Calasanz Martial Arts and Fitness: Basic Philosophies – by Calasanz


You can have all the technique in the world but that doesn’t necessarily make you a good competitive fighter. Good technique is important, but more importantly, do you have the heart of a fighter?  If you get hit, do you lose your concentration?  Can you shake it off and remain composed? If you answered “yes,” then you have the fighting spirit.  Competitive fighting is different from street fighting. On the streets, you fight to ward off a non-deadly attack and to kill when confronted with a deadly attack. In the dojo or ring it’s different.  I don’t let students fight in the school unless they have control and can compose themselves after being hit.  The person who lacks composure is out of control and gets himself hurt.


If you enjoy fighting and rolling on the ground go for it! But there are ways of avoiding most ground fights by training under the Calasanz Karate, Kung Fu, Kickboxing, boxing and physical arts. Ground fighting or not, under the Calasanz system you’ll still become a better fighter faster. Calasanz says, “I have said all along under this system that you can be a decent fighter without sparring or fighting but if you choose it then you can get the training that is necessary, including heavy drills. If you want to fight under in the MMA system you should go for some ground-training no matter what.”


Many student who are serious about the Martial Arts, would never understand that there is a way of becoming a decent fighter without brutality, but immediately you discover that you really want to be more than a decent fighter, meaning being a competitor then things all change, since the early 80s Calasanz has proved demonstrated that logic over and over, he trained some students that went beyond of being decent fighter when they stepped on the ring with some well trained competitor and they have won, this concept was proved over and over. We did that since the early 80s. Be brutal in your training, but still follow a basic discipline at the beginning of your workout. Those who want to feel and believe that they would like to learn how to fight but they do not like to spar then you could contact us.

Calasanz Martial Arts and Fitness


507 Westport Ave, Norwalk CT 06851

Wasting Money at Other Schools and Seminars: by Calasanz

Many martial artists spend so much money for training that if they went and looked over their bank accounts, they would be shocked how much they wasted. Those that decide to attend a certain school or go to seminars like the ones that will not be mentioned by name hold, where you just watch people perform and get a certification handed to you, end up costing people thousands of unnecessary dollars. Once the strikers came into the MMA world, some of these type of fighters were finished and some of their students came to me to learn how to be a better stand-up fighter. This is not a knock on ground fighting but I do not teach ground work because I teach my students not to end up on the ground by building strong fighters and very good strikers. Some of my students like Chris Mottola, Kevin McIntyre, Rod, Darryl Dash, Rodney, or Peter are very difficult to bring down but if a fight ended up on the ground, they still have a great chance to win the fight. Going back even further, when I was a child on the farm and ended up in a fight, if it went to the ground I always came out on top because I was born with a gift for martial arts.

One of my former students and best friends, a talented wrestler and judo practitioner named Mike is guilty of spending too much money for training ever since he moved away. Even though Mike is training on his own now, he spent lots of money at various schools, flying out to seminars and competitions when he has time, when he should be teaching. I care because Mike is a friend and it hurt to see him pay all that money when he could have gotten all his training and learned how to be an instructor with me for a lot less.

I hope that someday Mike will return to Connecticut so I can help him establish himself as an instructor, to teach with me, and continue his evolution as a martial artist. Martial artists and future martial artists can learn from me for less cost and gain more knowledge at my school than at any expensive seminar.

Calasanz Martial Arts and Fitness

507 Westport Ave,Norwalk CT06851


The Story of Calasanz Martial Arts and its Students

Calasanz came to the United States with a dream. That dream was realized after watching Bruce Lee in the movie “Enter the Dragon.”  Coming to America to make a movie became a goal for Calasanz. To promote his name, he chose over 60 students, most of which were the best street fighters alive. In the early 80s, the best street fighters were here in Norwalk, Connecticut and were citizens there as well. Calasanz devoted his life to the martial arts because he was born with a gift for it. Calasanz is not a regular black belt, he is more than that and he has proved that, not just in America, but as a 14 year old he went to take a class at a karate school and did not return to the school for three months. Why? He noticed too many mistakes but mostly he did not like the excessive brutality. In his mind, he said “There is no reason for this.” Going back to those Calasanz chose to promote, these students were courageous people, but also they were nice human beings. His students were not thugs; they were good people just like Calasanz.

Calasanz’s students that helped promote the system are Darryl Dash (Dash has a separate blog entry dedicated to him), who was the first black belt in the system, John Courtney (the man who really helped Calasanz to succeed and to get where he is today), but there are many others like Mike Gibson, Roger Mayers, Joe Perreira, Reggie Blackwell, Bill Sullivan, James Cassanell, Tyre Stwart, and Patrick Murphy. They will never be forgotten for their contributions. After 1987, when the business was up and running, many students came along that are great friends to Calasanz to this day. He considers them to be as close as family. Some of them deserve to be mentioned:  Robert Sapiro, Grace Luppino, Noram Bloom, Mario Contaccesi, Dee Hohn, Angel Llanos, Peter Valis, Chris Schrade, Gerry Manning, David Been, Dennis Grimaldi, Beth Arthur, Renee Fortin, Rod Kathabi, Dave Tartaglia, Jeff Prescott, Adam Colberg, Andrew Dominick, Luis Vega, Wesley Elizabeth Cullin, Bill Smith, Amy Gery, Tom Barcello, Dalila Willian, Jennifer Li, Rebecca Lyon, and of course Jacquie, Ron Lake, and hundreds of others.

