Combat Vision MMA spoke to head coach/owner of Fu Dog Martial Arts and professional MMA fighter Iain Feenan. Iain is a seven-time Scottish Judo champion and has over 20 years experience in Judo and Combat Sports. Fu Dog Martial Arts operates out of Lyneburn Industrial Estate in Dunfermline, Fife.
Thank you for taking the time to speak to Combat Vision MMA, Iain. When was Fu Dog Martial Arts formed and why?
“Fu Dog Martial Arts was formed March 2017. The reason behind this was initially to help grow Carnegie Judo Club. As a club, we were restricted in what we could offer our members due facility limitations. I also wanted to offer the opportunity for people to try other martial arts such as MMA, Boxing and Muay Thai Boxing etc”
“Ultimately, I wanted to provide a purpose build and unique facility with experienced and elite coaching to help expand Judo, Martial Arts and Strength and Conditioning in the Fife and Dunfermline area”
“Fu Dog also works very closely with The Fighting Chance Project (Scotland), a charity that provides disadvantaged children with the opportunity to get involved with Judo. I’m happy to say that Fu Dog is the official home of the charity, although they deliver and work in schools across Scotland”
Tell us about the transition for you to still be a professional MMA fighter to now being a coach and gym owner?
“Well, the initial transition has meant I have had to sacrifice my own training. I expected this, as my priority had to be establishing the gym and ensuring that I was offering a high standard of coaching and classes”
“Down the line, I will have to find a balance that allows me to continue to train and compete. The good thing about coaching, is that I am analysing techniques in a different way, than if I was just training them. This I feel, will make me a better fighter in the long run”
Looking at the concept of Fu Dog Martial Arts. To opening and training your own students. Has this always been a dream for you and how does it feel now it has become a reality.
“I have been coaching Judo since I was 15 years old. So, this is just a continuation of that. In terms of MMA, I train and compete under the best coach (James Doolan) and team in Scotland (Higher Level MMA). So, I am carrying that experience across into my coaching of MMA”
“I have to say that it is very rewarding seeing the progression of the guys and girls that are coming into the gym. The Judo club, is going from strength to strength. The MMA guys are all beginners and have improved at an unbelievable rate and the ladies that are coming in to do the MMA fit classes, are doing fantastic in reaching their goals”
In your opinion Iain, what do you think is the best aspect of coaching.
“The best aspect of coaching, is seeing the progression of all the students walking through the door. Whether they are there to get fit, try something new or to compete in the future, it’s a pleasure to watch them engage in the classes. To have fun, learn and improve their skill set”
Has there been an individual goal you have in mind and have been working towards for the gym.
“The goal for the gym is to provide a safe and enjoyable environment to learn martial arts. I want Fu Dog to be a place where people come to learn, build friendships and walk out feeling like a new person”
“I also want to make a difference to people’s lives and to have a positive impact on the local community. Personally, in terms of Judo and MMA, I want to produce future champions”