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Bay Area Martial Arts Podcast

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Learning Krav Maga as an Adult, with David Breslauer

Today, Wade has an interesting interview with David Breslauer, one of three co-founders of Bolt Threads — a company that has mastered the production of replicating spiders’ silk for large-scale production of fabrics and garments. Other than running his successful company, David also trains in Krav Maga. And interestingly enough, he only recently began training as an adult and is just coming up on 2 years now! In this episode, David explains the “non-traditional” reasons as to why he...


The EDGE Training Center’s Vernie Inocencio on All Things BJJ

Today, Wade drives out to Hayward, California, to visit the EDGE Training Center. There, he speaks with Vernie Inocencio, one of the founders of the EDGE Training Center and a black belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Originally starting by getting into kickboxing fairly casually, Vernie eventually branched out into BJJ, which became his tried and true passion. Now, running the school, EDGE Training Center for the last five years or so, he runs several successful programs from kickboxing to BJJ...


Choosing the Path of Becoming an Instructor in Jiu Jitsu with Tryfon Stathopoulos

In today’s episode, Wade has a fantastic conversation with Tryfon Stathopoulos of North Bay Jiu Jitsu. This episode touches on the theme of choices and choosing what matters the most to you as a person. Tryfon tells the story of how he ultimately chose the path of training in Jiu Jitsu — then, later on — choosing the path to become an instructor and open up his own school. Tryfon is a black belt in Gracie Jiu Jitsu, under the 4th-degree black belt, Professor Eduardo Rocha; a 3rd-degree...


Damon Evans on the World of Jeet Kune Do

In this week’s episode, Wade was up in Petaluma, California, with his guest, Damon Evans of Jeet Kune Do Sciences. Damon is a martial artist with a capital M, focusing on the applicability of self-defense vs. any sport. Jeet Kune Do, the martial art Damon practices and teaches, is a very unique martial art. It was created by Bruce Lee and has now grown into several different aspects (which Damon further explains this episode!) When Damon was growing up, his dad was a master in boxing but...


The Black Belt that Trains with a White Belt Mentality, Ramin Ettehad

In this episode, Wade interviews Ramin Ettehad, co-founder of Oomnitza, an enterprise software company, and a black belt in Brazilian-Jiu Jitsu. Although he’s a black belt, he has a true white belt mentality — training with a variety of camps, continuing to train while traveling, and practicing wherever and whenever he can. Ramin has been integrating martial arts into his life from a very early age and was even throwing punches and kicks in the air before he knew what martial arts were!...


How Martial Arts Impacts Your Life Outside the Dojo with Mike Valentine

Many of Wade’s interviewees have said that the moment they saw a Bruce Lee movie, it inspired them to go down the path to become a martial artist — and his guest today is no exception. However, when Wade asked him, “Where would martial arts in the U.S. be without the impact of Bruce Lee?” you might want to stay tuned to hear his answer. Mike Valentine is the founder and co-owner of Practical Martial Arts in Corte Madera, CA. Practical Martial Arts (or PMA for short) is a mixed martial...


Michael Regnier Eats, Breathes, and Sleeps Martial Arts — Literally

Michael Regnier eats, breathes, and sleeps martial arts — literally. When he went on to become a Muay Thai instructor he ended up living at the studio, and that studio was attached to a Thai restaurant and club. So not only did he sleep at the studio, but he ate Thai food almost every day and even worked at the club as a bouncer. Michael had a professional fight career of about eight fights, and then started his own martial arts studio in Oakland called Pacific Ring Sports. In this...


Building an Inclusive Community at the Quantum Dojo, with Master Rachael Evans

What do you get when you cross a Hell’s Angel with a marine and a musician? Master Rachael Evans of course. Master Rachael Evans runs the nonprofit martial arts school, Quantum Dojo, in San Francisco, California. And in this episode, she shares her unique start in how she got into the martial arts; how she opened up her school, Quantum; and provides information on the programs and classes they provide, from adults to children. Rachael really highlights the idea that the martial arts are...


The Journey of a Capoeira Practitioner with Armando Ibarra

If you’re anything like Wade, you’ve heard of Capoeira — but if you’re honest, you probably don’t know a ton. Wade’s guest, Armando Ibarra, will help you get that much more familiar with all things Capoeira in today’s episode. He talks about the history of it, what makes it so unique, as well as his own journey in it from 13 years old to professional practitioner. Armando teaches Capoeira in San Francisco and has a long history of martial arts, it having been instilled in him from a young...


The Perfect Blend of Business and Martial Arts with Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Practitioner, James Kilpatrick

Today Wade interviews James Kilpatrick. James is a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu practitioner and has a commercial real estate business in San Francisco. James perfectly represents the blending of martial arts and business by taking the same approach with both. He’s always open to trying new tactics and new ways of doing business — the same goes for his training in BJJ. James has practiced in the martial arts since an early age. In college, he boxed and wrestled but it was there that he discovered...


