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Justin grew up in Fridley MN and has always had a passion for Martial Arts. Since he was young, he already dabbled in Taekwondo, wrestling, and then Kung-Fu.
He became fascinated with Jiu-jitsu after watching the slim and undersized Royce Gracie dominate a series of much larger opponents at UFC 1. He went in search of a gym that taught Jiu-Jitsu. He trained for several years under Professor Greg Nelson and Professor Ishmael Bentley in both Jiu-Jitsu and Muay Thai Kickboxing at The Academy in Brooklyn Park since 2007.
He followed Professor Bentley to M-Theory Martial Arts in St. Louis Park when the latter moved. Justin has competed both locally, and nationally. Most notably placing 3rd at the IBJJF Pan American Championships as a brown belt in both 2017, and again in 2018. Professor Bentley promoted Justin to the rank of Jiu-Jitsu Black Belt March 24, 2018.
Justin currently resides in Blaine, MN and when he is not teaching at Prodigy, you can find him running a successful restoration company (www.InnovativeBuilding.com). He is a loving husband, and father to a young girl.
Justin has spent countless hours developing his technical craft, and enjoys passing on that knowledge, and helping other people to reach their goals.
Thao has been training Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu since 2002 and is a IBJJF certified 1st degree Black Belt who has competed and medaled locally and nationally.
Most recently, winning silver at the 2018 IBJJF Pan American Championship.
Thao believes that Jiu-Jitsu is not just a hobby, but is a way of life. He is focused on using the art as a vehicle of change in his students’ lives.
Apart from his success in the field of Jiu-jitsu, Thao is also a IT consultant and entrepreneur.
Mike grew up in Grand Rapids, MN. He first started his journey as a Martial Artist studying TaeKwonDo under Master Scott Peterson at Northland TaeKwonDo.
Mike took up law enforcement in college while continuing his TaeKwonDo training. After college, Mike was hired by the Minneapolis Police Department. He continued his martial arts training and eventually earned his Black Belt in TaeKwonDo. He also learned Muay Thai and later earned a Black Rank at Minnesota Martial Arts Academy under Professor Greg Nelson.
He started training in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and became an instructor at M-Theory Martial Arts in St. Louis Park, MN. He has earned a 1st Degree Black Belt under Professor Ishmael Bentley. Mike became the first active police officer in Minnesota to earn a Black Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.
At the Minneapolis Police Department, Mike had implemented Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu into defensive tactics training and was an instructor there for over 10 years. Mike is currently a police officer with the Minneapolis Police Department and has lived in Blaine, MN for the past 15 years with his family, with two of his children currently in the Blaine school system.
Japhy is a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Black Belt and Muay Thai Black Rank. He started Muay Thai at the Minnesota Martial Arts Academy in 2001 after seeing a poster in Amsterdam advertising Muay Thai fights, which went well with his love of Thai food and being a boxing fan.
In 2006, he started Brazillian Jiu Jitsu knowing that the Academy’s World Class Instruction was something he would regret not participating in. He received his Black Belt from Professor Ishmael Bentley in 2018.
Notable Accomplishments: Gold Medals at the Masters World, Pan & Rio International Championships (Masters Purple Belt), Pan Champion & Silver Medalist (Masters Brown)
Attended the Muay Thai Associations Oregon Camp 2x, 1-2 Amateur Fight Record.
Japhy works in the Virtual Design & Construction department for MG McGrath, specializing in Computational Design.
Danny is a Brown Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. A loving husband and father of 3.
His dedication to Jiu-Jitsu reflects in his teaching and coaching of the kids. Danny love’s working with the kids and helping them become great Jiu-Jitsu practitioners and helping them grow as people.
Aside from his passion and commitment to the martial arts, Danny is an avid fisherman and an aspiring Police Officer.
Phi is Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Brown belt and believes that Jiu-Jitsu can be used as a vehicle for personal growth, and help people come closer to achieving their true potential. A Bronze medalist at the 2018 IBJJF Pan American Championship.
Phi also enjoys backpacking, traveling the world, and is a Software engineer.
Paul Bird is a Brown Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
Sal is a Purple Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
Shane is a Brown belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
Matt is a Purple Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
Brian is a Black Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
Doug is a 1st Degree Black Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
Lucas is a Black rank in Muay Thai Kickboxing, and a Blue Belt in Brazilian Jiu-JItsu
Bill is a Blue belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
Nina is a Blue Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
Coach Dave is a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Blue Belt.