Jesse Swain is the head instructor and owner of American Muay Thai in Parkville, MD. With a combined combat sports record of 24-2, his experience includes Boxing (5-0), Muay Thai (15-1) and MMA (4-1). He also holds a blue belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu under Monroe Hall (Baltimore BJJ) and he serves in the United States Airforce National Guard as a Munitions Technician.
A native of the Highlandtown neighborhood in Baltimore, Jesse’s foray into martial arts started when Jamie Rallo, one of his middle school teachers, encouraged him to take up wrestling in order to deal with bullying. Following Mr. Rallo’s advice, Jesse joined the wrestling team at Eastern Technical High as a freshman, and continued on to wrestle for their varsity team. After graduation in 2009 from Eastern Tech, he enlisted in the National Guard, where he still serves today.
In the summer before shipping off to basic training, and after seeing the famous UFC fight between Matt Hughes and Carlos Newton, he enrolled in Combat Sports Center (CSC) of Maryland so he could learn Muay Thai. After his first class, with Coach Greg Dorsey, he was hooked and began attending every possible class offered at the time. Coach Greg’s tutelage and guidance encouraged him to round out his fighting skills - not only by learning to strike, but by learning other disciplines CSC offered including Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.
With only two months of training under his belt, Jesse eagerly signed up for an amateur MMA fight. Still new to the world of striking, he leveraged his wrestling base, taking down and submitting his opponent two minutes into the first round. Following the win, his competitive spirit drove him to focus even harder on improving. He became a fixture in not only all of the available classes, but began to work with any available training partners in open gym sessions.
A few weeks after his first fight, Jesse enrolled in a WKA Novice MMA tournament in Hampton, VA. He leveraged his newly sharpened skills and he won all of his fights, grinding out opponents to take home the championship.
Following his standout performance in that tournament, it became difficult for his coaches to find opponents through local MMA promotions. Eventually a tough, experienced opponent was found and Jesse was served his first loss, a third round submission.
Ever the competitor, and thankful for the lessons learned, he found an even deeper appreciation for the finite details and sought to become a high level striker. He focused diligently on his striking; spending endless hours with Coach Greg sharpening his craft, driven by his desire to ensure he was well rounded as a fighter, and had the tools to compete with anyone.
After some time away for basic training; Jesse found himself back in Maryland, balancing his career in the Guard and training at CSC. With his growing passion for striking, he decided to begin testing himself in regional Muay Thai tournaments where he racked up an impressive 15-1 record. This allowed him the opportunity to travel and fight in tournaments along the eastern seaboard, eventually leading to him winning an international Muay Thai tournament in Italy.
When CSC closed it’s doors, his crew of training partners dispersed to other gyms. Naturally, this lead to new relationships and opportunities when many of them came calling, asking him for coaching and sparring assistance as they trained for upcoming fights.
Jesse found himself spending time training at other notable gyms with world-class coaches including Henry Smith (Rude Boy Muay Thai). Through Henry, he was invited to go to the BMF Ranch in Albaquerque, NM and trained with Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone in preparation for a UFC fight against Miles Jury. The BMF Ranch is a notoriously intense and focused training environment with intense sparring and world class fighters working to prepare each other for major competitions.
His time there reasserted his belief in himself as he was able to keep up with some of the world’s best fighters. He worked and sparred with various MMA stars including Cowboy himself, Paul Felder, Jon Bones Jones, and Pat “Bam Bam” Healy.
While the experience of working with and being able to keep up with world class fighters was satisfying, Jesse really began to feel calling as a coach. He returned to Baltimore, with a vision of being able to help others achieve their goals and grow as individuals through Muay Thai. This would ultimately lead to him opening American Muay Thai in 2015.
American Muay Thai is a style that combines the best elements of boxing, Muay Thai, and Dutch-Style Kickboxing with a focus on clean technique, power, and efficiency. “If you combine boxing technique with the head movement and footwork of Muay Thai, you can be very effective at striking,” says Jesse.
The gym focuses on empowering students to develop skills from the ground up. The programs offered cater to everyone from Professional Fighters to children. It’s a welcoming and fun environment with major attention to safety, health, technique, and having fun.
-2011 WKA novice North American MMA Champion
-2012 WKA Open North American MMA Champion
-2013 WKA Open North American Muay Thai World Champion
-2013 IKF Open World Muay Thai Champion
-2013 Silver medalist at the WKA World Championship
-2013 Silver medalist at the WTKA World Championship
-2014 IKF Open World Muay Thai World Champion
-2014 U.S. International Kuo Shu Lei Tai Middle A Champion
-2014 WKA U.S Full Rule Muay Thai Champion