The Black Belt’s Journey

Our Black Belt program is an integrated, interdisciplinary training regimen designed to provide the student with a well-rounded foundation of skill and knowledge. For those students who wish to undertake the journey, the Prevail Black Belt represents a unique standard of accomplishment: Designed to offer a serious challenge to earn a high quality degree. Our Black Belt Program trains highly competent martial artists who are fluent in a broad range of both physical techniques and mental skills. This program is recommended for students who are interested in making a commitment to a serious process of physical, mental, and spiritual growth and discovery.

In that spirit, our Black Belt program is structured in the same way as that of a University Bachelor’s degree: Rather than receiving narrow, specialized training in a single art form, the student receives training in a broad range of arts and functional skills, laying a solid foundation for the Black Belt to understand the totality of the Martial Arts; not just the intricacy of a single art. The standards within this curriculum are among the highest available in the country, and are designed to be fun and challenging, while also attainable and flexible. This unique approach incorporates cutting-edge training with a deep knowledge of tradition and philosophy, and emphasizes intelligence and discipline in the pursuit of high standards and long-term goals.

hissho-ryu kempo-jujitsu

“Hisshou” is a Japanese concept intrinsic to the martial arts. Like many Japanese Kanji , its meaning embodies a complex concept that is not directly translatable to English and has many different (and equally valid) interpretations. Literally translated, it means “Certain Victory” or “Inevitable Victory”, and refers to a situation where even though competition may still be ongoing, one side’s victory is already assured. One way to think of Hisshou is as “Checkmate”; a set of conditions under which one’s victory cannot be prevented. Another contextual meaning of Hisshou is as “Prevail”; describing the mindset of someone who is utterly determined to succeed. Hisshou is used by Master Leigh Rossi as the Kanji for his system, which he calls the “Checkmate” JuJitsu system. When I founded Prevail, I adopted Hisshou as the symbol for “Prevail” in honor of Sensei Rossi, and in recognition of a constant striving for excellence in the martial arts that our Academy represents and fosters.

After 30 years of accumulated training and teaching, the time came to codify the body of knowledge and styles of training that we use at Prevail into a complete system. Our Integrated Arts Program is an integrated, interdisciplinary, Mixed Martial Arts approach that combines Kickboxing (Boxing, Muay Thai, Kickbxoing, Savate) with Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, JuJitsu, Reality Based Self Defense, Meditation, and the study of history & philosophy to produce mindful, well-rounded martial artists who are competent and educated at all ranges of the martial disciplines. I decided to name this integrated arts approach “Hissou-Ryu Kempo JuJitsu” in honor of my teachers. In August of 2016, a board of 9 senior masters comprised of my teachers and mentors (Masters Terry Dow, Leigh Rossi, Gino Traballano, Shawn Flannagan, Robb Buckland, Rick Alford, Paul Castagno, Professor J.J. Doyle, and Sensei Shelby Young) promoted me to 4th Degree Black Belt and certified their recognition and approval of the Prevail System of Hisshou-Ryu Kenpo-JuJitsu. In 2017, Prevail became a certified member academy of JuJitsu America, the United States’ oldest JuJitsu Organization.

our curriculum

Our curriculum is centered in a teaching paradigm we call the “8 Gates of the Martial Arts”, which form a complete training matrix for developing strong martial artists. This program uses a Comparative Approach to training that emphasizes a broad base of knowledge and skill, and the creative ability to adapt to situations quickly and effectively. This matrix includes Striking (Muay Thai, Savate, Kickboxing), Grappling (Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu), Self-Defense (Jujitsu, RBSD, Combatives), Meditation, and Academic training in the History, Philosophy, and Ethical teachings of the world’s various martial traditions.

  • diet & nutrition

    This is the foundation of our physical and mental fitness.

  • strength & conditioning

    Ensuring that our bodies are functionally strong and cardiovascularly fit.

  • flexibility & balance

    Strength and Fitness must be tempered with mental and physical flexibility and coordination.

  • techniques & combinations

    We focus our strong, flexibile, fit, bodies and minds on developing skill and ability.

  • mental training

    Good technique is not enough: We must understand how and why techniques function or fail in given contexts.

  • live training

    Rolling, Randori, Sparring, Scenarios: We must have safe and dynamic way to experiment and develop true skill.

  • meditation

    Concentration, Focus, and Awareness must be trained like any other skill.

  • Personal Integration

    Each of us must develop our own, creative expression of the arts and the style and appraoch that speaks to us.