Martial Arts Instructors

Instructor Renato Tavares

Renato Tavares 5 Degree BJJ Black Belt

Renato Tavares moved to Rio de Janeiro and started training under Carlson Gracie, receiving his brown and black (in 1995) belts from the BJJ legend. After moving to the US in He  took advantage of the booming MMA scene in the US and started his career in the popular sport, fighting at the World Extreme Fighting 12 in Ohio.

Renato has been instructing students in BJJ and Grappling from a wide variety of backgrounds including FBI Agents, Military, Police Officers and Athletes.

Renato is a professional MMA fighter and is active on the grappling circuit. He has many titles: International Champion, Pan American Champion, and many State Championships. Renato is regarded by many as one of the best BJJ practitioners as well as a professor.

Renato has formed several black belts in the USA but he has not lost his competitive edge, having competed in 16 events in 2009, winning 13 of those. He recently competed in the Worlds and won gold.

Legacy Instructor

Melissa Bentley BJJ Black Belt 

Bentley bronze

Melissa Bentley started training BJJ in 2010 and has been training and competing for 6 years. She is a multiple World and Pan American champion and has won or placed in many other tournaments.

Melissa received her black belt December 2015 and is Renato Tavares’ first female black belt.

Her dedication to jiu jitsu will remain as she is constantly learning to be a better student, instructor and person.

Hemerson Ricardo Navarro

 At the age of seven, under the influence of his father, the boy from Paraguaçu Paulista (SP) entered judo.  “The idea of  Joseph (my father) was to calm me down. Thank you every day for having encouraged you to practice a fighting style.

Today, fighting is my way of life. Navarro shows his achievements:  On the mat, Navarro displays his main achievements: World Cup, Mercosur, Pan American and Brazilian

 Navarro grew up and reached the black judo belt. At the same time, he trained boxing, capoeira and met jiu-jitsu, a sport that changed his destiny.

At age 21 he decided to dedicate himself to the sport and today, he is a black belt and champion of everything in the soft art, as the jiu-jitsu style is known.

“Life taught me to persevere and never give up. I managed to win the World Cup twice, the Brazilian in five opportunities and international championships like Mercosur and Panamericano other times. Navarro champion

This year, the champion increased his gallery of titles by winning for the second time the Mercosur Cup (in the featherweight category), which occurred in Argentina, and was in 2nd in the free category. He secured second place in the Brazilian podium and was a World Champion in Rio de Janeiro.

Even with so many achievements, for him, winning is not everything. As a coach, he teaches that discipline is an indispensable attribute. – I live on the mat. I live the fight. I live the sport. Everything in the right measure.