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Head Instructor

MY MISSION: To make a difference and help people transform their life through martial arts.

Master Michael Sandham
6th Degree Black Belt
(Rank of Master)

4th Degree Black Sash
(Rank of Sifu)

Master Michael Sandham has been training in both the internal and external arts of Shaolin-Do since 2001. He owns and operates Shaolin Martial Arts in Lakeway, TX and is supremely dedicated to the study of the martial arts.  


He is a passionate teacher who inspires students of all ages and ability levels to utilize the art of Shaolin-Do in order to guide their personal development and achieve their life goals.


Shaolin Martial Arts has an atmosphere of community and mutual support that helps students learn at their own pace and get the most out of these ancient teachings. We promote mutual respect and always work tirelessly to be the best we can be and help others along the way.

Some things about Master Mike...

  • Holds a B.A. in Mass Communication from Southwest Texas State University (now Texas State University).

  • Minored in Photography.

  • Began studying Shaolin-Do in San Marcos, TX at the age of 20.

  • Started teaching in 2002-2003 in San Marcos.

  • Certified Instructor by Grandmaster Sin Kwang The'.

  • Moved to Austin in 2010 and began teaching for Master Joe Schaefer at the North Austin Shaolin-Do school.

  • Launched Shaolin Martial Arts in Lakeway in November 2014.

  • Now a full-time martial arts instructor.  This is his day job.


  • Attended numberous seminars with Grandmaster Sin The' or other Master-level instructors, constantly learning new forms and weapons.

  • Taught many seminars on diverse topics such as: self-defense, tai chi, meditation, chi kung, animal styles, and more.

  • Member of the Shaolin-Do Association since 2008.

  • Tested to 4th Degree Black Belt in Kung Fu in 2013.

  • Still attends class with Senior Master Joe Schaefer in Austin to learn new material and keep up his practice.

  • Tested to 5th Degree (Associate Master) in March of 2018.


  • Traveled to China in 2014 with 95 people from Shaolin-Do schools across the nation.

  • Won multiple 1st place trophies or medals in Shaolin-Do tournaments, in both the forms (katas) divisions as well as the advanced black belt sparring divisions.

    • In 2014, he took 1st in sparring, 2nd in Tai Chi, and 3rd in open hand (katas)


  • He considers Master Sean O'Brien to be his first teacher and the biggest source of inspiration during his early years of training (2001-2010). 

  • Devotes many hours to internal energy practice, as well as the Iron Palm conditioning techniques of Shaolin.

  • Tested to 3rd Degree Black Sash in Tai Chi in 2014.

  • Tested to 4th Degree Black Sash in February 2020.

  • Promoted to 6th Degree Black Belt Master in February 2024. 

  • He is a lifelong student of Shaolin-Do and is always one of the most excited students to see a new form or technique.  The journey never ends...

MY MISSION: To make a difference and help people transform their life through martial arts.

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