Aikido is the "loving protection of all beings," in the words of Morihei Ueshiba, who created the martial-arts style. Although it sometimes incorporates wooden weapons, at its heart, aikido seeks to act as a replacement for violence. Greg O'Connor, founder and chief instructor at Aikido Centers of New Jersey, brings Ueshiba's tenets to his students, who have included children and seniors, as well as members of the New Jersey State Police, the Department of Homeland Security, and the US Secret Service. O'Connor and more than 40 other instructors teach students self-defense tactics that redirect attacks, as well as more advanced methods that include wooden sword and staff training and aikido's dramatic falls and rolls.
As a former corrections officer, Victor Lashley’s career often immersed him in life-threatening situations, putting his self-defense skills to the test outside the safe confines of a gym. To empower others with the ability to fight back while getting fit, he now teaches myriad forms of martial arts at ICAT Triple Threat Training Center. He trains patrons in MMA grappling, Kali, and his own method Defensive Concepts, which blends kicking and close-range striking techniques from muay thai, Kali, and boxing into a fast-paced striking art that earned Lashley a state certification as a Defensive Tactics Instructor. With the aid of his fellow instructors, he helms boot-camp classes and one-on-one personal-training sessions that devour calories. Nala—a boxer-breed pooch—serves as the gym's mascot, security guard, and head instructor of drool-based self-defense techniques.
It's been more than 50 years since Staten Island Judo Jujitsu Dojo started teaching martial arts. Armed with these five decades of experience and a staff of black belts with extensive backgrounds in mixed martial arts, judo, and grappling competitions, the dojo is well-equipped to train students in the arts of self-defense and discipline.
Students can enroll in classes to train for competitions, but the basic classroom atmosphere is strictly noncompetitive and supportive, regardless of participants' age, level of experience, or crime-fighting alter ego. Boot-camp classes are also available.
H. W. Bressaw has been teaching karate, specifically as a prominent instructor of Kimura Shukokai, since 1966. That's nearly half a century of correcting stances, building self-confidence, and demonstrating effective self-defense techniques. His unique style stresses technical aspects of physical techniques, which helps make it possible for a person of any size, age, or gender to defend themselves. Today, he leads a highly experienced team of instructors trained to carry forth the mission he started so long ago. H. W. Bressaw and his team specialize in a timeless art known as kata, which builds karate skills while quieting the mind. They also teach a sparring technique known as kumite to their most adventurous students, who learn respect and attention to detail through the ancient art.
Transformation Fitness Studio combines the benefits of personal training with the convenience of at-home workouts. In addition to offering their clients webcam workouts led by certified personal trainers, the studio also boasts a new facility where participants can work out at their own pace. In addition, visiting the facility in person gives people a good reason to leave the house in sweatpants, second only to impersonating Rocky Balboa.
Black Belt Institute hosts a variety of fitness and martial-arts classes for students of all ages. Children's classes, which start at age 4, include karate, tae kwon do, and kung fu, and emphasize self-esteem and confidence. Adult classes include yoga, tai chi, and cardio kickboxing, and work to reduce stress and build positive self-image while bolstering self-defense.