Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Judo and Japanese Jiu Jitsu Black Belt, IBJJF World Senior Jiu Jitsu Champion
Julio has been involved in health and fitness for twenty years as a competitor, trainer and journalist. He won a national bodybuilding title at the age of nineteen and shortly afterwards, began training in Judo and Japanese Jiu Jitsu under 7th dan and Masters World Champion Jack Krystek. At this time, Mr. Rivera also began boxing under the guidance of NYPD boxing team coach and professional trainer David Siev.
Sensei Julio began competing in Judo early in his training, placing well at several local competitions, including the Northeastern, Starrett Cup and Liberty Bell. While still a green belt, he began to help teach classes at the dojo, sparking a passion for sharing knowledge and helping him develop his style of instruction.
After six years of training, Mr. Rivera earned his blackbelt in Jiu Jitsu Modern Style, a form of the Japanese art developed by Sensei Jack and his brother Albert, which includes throws, joint locks and chokes as well as some limited striking techniques. Two months later he was awarded his Judo black belt.
During this time, Sensei Jack, one of a handful of black belts in HAGANAH, began teaching his students this no nonsense Israeli Self Defense style. Because the curriculum is completed in just four months before being repeated, Sensei Julio became quite proficient in three years, and began fusing the techniques with his Judo and Jiu Jitsu training for self defense purposes.
Sensei Julio then became head instructor and manager of Premier Martial Arts in Midtown Manhattan, and began training in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu at Renzo Gracie Academy, earning his blue belt under Gregor Gracie. He trained briefly under Eduardo Santos of Lotus Club before becoming manager as well as Judo, kickboxing and self defense instructor for World BJJ and MMA champion Vitor Shaolin Ribeiro at his New York City academy.
In January of 2012, Sensei Julio received his Nidan (2nd degree black belt) in Judo from Sensei Jack Krystek. In October of the same year, Sensei Julio won the World Brazilian Jiu Jitsu title in the Senior 1 Brown Belt division, the first ever winner at the inaugural event. In December of 2014, he was awarded the black belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu by Vitor Shaolin Ribeiro.
Sensei Julio has trained students who are agents and officers from the NYPD, Customs and Border Patrol, Secret Service and private security agencies. He has also helped train and corner MMA fighters.
Sensei Julio continues to train Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and MMA with Shaolin and Bellator Champion Marcos "Loro" Galvao. Sensei Julio has also trained MMA with UFC World Champion Anderson Silva as well as Muay Thai with Aziz Nabih at the renowned Sitan Academy.
A graduate of New York University's print journalism program, Sensei Julio has contributed articles on health, fitness and martial arts to publications such as Grappling, Oxygen, Physical, Muscle and Fitness, Advantig Health and Sport and the Association of Professional Martial Artists, among others.
He has appeared as an expert on fitness or martial arts on PBS, MTV, The Channel 11 news, National Geographic, MSNBC, GeoBeats and ExpertVillage.com. As the former co-host of the national PBS teen magazine show "In The Mix", Julio reported on issues important to young adults, including a story on gun violence which won a local Emmy for community service. He has been certified as a coach by USA Judo and as a personal trainer by the International Fitness Association.
BJJ evolved from Kodokan Judo and uses leverage, positioning and submissions to defeat an opponent on the ground. Omni's Jiu Jitsu students also learn Judo throwing techniques which set them apart from other BJJ practitioners. Omni Martial Arts is the only school in Queens that is a member of the Vitor Shaolin Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Association, and our BJJ program is under direct supervision of Professor Shaolin, a three time world champion. We also offer no Gi (uniform) BJJ classes.
