Owner/Head Instructor

Watson Martial Arts Owner/Head Instructor

Where It Began

Kyle Watson has dedicated nearly half his life to practicing and teaching martial arts. He began his journey while in college at the University of Illinois, where he earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Education.  In 1999, Kyle started down his martial arts path with Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and Jeet Kune Do. Then, over time he began to acquire skills in other disciplines, devoting a great deal of time to Muay Thai Kickboxing and Wrestling.

Kyle continually looked to test his techniques and challenge himself. He began competing regularly, including several trips to train and compete in Brazil, the mecca of Jiu-Jitsu. Kyle then broadened his competition endeavors to include Mixed Martial Arts. He fought throughout the U.S. and even in Costa Rica and the Middle East. He is also one of the few individuals to reach the pinnacle of their sport, as he has had six fights with the biggest organization in the industry, the “Ultimate Fighting Championship.”

Kyle has also had the privilege of coaching many champions in both BJJ and MMA. He has traveled the globe to instruct and prepare contestants. From Japan to Russia, the UK to Australia, Kyle has been able to coach at the highest levels.

 

Watson Martial Arts Owner/Head Instructor

Teaching Martial Arts

While Kyle sharpens his own skills in training and competition, his strength and true passion is teaching others. Therefore, he is continually striving to not only become a better competitor, but also a better teacher and role model. With this relentless pursuit of improvement, Kyle embodies the popular quote, “To become a great teacher, you must never stop being a student.”

While many martial arts instructors hold day jobs and only teach in the evenings or weekends, Kyle is devoted to teaching full time. This is evident through his meticulous instruction and the frequent successes of his students. Below you will see Kyle’s martial arts background and some of his many accomplishments. With his vast knowledge, skill, and experience, he is the best choice to help you achieve your martial arts goals!

Watson Martial Arts Owner/Head Instructor

Martial Arts Background:

  • Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu: 3rd Degree Black Belt
  • Muay Thai Kickboxing: 10 years of experience
  • Extensive Weapons Training: Stick/Knife/Firearms

Mixed Martial Arts Experience and Accomplishments

  • Professional MMA Record: 19-8-1
  • 17 of 19 wins are finishes (15 – submissions, 2 – TKO’s)
  • UFC Veteran
  • Semi-Finalist on The Ultimate Fighter Season 12
  • Total Fight Challenge Lightweight Champion
  • Kage One Lightweight Champion
  • Competitor on Season 4 of Bodog Fight, “Paradise Lost (Costa Rica) (Received “Most Technical Fight Award”)
  • Experience against top lightweights

 

Watson Martial Arts Owner/Head Instructor

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Experience and Accomplishments:

  • 2021 Memphis International Open IBJJF Jiu-Jitsu Championship: Master 3 Medium-Heavy Black Belt 1st Place
  • 2021 Memphis International Open IBJJF Jiu-Jitsu No-Gi Championship: Master 3 Medium-Heavy Black Belt 1st Place
  • 2021 Memphis International Open IBJJF Jiu-Jitsu No-Gi Championship: Master 3 Open Class Black Belt 1st Place
  • Fuji World Pro: Main Event Champion (winning $2,500 and a DVD deal with BJJ Fanatics)
  • 2019 Kansas City International Open IBJJF Jiu-Jitsu Championship: Master 2 Medium-Heavy Black Belt 2nd Place
  • 2019 Chicago Spring International Open IBJJF Jiu-Jitsu Championship: Master 2 Middleweight Black Belt 2nd Place
  • 2019 IBJJF Austin Winter International Open Championship: Master 2 Middleweight Black Belt 1st Place
  • 2018 IBJJF Pan Jiu-Jitsu No-Gi Championship: Master 2 Middleweight Black Belt 2nd Place
  • Respect 4 Professional Grappling Event – Superfight Champion
  • 2018 Washington D.C. International Open IBJJF Jiu-Jitsu No-Gi Championship: Master 2 Medium-Heavy Black Belt 1st Place
  • 2018 Washington D.C. International Open IBJJF Jiu-Jitsu Championship: Master 2 Middleweight Black Belt 3rd Place
  • 2018 Chicago Spring International Open IBJJF Jiu-Jitsu: Master 2 Middleweight Black Belt 1st Place
  • 2017 IBJJF Pan Jiu-Jitsu No-Gi Championship: Master 2 Middleweight Black Belt 3rd Place
  • 2017 IBJJF Pan Jiu-Jitsu No-Gi Championship: Master 2 Open Weight Black Belt 3rd Place
  • 2016 American National Jiu-Jitsu No-Gi Championship: Master 2 Middleweight Black Belt 3rd Place
  • 2016 American National Jiu-Jitsu Championship: Master 2 Middleweight Black Belt 3rd Place
  • 2016 Houston Open IBJJF Jiu-Jitsu Championship: Master 2 Open Weight Black Belt 3rd Place
  • Respect 2 Professional Grappling Event – Superfight Champion
  • 2015 American National Jiu-Jitsu No-Gi Championship: Master 2 Middleweight Black Belt 2nd Place
  • 2015 American National Jiu-Jitsu Championship: Master 2 Middleweight Black Belt 3rd Place
  • 2015 Chicago Spring International Open IBJJF No-Gi Championship: Adult Middleweight Black Belt 2nd Place
  • 2015 Chicago Spring International Open IBJJF Championship: Master 1 Middleweight Black Belt 3rd Place
  • Respect 1 Professional Grappling Event – Superfight Champion
  • 2014 New York Summer International Open IBJJF Championship: Master 1 Middleweight Black Belt 2nd Place
  • 2014 New York Summer International Open IBJJF Championship: Master 1 Open Weight Black Belt 3rd Place
  • 2014 New York Spring International Open IBJJF Championship: Master 1 Middleweight Black Belt: 2nd Place
  • 2014 New York Spring International Open IBJJF Championship: Master 1 Open Weight Black Belt 3rd Place
  • 2014 San Francisco International Open IBJJF Championship: Master 1 Middleweight Black Belt 2nd Place
  • 2013 New York International Open IBJJF Championship: Master Middleweight Black Belt 1st Place
  • 2013 Chicago Winter International Open IBJJF Championship: Master Lightweight Black Belt 3rd Place
  • 2013 Chicago Winter International Open IBJJF Championship: Master Open Weight Black Belt 3rd Place
  • 2013 Chicago Winter International Open No-Gi IBJJF Championship: Master Middleweight Black Belt 2nd Place
  • 2013 San Francisco International Open IBJJF Championship: Master Lightweight Black Belt 2nd Place
  • 2013 San Francisco International Open IBJJF Championship: Master Open Weight Black Belt 3rd Place
  • 2012 Pan Jiu-Jitsu No-Gi Championship: Lightweight Black Belt 3rd Place
  • 2012 Pan Jiu-Jitsu No-Gi Championship: Open Weight Black Belt 3rd Place
  • 2011 IBJJF Chicago International Open: Lightweight Black Belt Master 2nd Place
  • 2010 IBJJF Pan Championships (Irvine, CA): Lightweight Brown Belt Master 1st Place
  • 2009 International Masters/Seniors Tournament (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil): Lightweight Brown Belt 2nd Place
  • 2009 International Masters/Seniors Tournament (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil): Open Weight Brown Belt 2nd Place
  • 2009 NAGA Indiana Championships: Brown Belt 1st Place
  • 2007 No-Gi World Championships: Lightweight Purple Belt 3rd Place
  • 2007 Extreme Grappling Open: Open Weight Purple Belt 1st Place
  • Multiple wins as Purple Belt in 2006 / 2007 Pan American Games and 2005 Mundials (BJJ World Championships)
  • 2006 Extreme Grappling Open: Lightweight Invitational Pro Division 1st Place
  • 2006 Hoosier Open: Lightweight Purple Belt 1st Place
  • 2006 Corral’s Combat Classic: Lightweight Purple Belt 1st Place
  • Multiple Time NAGA No-Gi, Blue, and Purple Belt Champion
  • 2005 Extreme Grappling Open: Lightweight Invitational Pro Division 2nd Place
  • 2004 Arnold / Gracie Worlds: Lightweight Blue Belt 1st Place
  • 2003 Relson Gracie Nationals: Lightweight Blue Belt 1st Place
  • 1st Southwest BJJ Championship (Phoenix, AZ): Lightweight Blue Belt 1st Place