Experienced, dedicated and passionate.

Find out more about the history, philosophy and instructor of this combat style.


More of the Russian style of martial arts past and its beginnings.

The study of systema is a set of concepts that rely on endurance and movement.
The experience of the founder and chief instructor that has built San Antonio Systema into what it is today.

About Mr. Gonzales

Michael J. Gonzales is a Martial Arts instructor and the founder/Chief Instructor of San Antonio Systema. Thanks to his own experience as a US Marine and private security consultant, Michael focuses on helping others better themselves through mindful self-defense training and all around health and well-being.

Our school trains adults in Systema’s unique holistic health, wellness, and martial system. All people are welcome in classes: The schools only requirement is students have a desire to learn. The process can be psychologically challenging, though: unlike other forms of martial arts which award its practitioners for completing simple (or complex) tasks, Systema does not provide ranks, belts, or certificates as they go against core training philosophy that students work constantly to better themselves and free themselves from distracting emotions, including pride.

Before opening San Antonio Systema, Michael served for 8 years in the United States Marine Corps, where he was deployed in the initial combat invasion of Iraq as a squad leader. After leaving the Marine Corps in 2007, Michael entered the private security industry and worked as a protection specialist for 9 years. Work involved protecting a wide variety of clients in many different countries, ranging from Los Angeles, to Japan, China, Turkey, Singapore, Mexico, Canada, and England.
Today, Michael works as a private security consultant for a prestigious company based in San Antonio, Texas . He attends the University of the Incarnate Word, where he is working towards a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology.  Michael has hosted therapeutic and relaxing Systema workshops for various groups, including for The Boys and Girls Club of America and with the city of San Antonio. Besides his interest in martial arts, Michael is also passionate in helping the nation’s veterans and wounded warriors, especially those suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Defensive oriented training with the mind and body taken into consideration.