Kids’ Program: Our kids program was developed in conjunction with a licensed children’s therapist to ensure that our students are champions on and off the mat. Omni teaches the throws and grappling of Judo and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and kickboxing with an emphasis on discipline, focus and respect. Children will learn how to fall, roll, throw, punch, kick and grapple in a safe and nurturing environment. Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and Judo students wear a gi (traditional uniform) and will earn colored belts through in-school tournaments and outside competitions to help measure progress and encourage them to be their best. Junior kickboxing students (8-13yrs) wear an Omni tee-shirt and gi pants or shorts and will earn colored arm bands as they advance in skill level.
While all of Omni's programs, whether Judo, BJJ or kickboxing, are first and foremost meant for self protection, in reality, rules go out the window on the street. Omni Self-Defense workshops run in 3 week blocks every several months and combine Japanese and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and Israeli street self-defense techniques with hard hitting striking and jaw dropping conditioning to bring you the ultimate street survival course! No fancy techniques that take a lifetime to perfect, just simple movements to make sure you feel great and stay safe. We also offer private and semi-private self-defense classes.
Omni Martial Arts is proud to have been rated as one of the top Self-Defense schools in New York City! Call (718) 726-0101 or email us today to schedule a private self-defense class, or to find out about our workshops.
Omni Martial Arts has always been unique because of the presence of a large number of female athletes who train and compete side by side with our male students.
Martial Arts are designed to allow the weak to defeat the strong. Omni’s Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and Judo program offers a safe way for women who are interested in learning how to protect themselves while getting fit, leading to increased self-confidence and a valuable set of skills that last a lifetime.
Judo is a sport that uses throws, ground fighting and submissions based on leverage and body positioning. It was developed in the late 1800's by Professor Jigoro Kano, a Japanese scholar and Jiu Jitsu practitioner who sought to bring together techniques from several different schools of the art. Professor Kano envisioned Judo (or Kano Jiu Jitsu, as it was once known) as being more than a martial art. To him, Judo was a way of life. Kano believed Judo could teach young people focus, discipline and honor while allowing the physically weaker person to prevail in combat through technique over strength.
At Omni Martial Arts, Queens, NY, we hold true to Professor Kano's vision, while adding the modern advantage of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu to traditional Judo. Men and women who train Judo at Omni will learn the important transitions from take down to ground fighting.
Kickboxing makes getting in shape fun and exciting. Our kickboxing program for men and women isn't just a cardio class where you stand and hit a bag for an hour. The class focuses on punches, kicks, knees, elbows, footwork and defense from Muay Thai, Western boxing and American kickboxing. Students work with partners and learn to use techniques against actual opponents. We know that most of our students are here to get in shape as quickly and effectively as possible, so that's our main goal. Sparring is optional.
Conveniently located in Astoria, Queens our kickboxing class is a tough workout that will leave you feeling empowered and confident, making it the most well rounded program of its kind.
Omni Martial Arts Kids Hybrid Rules Jiu Jitsu tournament: Saturday, October 15.
We had a great day of competition, with Bronx Jiu Jitsu sending competitors to our academy to participate. We saw some excellent throws and submissions!
Free Community Self Defense Seminar For Adults and Kids: Saturday, October 22nd. Street self defense techniques to keep the whole family safe this Halloween.
Amazing turnout for our self defense seminar. Everyone had lots of fun and learned simple techniques anyone can use.
Halloween: Kids come to class in costume! We'll be playing fun games and winning candy!
Competition News: Our kids Jiu Jitsu team took second at the Big Apple BJJ tournament after winning a ton of gold, silver and bronze medals. Amazing performances by our little warriors.
A little competition isn’t just a good thing, it’s a GREAT thing.
It promotes growth.
It forces us to be more creative.
It teaches us.
It promotes taking chances and trying something new.
It makes us more goal oriented.
Competition prepares us for the real world.
It is Natural.
It Makes Life More Entertaining.
Here at Omni Martial Arts, we acknowledge that putting yourself out there takes great courage. We encourage, support, empower and work with our students when the opportunity to compete presents itself.
