Profiles in MHS Sports

Martial Arts Masters Hall of Famer Dino Haynes is the two-time World Champion in Full Contact Stick Fighting.

This profile on martial artist Dino Haynes is one in a series on individuals in the community who are involved with the world of sports.

Dino Haynes

At 19 years of age, Malibu resident Dino Haynes made up his mind about what he wanted to do with his life. His goals were met with skepticism, but now, at 42 years old, Haynes has achieved more than he had ever dreamed.

Haynes has advanced degree black belts in Warrior’s Heart karate, kickboxing, Tang Soo Doo, and Filipino fighting arts. In 2007, Haynes traveled to Jakarta, Indonesia, where he won the world championship in the super-heavyweight division of full contact stick fighting. Recently, Haynes traveled to City of Cebu in the Philippines, where he successfully defended his championship. Also in 2007, Haynes was inducted into the West Coast based Academy of Masters Martial Arts Masters Hall of Fame.

Haynes has also established himself as a respected stuntman, starting in 2003 as the fight director for the movie “The Hunted.” He has appeared in popular movies such as “The Break Up,” “Wedding Crashers,” “Four Christmases” and “Race to Witch Mountain,” and in such television series as “The O.C.,” “Criminal Minds” and “Knight Rider.”

As the founder and chief instructor at Warrior’s Heart Karate in Agoura Hills, Haynes instills the principles of love, honor, respect and confidence in his students.

“Mr. Haynes is the master at not just the martial arts and fighting part, but looking at people and finding what they are capable of, and finding success in them,” fellow Malibu resident Ted Silverberg, who earned a black belt under Haynes and now teaches alongside him, said.

Speaking with Haynes’ students, they told not only about being able to defend themselves physically against bullies, but also being able to resolve conflicts verbally as well. The students said that the perseverance Haynes taught them has helped them in school, and they feel more confident when answering teacher’s questions. Most importantly, Haynes helps his students see the world differently than they did before they started learning martial arts.

Q. You recently won the world championship in the super heavyweight division in full contact stick fighting. How does it feel to know you are the best in the world at something?

It feels really good. I am really happy after 25 years of training. Every student in here helps me train. I feel ecstatic. I always visualized being a world champion. I just never knew it would be in stick fighting. I always thought boxing, kickboxing, or karate.

Q. Describe your reaction to being told you would be inducted into the Martial Arts Masters Hall of Fame.

I am still young. It is weird already being called a Grand Master at 42 years old. It is not something I am used to. None of my students call me Master; they call me Mr. Haynes. Maybe when I am 60-plus I will feel better about it.

Q. How do you overcome nerves prior to a fight?

It is not even nerves anymore, really. It is excitement. It is like surfing. When you see a big set of waves, your heart is all excited. It is very nervous but excited energy.

Q. Describe your typical training pattern.

I wake up, eat a light breakfast and get on my mountain bike for an hour-and-a-half or two-hours. I then come home and jump into the water and paddle-surf or just surf depending on the waves. I eat really well and take a nap, and get out here and teach. I do not train with my students because I like to teach; it is their training session. I also have my Tuesday and Thursday sessions, where I train with my teacher.

Q. Have you ever had to use karate outside of a competition?

I have had to use it a lot. I am not proud of a lot of those situations, but the last one was a good one. I will not get into the details, but I will just say he became a student, and we are friends to this day.

Q. How important is it to you to pass your knowledge to others?

I represent a lot of knowledge, so it is very important for me to teach my students. I have trained with the best. All of my instructors were world-class.

Q. Your motto is love, honor, respect and confidence. Why did you pick these characteristics?

Love is the biggest personal emotion we have. If you can love, you can honor people, your school and your state. That builds to respect. We can give respect and accept it. Love, honor and respect are huge keys in life, and if you have all that, you can walk the streets with confidence.

Q. How does doing stunt work change the way you watch action movies?

I look more carefully. I look for body doubles. I look for hits and misses. I look for angles. It is kind of neat. It is fun to watch now that I know more than I did before.

Q. What is your future with stunt work?

I have not tried that hard so far, and I have done a lot already. If I tried really hard, I could get a lot more out of it. But, I do not see it being a bread-and-butter thing for me. This is me. [The karate studio] is my house. This is what I love to do. This is what I get paid to do. This is what I was meant to do. But the stunt work is awesome, and if I could get more of it, I would take it in a heartbeat.

Q. What has working with your students taught you about yourself?

I have more patience. Everybody knows that I get really impatient if you cannot get a technique right. These little guys keep me on my toes. Adults are a little easier to teach. I have learned to ease up a little bit and have fun. When I see them move and do some good fighting techniques, it could save their life. But, hopefully they will never have to use it.

Q. What is your next goal?

In two years, I am going to go to Bali. I have two years to make sure I stay in shape so I can defend my title for the second time.