Cpl. Dominic Waters lives and breathes martial arts. He takes every liberty hour he has to train with Fight Club 29, the base mixed martial arts team at the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center in Twentynine Palms, Calif. Through his outstanding work ethic and dedication to the sport, his fighting future continues to blossom. He’s a leader in his unit, Combat Logistics Battalion 7. As a pro fighter, he’s undefeated, which is a testament to his diligence and hard work. Waters primarily has a wrestling background and he relies on that strength in most of his fights. In his three pro fights he has been able to easily take his opponent to the ground and then finish him with strikes.
MARINES: What got you into mixed martial arts?
I started in high school wrestling and later became interested in MMA when watching Ultimate Fighting Championship and World Extreme Cagefighting events. When I got to (the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center) Twentynine Palms I found out about Fight Club 29. I joined and began to get deeper into MMA.
How do you feel when you’re challenged to a fight?
I am excited and confident in my training so I am never intimidated by a fight in the cage or out. I know I am better prepared than anyone I will face.
What’s one thing someone should expect when going toe-to-toe with you?
Expect to be taken down to the mat by my superior wrestling moves. Then I will use my other skills from there.
Should Marines be worried about the dangers of competitive fighting?
Absolutely not. MMA, submission grappling, and pankration are monitored and regulated by the state athletic commissions. Seldom are competitors seriously injured, and every precaution is taken to stop a match where one competitor is over matched.
Tell us about the worst beat down you have delivered?
My last MMA match ended in 58 seconds when I TKOed (technical knockout) my opponent with strikes and elbows on the ground.
What was one of your toughest fights?
My toughest fight was a wrestling match at the Armature Athletic Union Nationals in 2007. I lost in overtime to a Canadian wrestler. After that, I have never taken conditioning for granted again.
If a Marine walked up to you and said he was interested in participating in MMA, what would be your advice to him?
Be dedicated and diversify your training. This is not a casual sport; it requires a deep commitment to be successful.
Do you have any role models in life?
My coaching staff at Fight Club 29 has been extremely supportive of me and has taught me how to be a well-rounded and professional fighter.
How far do you want to go in your fighting career?
I am currently accepting a wrestling scholarship at Santa Rosa College for June, so I will be leaving the Marine Corps at the end of my enlistment in May. I would love to eventually wind up in one of the large mixed martial arts associations.
What is your favorite music to train to?
Bob Marley and the Wailers is a staple in our gym.
Have you been deployed? If so, what was your mission?
Yes, Iraq in 2009. I was a motor transportation operator for a shock/trauma platoon.
What was your hardest day of the deployment?
The day we had to rescue Marines involved in a serious MRAP (Mine Resistant Ambush Protected) accident. They were seriously injured, and it was in doubt at first if they would survive. Fortunately, all of them did.
Who in the celebrity world would you like to KO, or at least challenge to a (friendly) fight?
I would like to knock out “The Situation” from The Jersey Shore. He gets under my skin.