Principal | Kickboxing

A former United States Marine, Don Rodger is the President of Open Guard BJJ/Apex Martial Arts Center and runs the day-to-day operations. Don also oversees the kickboxing program, and coaches the teen and adult Cardio Kickboxing classes and the Competition Kickboxing team.

Don began his official martial arts journey in 2010, training in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu with Professor Geoff Balme, Wayne Spinola, and Neal Weaver at the TFTC Academy in Clayton. While at TFTC, Don trained in Kickboxing under Neal Weaver and Chad Boykin. Don fell in love with the sport of kickboxing and attended every seminar and clinic he could find. He also took private lessons with some of the area’s most recognized and respected Kickboxing and Muay Thai instructors.

In 2016, Don created Triangle Kickboxing Promotions to give amateur and professional kickboxers a venue to showcase their talent. As the first kickboxing promoter in NC in more than 13 years, Don worked with the North Carolina Boxing Authority (NCBA) to create a uniform set of rules for competitive Kickboxing/Muay Thai. Don continues to work with the NCBA to refine the rules and regulations for the sport of Kickboxing and Muay Thai in the State. Since his first event in 2016, subsequent shows have grown exponentially in size and now showcase some of the best local and national athletes.

Don is presently an official with the International Kickboxing Federation (IKF) and was selected as one of two regional IKF judges for the 2017 IKF World Classic in Orlando, Florida. He was also selected as a regional IKF judge for the 2018 IKF World Classic in Orlando, Florida. Don is currently the #1 ranked IKF Kickboxing/Muay Thai ProAm promoter in the State of North Carolina, and the top regional promoter for IKF Point Kickboxing Tournaments (PKB’s) in the Raleigh-Durham area.

Don’s passion and dedication for the sport of kickboxing is evident whether he is teaching a class, cornering fighters, working with the NCBA to improve competition kickboxing rules & regulations, or working with amateur and professional fighters as a matchmaker and kickboxing promoter.