Life of a Lawyer and Black Belt in Krav Maga with Raphael Gutierrez

Today Wade has a fun interview with his good friend, Raphael Gutierrez. Raphael is a lawyer on Uber’s legal team, leading the trademarks group, and has a black belt in Krav Maga. Raphael has a full life, from a day job of supporting the Uber trademark globally — whether that’s overseeing disputes, to managing licensing and domains — to balance his family life, and training in Krav Maga. This episode, Raphael talks about his first introduction into martial arts, his journey to earning his...


Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu’s Dirty Dozen, David Meyer

If you have any interest in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and the history behind it you’re going to love today’s interview on The Bay Area Martial Arts Podcast. Wade interviews one of the original BJJ “Dirty Dozen”: David Meyer. He was one of the first twelve people to get their BJJ black belt outside of Brazil. Starting back in the ‘90s, he has a tremendous history from the more traditional side of Jiu-Jitsu to Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. He’s a major advocate for BJJ, the vegan lifestyle, and animal rights...


Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Instructor and Tech Entrepreneur, Danny Marks

If you do a martial art and you enjoy watching the UFC, you may have pondered what it would be like to be in a professional fight. As Wade says though, if you’re anywhere around 155 lbs and you meet Danny Marks, you might have a second thought on that idea. Danny is a seven-time professional fighter, six wins, one loss. He’s a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Instructor and even has a small tech project on the side. Danny is incredibly humble with an interesting background and has many interesting...


The Martial Arts Playground: Soja Mind/Body

Wade’s guest today is Peter Ajemian, of Soja Mind/Body — a physical fitness studio in Berkeley, California. The Soja studio is really more of a “playground” in martial arts — you don’t learn a certain style, but instead, they offer a variety of courses ranging from traditional self-defense to yoga and Tai Chi. They also offer classes to a range of ages; adults, children, and seniors. The combination of elements makes for a very unique environment — very different from your traditional...


Mother’s Day Special with Whitney Arnautou, Mother of Three and Kenpo Black Belt

In light of the recent Mother's Day celebration, Wade appropriately interviews a tough mother of three. Whitney is a stay at home mom who decided that she needed something that was going to engage her physically and mentally — and tennis just wasn’t going to cut it. In 2005, after her youngest child went off to Kindergarten, she decided to truly put this plan into action and entered a nearby martial arts studio. Since then, she’s earned her black belt in Kenpo Karate. Something incredibly...


Running an Aikido Studio and IT Company with Rob Schenk

Most — if not all — martial artists appreciate the community in which they study. Wade Pitt’s guest today, Rob Schenk, enjoyed it so much that when the head instructor decided to potentially shut down the studio he was studying at (due to their age), he stepped up — not only as an instructor — but to run the studio. At the time, Rob was already running his own business in IT services but managed to juggle both his love for Aikido and the growth of his company. Rob first got serious about...


Rory Miller: Versatile Martial Artist, Corrections Officer, and Prolific Writer

“I get paid (and paid well) to go into a situation, usually alone and usually outnumbered by sixty or more criminals, and maintain order. I prevent them from preying on each other or attacking officers. That’s the job. Now, since I don’t fight every day or even every week (anymore — I’m a sergeant now, one step behind the front line) most of the minutes and hour of the day are pretty easy, far too easy for what they are paying me. But every once in a while on a really, really ugly night, I...


How Distilled Lessons in Martial Arts Training Corresponds in Your Personal and Professional Life, with 5th Degree Black Belt in Danzan Ryu Jujitsu, Pete St. Pierre

Wade’s guest today really resonates with the idea of how distilled lessons in the martial arts correspond with personal and professional lives. Pete St. Pierre is the Senior Product Manager for the Internet of Things (IoT) Services Portfolio at Cisco Systems, here in Santa Clara, CA. He also sits on The American Judo and Jujitsu Federation as the Operations Committee Chair. Pete is extremely methodical — not only in his martial arts training — but in his personal and professional life. He...


Balancing Family, Business, and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu with Arvind Gupta, MMA Fighter and Venture Capitalist

Wade’s guest on today’s Bay Area Martial Arts Podcast is venture capitalist and MMA fighter, Arvind Gupta. During the evening and weekends, you can find Arvind mountain climbing, BASE Jumping, and practicing his skills in MMA or BJJ — but during the day he risks money as a venture capitalist and works as the managing director at the company he founded, Indie Bio, investing in biotech and life science companies that are looking to scale. In this conversation with Arvind they discuss some...


(Part B) Kris Wilder: Author, Black Belt, Head Instructor, and Strategic Life Coach

This episode, Wade continues his interview with Kris Wilder. This is the second half of a two-part interview. When Wade Pitts first began teaching as a self-defense instructor, one of the first books he read on the topic was The Little Black Book of Violence: What Every Young Man Needs to Know About Fighting, by Kris Wilder and Lawrence Kane. The premise of the book was very clear: always avoid an altercation if possible; avoid violence. Today, he interviews one of the authors of the...