About The Open Matt

A Place for Creative Connection and Practice
The Open Matt is a small dojo warehouse in Oakland where martial arts, yoga, and other good things happen inside.  Kind of like a speakeasy for your health, run by Matt Lucas, man of action.

Nondescript, simple, and if you don’t plan on showing up here, you won’t.  Wise men say… if you don’t seek it then it doesn’t exist.  I’m sure they’d also say that if you have to search for parking for 30 minutes that’s a waste of time.

I’ve been practicing martial arts, yoga, and music since I was a kid.  I got serious around 5 or 6 years old.  By the 3rd grade I was going every day. I wasn’t that good, I wasn’t that strong, I wasn’t that coordinated, but I was on a path of turning all of my “weakness” into my strengths.  Still am.

You see, I had bad joints and a bad back as a kid.  The structural conditioning and daily rigors of practice helped remedy a state in my body that was considered a disorder.  My adhd wasn’t helping either, however, for some reason I could focus during practice.  Come to find out my “disorders” were really just cries for truth, practice, and a path towards good health and empowerment.

Open mat times in dojos and/or temples were the times that we came to practice.  There may be a master there, or some senior students, but they’re not teaching. This is time to practice what you’ve learned, and develop a relationship between you and your practice.  To integrate knowledge, to connect with others, and how they learn too.  If we show up and follow the leader everyday, are we learning or repeating what we see and hear.  My teachers would always say that that behavior is for monkeys, toddlers, and parrots.   We can only buy skill with the currency of time and energy… practice.

Thus the open mat.

There are no shortages of classes in the Bay area, where we can go and follow along and get in shape.  However, with rent being so high and salaries needing to not only feed us, but also keep roofs over our heads,  not to mention a decent pair of fashionably accepted yoga pants are a good 80 bux these days.  Wow.  Schools now have to start class at 3, it ends at 4:30 and the next one needs to be starting within 15 minutes or they’re not gonna be able to afford to keep the lights on.  This is the reasoning for The Open Matt, to give time to integrate and connect.

First off…We’re here to practice, share and evolve.

Second… Stay after, I’m not gonna rush you out.

Third… I’m in an out of the way location (yet close to everything) for a couple reasons, and when you get here you’ll see why.

There’s tons of parking right up front, and a garden right in front.  There’s space to breath, your car is safe, we’re right off the interstate, the weather is good.  etc… Is it an urban utopia?   No way… it’s a (dojo) warehouse in a huge parking lot, and inside there’s a good place to practice and move towards good health.  All the gear is great, the information is better, and with the caliber of teachers in this space and the lifestyle that has been created and shared here… I guess, for me, it is kind of a utopia.

There are morning practices, afternoons, nights, kids, adults, bodyworkers, workshops, musicians, gardeners, cooks, motorcycles, bikes, rollerskates.  Healers and gurus coming in from all over the world use this space as that “speak easy”… This is where we come to get away from the consumerist based health industry. To model that it’s really an attainable lifestyle and not a list of gadgets and trinkets that you “need” to purchase or you’ll never reach your goals… we all need to know that you don’t need us either, you’re fine.  We choose our teachers and serve the practice.  Coming here and practicing is a choice and there is knowledge here to move us towards a healthy, happy, empowered state of being in this world.   Hi…

*Natal Astrology Reading = 3 Sessions, 10-Year Cycle = 2 Sessions, Qi Character Reading = 1 Session