Mario Hernandez: Assistant instructor, Brazilian JiuJitsu Brown Belt, Amateur MMA Champion
Mario Hernandez is a brown belt in BJJ under Professor Vitor Shaolin and Sensei Julio Rivera. He is an active competitor in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and an amateur MMA Champion Under the Dead Serious fight promotion, having trained under Bellator MMA standout Marcos Loro Galvao. Mario has been training since 2009 in various martial arts, (BJJ, Kickboxing, Boxing). In 2013, Mario scored his first MMA victory as well as a silver medal at the Big Apple BJJ tournament. He gained experience as a camp counselor and now assists with teaching children and adults at Omni. December 10 2016 Mario became the 140 pound Champion by TKO in the Second round. Congrats Coach Mario we are proud of you!
Rafael Santana: Assistant Instructor, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Brown Belt, Judo Brown Belt
Rafael earned a Masters in Criminal Justice from John Jay. He began training in Judo and BJJ at Omni shortly after. He has earned medals at several competitions, including the IBJJF Boston Open, New York International Judo Cup, Big Apple BJJ tournament, LI Pride and Tech Judo. He uses his six years of teaching experience from City University to assist with childrens' and adult classes at Omni.
Alvaro Tautiva is a Brown belt in both Judo and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu under Sensei Julio Rivera. Before joining the Omni family in 2010, Alvaro trained in Muay Thai and was a certified trainer with N.A.S.M. An active competitor in the BJJ scene, Alvaro has competed and medaled in several tournaments in the United States, ranging from New York, Boston, Miami and Las Vegas. In 2015, as a Purple belt, Alvaro was runner up in the IBJJF Masters Worlds championship and soon after took 1st place in the no gi Pan-Ams championship. In 2016 Coach Alvaro earned silver medals in both his division and the absolute of the no gi Pan as a brown belt. As an assistant instructor, Alvaro implements his background in speech and language pathology, from LaGCC and Brooklyn College, to help with the instruction of the children's programs at the school.
> IBJJF American Nationals No Gi 2016: Brown Belt Master 1 Feather Champion
>IBJJF American Nationals No Gi 2016: Brown Belt Master 1 Absolute 3rd Place
>PAN Jiu Jitsu No G IBJJF Championship 2016: Brown Belt Master 1 and Absolute, 2nd place
> IBJJF American Nationals Gi 2016: Brown Belt Master 1 Feather 2nd Place
> Pan Jiu Jitsu No Gi IBJJF Championship 2015: Purple Belt Master 1 Feather Champion
> World Master Jiu Jitsu IBJJF Championships 2015: Purple Belt Master 1 Second Place
> New York Summer International IBJJF Open 2015: Purple Master 1 Second Place
> Big Apple Open 2015: Purple Belt Adult Feather Champion
> Good Fight 2013 Summer Classic: Purple Belt Adult Light Champion
> Good Fight 2012 Winter Classic: Blue Adult Feather Gi/No Gi Champion/Open Weight Gi Champ
> Long Island Pride XVI: Blue Open Weight No Gi Champion
> Boston IBJJF International Open 2012: Blue Belt Feather Third Place
Dr. Maria Pagan-Rivera Ph.D., L.C.S.W., Co-Founder, Omni Kids/Children's Program Consultant
Dr. Maria Pagan-Rivera Ph.D., L.C.S.W. Co-Founder of the Omni Martial Arts children’s program. Her expertise in child development helped shape Omni Kids' curriculum into one that emphasizes the cultivation of social and inter-personal skills. She completed her PhD in Clinical Social Work at New York University. Dr. Pagan-Rivera was a school social worker at the NYC Department of Education for 9 years where she provided counseling to children with disabilities and their families. Dr. Pagan-Rivera worked as a consultant and evaluator for the NYC Early Intervention Program where she evaluated children for developmental delays, speech delays, gross motor delays and social-emotional problems. She is currently a Professor of Social Work at BMCC and has taught at NYU.