Co-founder, Kaikudo Martial Arts Academy
Director of Tai Chi and Internal Martial Arts
Host of ‘Dao Yin Qigong’ on AIB
Michael Issa has been a life-long student of traditional martial arts since the age of six and is now the founder of Kaikudo Martial Arts Academy in Atlanta, Ga. Issa studied Taido under Uchida sensei and Okochi sensei for 10 years before exploring other styles such as Aikido, Wing Chun and wrestling. In 2006, he began training under Wudang Master Yun Xiang Tseng (Chen), a 14th generation Zhang Sanfeng lineage holder and 26th generation Longmen (Dragon Gate) Priest (wudangtao.com). Issa has studied extensively under Master Chen in the Daoist arts of Tai Chi, Xing Yi, Qigong and External Qi Healing. He is certified by Master Chen and “Chi for Longevity, Inc.” to teach the Wudang Internal Arts (Certification Link). In October 2011, Issa was elected Team Coach of the U.S. Wu Dang Wushu Association, which sent 20 competitors to Hubei, China for the International Wu Dang Tai Chi Competition. His team numbered in gold and silver medalist. Issa, himself, won four gold medals.
Issa is well-known for his easy-to-follow instructions and ability to translate eastern theory into a western context. Kaiser Permanente hired Issa as a ‘Tai Chi Health Coach’ to teach tai chi to faculty and staff at the University of Georgia, Athens (article) from 2014 to 2015. Michael Issa is currently the host of a TV show on the AIB Network called “Dao Yin Qigong” (http://www.aibtv.com/daoyinqigong/), where he guides viewers through graceful, stretching movements combined with slow, measured breathing to enhance qi-flow and promote healing. Issa has been a regular guest speaker on the health benefits of Tai Chi at the CDC, as well as at the “Celebration of Life Conference” in Atlanta, GA for cancer survivors and caregivers.
In addition to studying Wudang internal martial arts, Michael Issa has also contributed to meditation research and published with Dr. Charles Raison and Geshe Lobsang Negi at Emory University’s Mind-Body Program. Their research found direct correlations between meditation practice and lowering the physiological response to stress after only 8 weeks of compassion meditation training. These findings have great implications in reducing our risk for chronic disease and mental health problems such as depression. During his research at Emory, Issa also studied Tibetan Lojung (compassion) meditation under Geshe Lobsang Negi, a renowned Tibetan monk and Faculty member at Emory University.
- 1993 and 1996 Gold & Silver Medalist at the International Taido Friendship Games in Japan
- 2004 Graduate of the University of Michigan
- 2004-2005 Fulbright Scholar to Syria
- 2006 Co-founder of Kaikudo, LLC.
- 2008 Certified Tai Chi and Qigong Instructor by ‘Chi for Longevity, Inc.’
- 2009 Guest Speaker at the Celebration of Life Conference for cancer survivors
- 2010 Certified External Qi Healer by ‘Chi for Longevity, Inc.’
- 2010Published meditation research with Dr. Charles Raison and Geshe Lobsang Negi
- 2011 Team Coach of the S. Wu Dang Wushu Association
- 2011 Winner of 4 Gold Medals at the 2011 International Wu Dang Tai Chi Competition
- 2012 and 2015 Guest Speaker at the CDC, Center for Disease Control
- 2013-2015 Tai Chi Health Coach for Kaiser Permanente
- 2015-2016 TV host of ‘Dao Yin Qigong’ on the AIB