee stadium. If you have the opportunity to train with him, request that he spend some time working on front kicks because that’s one of the techniques he’s mastered and known for.
They’re just starting out, so they don’t have a big roster of Muay Thai trainers at the time of this writing, but another one of the trainers they’ve brought in was the trainer to Doug Anderson in Ayutthaya on the “Fight Quest” Muay Thai episode (easily found on Youtube).
Mike Swick, who has been fighting for the UFC for nearly a decade, will be coaching the MMA team and they’ve brought in a strength and conditioning coach as well.
The gym is located in the Rawai district of Phuket, within walking distance from a beach. The address is 47/31-32 Moo 4, Rawai and they’ve uploaded a video showing how to get to the gym from Chalong circle via a motorbike..
They have plans to build a variety of on-site accommodations but in the meantime, they’ve partnered with some nearby accommodation providers. They have an overview of some of the options near the gym on their website.
Training Info and Photos
From the looks of their schedule, they have a variety of classes running throughout the entire day. There’s strength and conditioning classes, beginner/intermediate/advanced BJJ classes (both with and without the Gi), MMA specific fighter training and the standard morning and afternoon Muay Thai sessions.
With so many sessions throughout the day, there’s a variance in the pricing depending on what you want to do. You can check out their website for pricing info on the training packages.