TATEKI "tech" MATSUDA
Born in and raised in Tokyo, Japan, Tateki used to play baseball for his life. After years of playing baseball, he made a big decision to study sports science in U.S where he can study more advanced sports science than Japan. In opposite of his passion and dream of contributing to the Japanese sporting world, he was uncertain of what to do physically after the last season of baseball in high school senior year. As studying English and preparing for studying abroad, one of his friends gave him an opportunity to put boxing gloves on his hands and train in kickboxing at a school classroom. Without facilities and Martial arts coaches, Tateki just enjoyed training and was completely absorbed in martial arts. His youthfulness brought him a challenge of competing All Japan full contact Karate tournament and victories. At the same time, he realized precious support by friends and got more motivated to get into martial arts.
By Mark DellaGrotte
When Tateki first came to the U.S, he didn't think he would take up martial arts. Meeting Kru Mark DellaGrotte was just start for a long journey in U.S. “It was like the karate kid in reverse,” joked DellaGrotte. “He was the Asian guy with the busted accent and I was the teacher. I knew right away the type of person that Tateki is. He's the type of student that I look for – hard worker, dedicated, very traditional, and very loyal.”
After moved to Massachusetts to further his education, He first earned a bachelor's degree in Sports Movement Science for Coaching from Salem State University in 2009 and then graduated with a master's degree in Applied Nutrition for Fitness from Northeastern University in 2013. Academic accomplishments of that nature require a tremendous amount of focus and discipline, and Tateki continuing to progress his career in MMA at the same time is an exceptional feat. He made professional MMA debut in 2008, and after competing primarily in regional promotions across New England. In 2014, Tateki made UFC debut in September at UFC FIGHT NIGHT 50
What “Ultimate” means
Tateki was supposed to learn the importance of “teamwork” and “appreciation” from his experience in playing baseball, which is a team sport, however he learned those lessons through martial arts. At first glance, fighting appears to be a one-on-one sport. A fighter is alone competing in the cage, but Tateki always says "I am representing the team and supported by teammates, sponsors and fans, and MMA gives me a lot of lessons and opportunities of life." His fighting and training experiences in Thailand and Brazil gained his abilities to speak different languages and multicultural experience, and most importantly Tateki made many friends all over the world.
What ultimate means to Tateki is growing together, said, "I am a challenger fighting in the world of victory or defeat, however, my victory does not only belong to me, but my family, supporters, sponsors, teammates and fans. I would like to learn and grow as a person, as well as a professional MMA fighter through my MMA career. I always fight together and am proud of who I am and my people." Tateki continues chasing his dreams and working to make them a reality. As he always says: “challenges drive us, that’s why it’s so important to never stop challenging”.