Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu needs no introduction. Anyone who has ever seen a UFC has seen the devastating submission techniques, takedowns, and dominating control position that BJJ has to offer. While MMA is a combination of BJJ, wrestling, and kickboxing, the Gracie Family has proven that without BJJ, a fighter will be submitted quickly and easily. As for fitness, there is no equal to Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. The pushing, pulling, twisting, and cardio involved in our daily sparring sessions will make any other workout seem too easy.
There is no question that Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is the best martial art out there for self defense as well. Not only do you get daily practice with a RESISTING opponent (many other “self-defense” martial arts cannot offer this) in a SAFE environment. You will learn how to escape when someone considerably larger than you is holding you down, you will learn how to take someone down and end altercations quickly and easily.
I’m writing this from my home office in San Jose, California, some 35 miles away from Kaijin in Santa Cruz where I’ve trained since 2009. Since moving to San Jose in March, 2012, I have been coming back to Kaijin to train three to four times a week. I first entered through the doors of Kaijin as a curious graduate student eager to test out mixed-martial-arts. I now train at Kaijin because I want very much to grow as a person and martial artist, to push myself in good-natured competition, and above all else, to be part of a tight-knit team of individuals who are invested in each other’s growth. I know of no better place where these things can be accomplished than at Kaijin.
When I turned 49 I joined Kaijin and the last year and a half of training has been a great experience for me. At 50 I’m physically and mentally in better shape than I have been in the last two decades. I have had big improvements in my strength, dexterity and stamina. Other aspects in my life have seemed to improve as well. I also appreciate how helpful everyone in class is while training. It is a privilege to train with such skilled individuals. I hope to continue to roll for a long time.
As a father of three and a physician, I had my children try various programs with the goal of improving their confidence, discipline, mental acuity, and fitness. Brazilian Jiu Jitsu at Kaijin has been the ideal combination for my middle son. He started out at age seventeen and just won the Gracie Worlds Submission Only tournament in Santa Clara last weekend. Garth and Clement are amazing coaches and I am very excited about the progress my son has made over the last several years. We have often mentioned how lucky we are that Kaijin is on the west side of Santa Cruz and how the only thing that would've been better would've been if my son had started even younger. Jiu Jitsu has the mental challenges of chess, the physical challenges of wrestling, a team spirit, and strong motivation to stay on a healthy diet, and become as fit as possible. When we travel, we have visited other gyms, which helped us truly appreciate how special Kaijin is. As such, I encourage kids from five years old and older to come and see what the Kaijin family is all about. It has been my experience that almost everyone who comes to Kaijin is similarly impressed and stays to learn more.
The Kaijin Boxing program follows USA Boxing (Olympic-style) amateur boxing standards. Here are the basics:
1. Defend yourself at all times. Keep your hands up and your elbows tight to your body. Face your opponent and keep your eyes on his/her shoulders. You are safe in your stance. The only place safer is outside of the ring. Eventually, your hands will feel like they are resting next to your face. You’re not holding your hands up, your hands are resting in their natural position by your face.
2. Punches in bunches. Typically, the boxer that throws more punches wins the match. If both boxers are throwing a lot of punches, the boxer who throws more straight punches wins the match. This requires cardio. Lots.
3. Boxing is simple. There are four punches, footwork, and head movement. I only teach four punches: the jab, the cross, the hook, and the uppercut. Keep your feet about shoulder-width, don’t cross your feet, and don’t walk into your opponent’s power punch. Move your head. A lot. This is harder than you think but even harder for your opponent to deal with. The rest is cardio and muscle memory gained from repetition.
4. Use your core. That includes all the muscles connected to your hips: gluts, lats, abs. This is where your power and speed comes from. Boxers have strong cores because, if they’re doing it correctly, the core is what boxers use the most. That and their lungs. Did I mention cardio?
Kaijin’s boxing program lead by the ever knowledgeable Aaron Oreb, is my favorite part of the week. Whether you are new to the sport, are a seasoned veteran, or just want a killer workout this class has something to offer you. Aaron takes a hands on approach to develop each individuals skills at their own pace. After training under Aaron for the past year, I am shocked at the progress that I have made. I would highly recommend anyone interested in boxing to come down and train.
Every class at Kaijin is my favorite part of the day. The boxing class is great and Aaron, the coach, is amazing. I’ve seen him turn first-time punchers into good sparring partners. I’ve been kickboxing and grappling for close to six years and I still learn something new almost every class thanks to Aaron. I would definitely recommend the Kaijin boxing class to anyone that is eager to learn basic skills or looking to sharpen up the experience they might already have.
