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Founder - Professor Chris Matakas

Professor Chris Matakas founded the Matakas Jiu Jitsu Academy in 2017. He is a 2nd degree black belt under Ricardo Almeida, Performance Coach to business owners and community leaders, and is a 15x author.

He was successful in competition winning several local tournaments, competing in the IBJJF World Championships, and posting an undefeated amateur MMA record. Professor Chris has created a global shift in Jiu Jitsu culture, specifically on using Jiu Jitsu as a vehicle for personal development, through his best-selling books.

Chris founded this academy to teach kids and adults self-defense using world-class Jiu Jitsu, including partnering with local law enforcement at the Bordentown Township Police Department to provide defensive tactics for the officers.

General Manager - Coach Dan McCool

Coach Dan McCool is the General Manager and an Instructor of all age groups. He is a Jiu Jitsu Brown Belt, Air Force Security Forces Veteran, and current Lieutenant in the Federal Prison System.

He started training in 2018 at the age of forty after having spent some time watching his daughters excel in their respective journeys. In his first year of training, Jiu Jitsu helped Coach Dan lose 60 pounds, obtained focus, crush numerous goals, and break bad habits.

“I started training after being a parent on the sideline. I contemplated my age, previous injuries, money, and my schedule to realize, they were just easy excuses to not endure the personal struggle in finding myself this late in life. One day I made the final decision to give it a try after my daughter gave me the final push. I took my first class, and I could not believe how hard it was for me. It was then, along with a picture of me taken after class, that I realized I have some serious choices to make. I wanted to be so much more, and I wanted to be the person I thought I was. That began then next day.

I teach and coach as my way of giving back to all of those that have helped me along my journey. There really is nothing more rewarding than seeing others come into the Academy seeking a change themselves and guiding them to that change. We get opportunity to be a part of a community that takes humans of all walks of life, shapes, and struggles and work together to find the best version of ourselves.”

Membership Manager/Lead Tykes Instructor
Coach Emma Stahl

"I started training in 2021 after I attended a women’s self-defense series that the academy was offering. I was hooked instantaneously. Being that this was the summer, and I was a fresh college graduate (for the second time), I quickly began to eat, sleep, and breathe jiu jitsu. I found myself in the academy well before and after my class started and end just watching the other classes.

From there, I began assisting the Tiny Tyke Program (3.5-5 year olds). I loved helping coach them so much, I built it into my schedule right away even though it was supposed to be a “whenever you’re free and want to hop on” type of gig. I made sure that I was free by planning around their class schedule. They bring such a tremendous presence to the academy, it’s hard not to smile when you see them on the mat. I took over their Saturday class as soon as my coaches felt I earned it and am now the Lead Tiny Tykes Instructor.

It wasn’t hard to notice that I was one of maybe a handful of girls in the adult program and I wanted that to change. Working with Professor Chris, I was able to develop Power in Pink, our very own Women’s Program. Since then, every time you walk into any class my girls are taking over the mats! My goal is to have an equal representation of men and women in our academy developing the skills of what is typically a male-dominated sport. As I continue to dive into self-defense both on and off the mat, my drive to make self-defense classes accessible to women has increased tenfold. There is nothing I want more than women being able to go wherever they want in life knowing they can defend themselves if someone tries to subdue them.

My Top 3 Proudest Moments At The Academy:

1. Conducting my first Power in Pink Seminar

2. Earning my Black Gi

3. Tapping my dad for the first time hahaha AMERICANAS ALL DAY"

Head Instructor - Coach Jim O'Boyle

Coach Jim is a Brown Belt under Professor Chris Matakas and is the head instructor of the academy.

"My experience in grappling started in high school when I was a wrestler. It wasn't until after high school I started Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and quickly fell in love with the art. I was drawn to the challenge of learning a new skill and the sense of community that comes with training with others.

I've been fortunate to have had some great instructors over the years, and I'm grateful for the knowledge and experience they've shared with me. I'm also grateful for the opportunity to pass on what I've learned to others.

As the head instructor at Matakas BJJ, I'm committed to being the guide for our students and providing them with a safe and supportive environment where they can learn and grow. I believe that Brazilian Jiu Jitsu can be a life-changing art, and I'm excited that I get to share it with others."

Lead Youth Instructor - Adam Edwards

Coach Adam Edwards is a Purple Belt under Professor Chris Matakas and is the Lead Youth Instructor along with assisting with the Tiny Tykes Program.

"I have been training for 3 years, first starting in August of 2020. The reason I teach is because it is important to teach our youth how to not only defend themselves, but to help them become wonderful members of the communities belong to. It is very rewarding teaching our youth students how to deal with bullies, but it is even more rewarding having an impact on them as people. To form the relationships, give advice, and help build their confidence anyway I can, makes every minute on the mat with them worth it.

Outside of the academy I work as a Police Officer. I have the honor of working with our youth every day in our school district. I have the pleasure of seeing some of our academy students every single day in the school forming those relationships, then being able to see and teach them at night. Being able to see the students outside of the academy, in school, and watching them flourish brings a smile to my face. Outside of work I like to stay active in the gym, cook, and spend time with my family.

I love jiu jitsu because of the community. I learn skills every day to help protect myself and family, and I get to do it with people from all walks of life. No matter what is going on off the mat, what job you do, the minute you step on the mat together that all goes away. Everyone wants to learn, everyone wants to grow, everyone wants to choke one another. It is great. The relationships that form through these common goals are some of the strongest I have in my life now, and I owe that to BJJ."

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What Clients Say About Us

Matakas BJJ has been an amazing experience for my daughter. I can't say enough about this family-oriented academy and their dedicated coaches. If want your child to learn to defend themselves, go see for yourself and sit in on a class.



Mother of 8 year old in our Youth Program

Jane Doe

Matakas Jiu Jitsu is world class. I have traveled around and visited many Jiu Jitsu academies and MBJJ is by far the best in my opinion. Phenomenal teaching, clean facilities, a welcoming community and a friendly goal-oriented culture. MBJJ is great for beginners and all skill levels. I highly recommend visiting.



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2043 Rt 130, Florence NJ 08016

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(609) 473-3768

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