John Potenza


Coach Potenza began training in the martial arts in 1981.In his 30+ years as a martial artist he has trained in many styles including: Catch as Catch Can Wrestling, Combat Submission Wrestling, Muay Thai Kickboxing, Judo, BJJ, Close Quarter Combat, Military Combatives, American Vadha Kempo Karate, Kung Fu, Kendo, Kenjutsu, Iaido, Iaijutsu, Kali, Escrima, & Aikido achieving Black Belt rank (or equivalent) in the majority of them. Some of his most notable ranks are:



Head Coach: Old School Grappling Catch Wrestling Association

Catch as Catch Can Wrestling (Scientific Wrestling) Assistant Coach: ONE OF ONLY SEVEN IN THE WORLD! Under legendary Catch Wrestling Coach Billy Robinson.

CSW Representative Instructor: Combat Submission Wrestling with 14 years under Sensei Erik Paulson.

1st Degree Black Belt Kodokan Judo: Under Sensei John Saylor

Shodan Iaido (Muso Jikiden Eishin-Ryu): Under Sensei Carl Long & Shimabukuro Hanshi

1st Degree Black Belt Aikido: Under Hanshi Amato

Degree Black Belt Karate: Under Hanshi Amato

1st Degree Black Belt Shingitai Jujutsu: Under Sensei John Saylor

3rd Degree Black Belt Kendo: Under Hanshi George Alexander, and the International Budokan Kendo Federation.

2nd Degree Black Belt American Vadha Kempo Karate, & Certified Instructor: Under Master John Salvaggio, (the systems founder).

Fifth Degree Black Belt and recognized founder of Integrated Fighting Systems: Under the Combat Martial Arts Practitioners Association.

Member of USA Wrestling, “New Jersey State Wrestling Association”

Certified USA Wrestling Coach: Copper and Bronze levels certified

Certified U.S. Army MACP (Modern Army Combative Program) Level 2 Tactical Instructor: Under the U.S. Army’s 98th Div Combative Cadre, Fort Dix, NJ

Wrote the UFS Air Force TTP – Response to an active shooter in an office environment.

World Karate Union Hall of Fame 2000- Instructor of the year: American Vadha Kempo Karate.
Action Martial Arts Magazine’s Hall Of Fame 2001- Excellence in teaching Martial Arts.
I.A.M.A. Hall of fame 2001- Instructor of The Year: Kendo – Iaijutsu
USA Hall of Fame – 2004 – instructor of the Year: Grappling
USA Hall of Fame – 2005 – Founder of the year – Integrated Fighting Systems.
Budo International Hall of Fame -2005- Instructor of the Year: Mixed Martial Arts
Action Hall of Honors 2009 – Outstanding Contributions to the Martial Arts
Newbreed Fighters Hall of Fame 2011

2 TIME Vadha Kempo Karate Mixed Martial Arts elimination Tournament Champion:
1st Place -Heavy Weight Brown Belt division
1st Place – Heavy Weight Black Belt division.
Super Heavyweight Submission Grappling World Champion: “2002 USKBA Action Sport World Championship.”
Submission Fighting Heavyweight Champion: “2003 Gathering of Warriors.”
Knife Fighting Champion: “2004 “Gathering of Warriors”.
Knife Fighting Champion :“2005 “Gathering of Warriors the Summit”
1st Place Champion in 3 divisions: “The Gathering of Warriors 2005 International Tournament” in Manila, Philippines:
Gold Medal – Long Sword
Gold Medal – Sword & Dagger
Gold Medal – Knife Fighting.
1st Place Champion in 3 divisions “2006 Masters of the Blade:”
Gold medal – Long Sword
Gold Medal – Stick & Knife
Gold Medal – Knife Fighting
1st Place – Division Champion

For over 17 years John & Sandra Potenza have been the Owner, Head Instructor & Fight Team Coach of the Modern Martial Arts Fight Clubs in NJ. Producing countless champions & title holders in Submission Grappling, MMA, Muay Thai, Judo & Weapon based arts.

He was also the Head Coach for 98th Division Combative team – 2012 All Army Combative Tournament at Ft. Hood Texas & 2012 Division Tournament at Ft Dix NJ.