As a 4th-degree black belt, Alexander "Soca" Freitas’s fighting resumé is a formidable one. He has won multiple competitions - including the highly prestigious ADCC Championship, where he was also named "Most Technical Fighter" - and is a five-time Brazilian National Jiu-Jitsu Championship winner. He earned his black belt under Carlos Gracie Jr., the son of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu’s founder, and he spent 25 years mastering the grappling art at the Gracie Barra main academy. Since becoming a teacher himself, Soca has awarded black belts to 24 of his students. However, he doesn't try to force any of his protégés into following his footsteps—instead of matching his impressive accolades with an intimidating attitude, Soca welcomes students of all ages, builds, and abilities to his gym.
Soca leads classes in both beginning and advanced Brazilian Jiu Jitsu techniques. The martial-arts discipline depends on leverage and holds rather than weapons to subdue opponents, and he demonstrates these maneuvers during practice drills. Students progress through the curriculum by testing to receive successive belts rather than by wrestling a written exam to the ground. Soca ultimately leaves their goals up to them, whether they hope to perfect their self-defense moves, compete in MMA tournaments, or simply engage in healthy exercise. Aside from standard Brazilian Jiu Jitsu lessons, the gym also hosts private classes, children's classes, and strength-and-conditioning sessions, led by co-owner Samantha Freitas.
Tiger Schulmann's youth training programs teach youngsters focus, discipline, confidence, and self-defense against unruly pickle jars. Tiger Schulmann, the man and legend, draws on his undefeated experience of winning more than 100 competitions to create a comprehensive martial-arts style that educates adolescents on how to fuse body and mind for a healthy, assertive lifestyle. The professional instructors have all trained with Schulmann and teach classes in a safe, all-inclusive environment. This deal is valid for all Tiger Schulmann MMA locations in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, and Florida.
Barbara Brenseke—a licensed fitness instructor for more than 20 years and a certified Olympic weightlifting sports-performance coach—puts her experience as a competitor in Olympic distance triathlons, marathons, and USTA tennis leagues to use by showing others how to prevent injuries and achieve the sharpest competitive edge possible. Her semiprivate training center constantly maintains a 3:1 client-to-coach ratio, allowing her and her team of impassioned instructors to show clients personalized attention as they prepare them for athletic competitions or guide them toward a lifestyle of health and wellness.
Staffers teach students how to perform optimally, using strength and power in athletic disciplines that range from lacrosse to baseball. They can also help clients sculpt their bodies for non-sports-related hobbies, such as golfing, biking, or building life-size model-train sets. Additionally, they can show students how to chisel away excess poundage with individualized weight, cardio, and nutritional programs.
The certified personal trainers at Steel Fitness help clients achieve their health and fitness goals. Personal-training sessions incorporate elements of CrossFit combined with state-of-the-art equipment. After their workout, clients can cool off at the beverage center and enjoy eucalyptus towel service. See the gym's FAQ page for more information.
The more than a dozen brick-and-mortar locations that make up Ultimate Champions Taekwondo Association share not only a style of combat, but a teaching philosophy as well. Tracing the lineage of their combative art back to Grandmaster Sang K. Oh, the instructors adhere to his teachings, exemplified by the quote, "The person who can defeat others with flashy techniques but is without love toward his fellow man will in the end defeat himself." Students use the physical empowerment of mastering jumps, kicks, and weapons to arm themselves with discipline, confidence, concentration, self-respect, and courtesy for others.
Outside of the classroom, the organization reaches out to the tri-state community with ample demonstrations of some of their most exciting techniques. Practitioners soar skyward in flying kicks or fill the air with the whirring blows of nunchakus, bos, and kamas. Fists slam through boards, balloons, and bricks to demonstrate the striking power of tae kwon do and the structural flaws in the Three Little Pigs' panic room.
With personal training, sports nutrition, and even sports hypnotism certifications tucked under his weightlifting belt, Tony DiCostanzo brings more to DreamBodies than a booming voice and admirable biceps. The dedicated fitness coach leads boot campers and personal-training clients through calorie-burning workouts, supplemented with diet tips and what he calls "mind-motivational conditioning," which makes eating healthy an automatic response, rather than a chore. Unlike other training programs, Tony’s DreamBodies also offers an online edition, complete with a consultation over the phone, continuous coaching via e-mail, and custom at-home workouts that forge lasting results and show house pets who's boss.