The kickboxing class at Kaijin is a mix of several disciplines. Kaijin fighters compete with great success in many different styles and organizations—Muay Thai, knockdown, kickboxing, full-contact karate, kudo, Western boxing, MMA. The kickboxing at Kaijin pulls primarily from Japanese full contact and knockdown karate (Ashihara and Kyokushin) and Thai Kickboxing (Muay Thai). Instructors with extensive competitive experience in an array of styles and lengthy teaching backgrounds teach the classes.
The community in the Kaijin kickboxing class is close and supportive. We travel to each other’s fights, get together outside of class, and help each other train for upcoming fights. The Kaijin kickboxing class boasts world-class skills in a tight knit atmosphere that is perfect for everyone ranging from the hardcore competitor to the martial artist to the beginner to the person just looking to train hard.
Kickboxing at Kaijin MMA is something I look forward to every week. Whether it is working on conditioning drills, learning new techniques, practice sparring, or assisting fellow classmates in preparing for upcoming tournaments/fights, I always leave the kickboxing class feeling better than when I came in. Sam is an excellent instructor with the ability to convey his knowledge and enthusiasm of martial arts to all of his students and I am grateful to have trained with him over these past several years. Beginner and intermediate/advanced classes are both offered, so regardless of your experience level come on over and check it out.
Kaijin Kickboxing is none like any other. I’ve been training with Sam for 3+ years and I can say it never gets old. I came in as green as they come but Sam Radetsky is not only well versed in many martial arts but he is patient beyond reproach. Sam’s Kickboxing class is quite unique with a blend of styles that help you in the ring and out in the streets if need be.
We train techniques from Muay Thai, knockdown karate and plain ol’ American Kickboxing. This blend of style allows for students to combine the best basics from each style and mold and shape it into their own. The discipline of class allows for a friendly environment as we are all taught to welcome and teach what we know to the newer students. This class does teach you to defend yourself on top of being forged into an endurance monster so you are never out of breath, but the most important lessons are the ones you learn on the mat by coming in everyday and working with Sam and your peers. I highly recommend Kickboxing with Sam Radetsky at Kajin MMA.
Kids form deep and meaningful bonds in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. It might be the best thing about it.
Mini Monsters BJJ (ages 3.5 - 5)
This class is about fun and coordination and confidence. We use training exercises, obstacle courses, technical movements, and cooperative playing to improve mobility and endurance, learn new skills, and boost confidence. This will prepare the kids for more technical activities in the next Kids class.
Kaijin Kids BJJ (ages 6 - 8)
Continued fun and confidence boosting. The kids continue to develop their confidence on and off the mat. We also emphasize more team camaraderie with team building exercises. The kids continue to learn technical Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Wrestling, and Judo which is fantastic for their physical, mental, and emotional development. We also emphasize bully awareness and avoidance.
Kaijin Youth BJJ (ages 9 - 12)
For all levels, fun and safety are our primary objectives. By this age, we are introducing more sophisticated techniques in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Wrestling, and Judo as well as learning fundamentals. Your child can find the approach to grappling that works best for them, irrespective of how long they have been practicing. If your child is interested in competitions, we spend time on point scoring and strategy. As in all our classes, the kids build deep friendships with their teammates.
I just wanted to thank you for having such hard working and dedicated coaches Garth, Jay and Luke are all fantastic. Coach Jay who teaches both of my two kids 3 days a week is firm, yet fair, and really takes the time to know each child’s personality. He keeps the group focused and always motivates them to try their best. As a teacher myself I know this is hard to do, especially late in the day. I admire how he can make exercise fun for kids. When my son started training at age 5 he was one the youngest in the class. Over the past five years, I’ve seen the classes expand exponentially because students and parents alike love Jay’s techniques with the kids. My kids have grown confident and physically strong from attending Jujitsu classes at Kaijin three days each week.
My favorite part about the training my kids have gotten is when ever my daughter gets to visit her uncle who is a Navy Seal she bets she can make him and his friends tap out with her choke; and she always can! I constantly recommend Kaijin to my friends for their kids as a great place to study martial arts. Keep up the great work!
"We love Kaijin". Jeremy, Luke, Garth and all the coaches have been great for our two girls for over two years. They have provided the finest instruction and training and I feel confident in recommending them to anyone interested in Brazilian jiujitsu. Kaijin has a qualified staff and a great energetic environment where our children thrive all while becoming confident in themselves.