Dojo owner hopes to make an impact
by Joe Shreve
Feb 15, 2013 | 2628 views | 0 0 comments | 7 7 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Brian Dunniway, co-owner of the newly-opened Santa Cruz Boxing and MMA, a martial arts dojo in Scotts Valley, trains with a boxing bag.
Brian Dunniway, co-owner of the newly-opened Santa Cruz Boxing and MMA, a martial arts dojo in Scotts Valley, trains with a boxing bag.
Brian Dunniway in his new Scotts Valley studio.
Brian Dunniway in his new Scotts Valley studio.

Posters of boxing legends and 12 new 100-pound training bags hang at Santa Cruz Boxing and MMA, the new Scotts Valley dojo of martial arts instructor Brian Dunniway.

Located at 208 Mount Hermon Road in the Camp Evers shopping center, the studio focuses on training techniques that can be used in mixed martial arts competition.

Dunniway, a certified personal trainer, has an extensive background in several martial arts disciplines and has served as an instructor in numerous studios, including a job at Santa Monica College as a boxing and kickboxing instructor.

For the Ben Lomond native, Santa Cruz Boxing and MMA is the first training center that he has owned and operated himself — the realization of a life-long goal.

“I fell in love with martial arts when I was young,” he said. “This has been a dream for me — I love teaching.”

Dunniway has taught martial arts since 1998.

He said the dojo will be operated as a place of training for those who want to be professional fighters, as well a place for those who seek a fun way to exercise.

“Most people gravitate toward the fitness aspect,” he said.

He added that the focus of his classes would be on perfecting technique and style in a fun atmosphere, with the workout aspect coming with the territory.

“I try to keep (the style of training) as authentic as possible,” Dunniway said.

He plans to feature classes including kickboxing, traditional boxing, a martial arts-based fitness class, and an after-school boxing class for teens.

He said his studio will also be offering Brazilian Jiu Jitsu classes led by Gustavo Froes, a fourth-degree black belt in the sport.

The Brazilian jiu jitsu classes will be offered in three different age groups: 6 to 12, 13 to 17, and 18 and older.

Dunniway’s studio officially opened Friday, Feb. 1, with a series of trial classes for potential students. A ribbon-cutting ceremony is scheduled for Thursday, Feb. 28, between 5:30 and 7 p.m..

The martial arts expert said that he was excited to become part of the Scotts Valley community and even more excited to begin teaching classes.

“I’ve accumulated a lot of knowledge,” he said. “I think it’s an awesome sport, and I want to share it with as many people as I can.”

For information: 438-2697 or

 To comment, email reporter Joe Shreve at, call 438-2500 or post a comment at

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