The Pagodas Temple — the one stop shop for martial arts in Galway

The Pagodas Temple was started in 2005 by Chris Hickey, a fourth Dan black belt, the highest graded judo black belt in the west of Ireland. Mr Hickey always wanted to have his own dojo where he could pass his skill and knowledge on to others with a passion for the martial arts. This is due largely to the training he received in the Galway Judo Club, the support of his many friends, and his long time mentor Sensei John Creaven.

There are very few purpose built dojos (martial art training halls ) in the country. Galway is very fortunate to have a state of the art centre located at Unit 27, Oldenway Business Park on the Monivea Road. Mr Hickey started judo classes with the help of Sergei Alexandrov, a third Dan black belt, who also is the instructor for combat sambo, a Russian martial art.

The next martial art to join the Pagodas Temple was aikido, another martial art with its roots, like judo, in ancient Japan. The classes in aikido are given by Ronan Kane who is a second Dan black belt and a member of the Irish Aikido Federation.

The club also houses the Korean martial art taekwon-do which is run by Shane Fitzgibbon, a fifth Dan black belt, a taekwon-do world champion, and a well known authority on all aspects of fitness and nutrition. Mr Fitzgibbon is assisted by Lisa Connolly, a third Dan black belt and a highly accomplished competitor.

Then came the South Americans in the form of MuayKenSan, which is run by Raúl Sanhueza, a sixth Dan black belt grandmaster from Chile. MuayKenSan is new to Ireland and is a mixed martial arts style which has become very popular as a result of the UFC championship (cage fighting ).

The most recent discipline to join the Pagodas Temple is the traditional Japanese jujutsu. This is another of the samurai martial arts from Japan and is steeped in the original Oriental ways. This is taught by Joel Francois, a fourth Dan black belt instructor. Mr Francois has a huge knowledge of yoga which he also teaches at the dojo.

At the facility you will also find a sports therapy room run by full time expert Michael Sheehan, a neuromuscular therapist and body building instructor.

Professor Pedro offers instruction in the well known art of capoiera and the facility will soon see the opening of the much sought after Gcsj Playschool.

Whatever you want from a martial art, fitness training, and life coaching you will find at the Pagodas Temple, a family friendly and fun centre for people of all ages and abilities.

For more information contact Chris Hickey on (086 ) 2510909, e-mail [email protected], or visit


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