Calasanz can only name so many people since there have been so many students over the years, some of them not only learned martial arts from him, but they helped out. Calasanz will always remember them, and he hopes they will always remember him. 

Calasanz came to the U.S., he wanted to promote his name. Two days after being here, his name became very popular in Bridgeport,Connecticut, especially at the University of Bridgeport; they could not believe what he was capable of doing. They asked him to put on an event for the freshman students, and soon after that, Calasanz was called upon to put on a show to be seen internationally on TV, called back then, Miss Venus USA. Being there really helped Calasanz to believe that he would become as good as or better than Bruce Lee.

Today, Calasanz is promoting his system that started in 2001, but also the school is also promoting Goju Ryu is his own way and dubbed it Calasanz Goju Ryu. Students or teachers from other styles of Goju Ryu will learn that this system is one of the most practical and realistic styles in the world today.

Calasanz Main style, Goju Ryu, Wing Chun, Cheng Chuang, Chinese boxing, Wing Chun Ground Fighting, General Kickboxing, MMA, Boxing, and Recreational Boxing are the roots of Calasanz Physical Arts.

This is just an idea of how far Calasanz is going with his martial arts system.

Calasanz Martial Arts and Fitness

507 Westport Ave,Norwalk CT06851


Calasanz DVDs

The ancient, Eastern method of teaching the martial arts required the student to watch the instructor and then mimic his movements without one word being exchanged.  Western students demand a lot more explanation and often ask too many questions.  This leads to over-analyzing on the student’s part, making the learning process much more stressful than it really needs to be.  Perfection of the movements in the Eastern sense comes with time as the student matures. Sometimes, it’s best to just watch, see the bigger picture, and then start practicing.  

In keeping with this ancient tradition, Calasanz has created a series of instructional DVDs designed to help you grasp the “bigger picture.” Watching the DVDs at home or here at the dojo before class lets you know what to expect and helps you relax the mind as you visualize yourself doing the movements. The result is that if you do your “homework,” your time in class will be more productive.  The reason being for watching the DVDs at the Center is to keep you from making excuses if you bring them home, most of the time it makes impossible for you to spend 10 minutes them before going to the School. 

Calasanz offers over 700 videos covering topics such as basics, forms, self-defense, weaponry, kickboxing, Regular Boxing  Recreational Boxing, Wing Chun, Goju Ryu, traditional and 20 Arm Wooden Dummy, Chinese Boxing and physical conditioning through Calasanz Physical Arts. Special DVDs are also available to help you improve your athletic performance in non-martial art related sports like golf, tennis, soccer, baseball, football, and ice hockey.  The DVDs are easy to understand and are a great instructional tool for students at any level of training.  

Modern technology now makes it possible for you to have a private session with Calasanz for the mere cost of a DVD. Special rates are available for members of the Okugi, Rinkiohen and Young Athletes program.  

Make an appointment with Calasanz today to choose the right DVD to help enhance your martial arts training! Young Athletes will be watching the DVDs upstairs, they will spend 10 minutes either before their session of during their session. Many of the Young Athletes who train privately upstairs with Calasanz, they don’t have to worry, Calasanz already knows what DVDs best for them.

Calasanz Monday Night Fight School

Interested in MMA????  Short on cash and time but want to get in a good workout?  Drop-in on our Monday Night Fight School!  Learn the basics of mixed martial arts fighting at Calasanz Physical Arts, Monday nights, from 6-8PM.  Different instructors who will guide you in building a well-rounded martial arts background present new topics each week.  Start with a great conditioning workout and then go on to learn striking fundamentals like punching, kicking, blocking, footwork, and the use of elbows and knees. Classes progress to submission techniques from judo, wrestling, and Brazilian jiu-jitsu under a qualified instructor’s supervision.  No pre-registration, no contracts, and no traditional training. Just mixed martial arts at the drop-in rate of $15.00 per class! You pick the nights you want to train! No previous experience is necessary! If you have experience, this is a great way to keep your skills sharp!

Train Like A Competitor Without Competing

It takes a special person to be a competitor – Less then 1% of 1% of the population has the ability.  But the good news is that the rest of the world can train like these competitors, without the brutality and gain all the benefits that come along with it.

Train Like a Fighter Without Fighting

My Training, My Teachers

When I started Martial Arts all I wanted was to be a good fighter.

My plan was not to learn one style of martial arts and stick with it for the rest of my life. I also had no aspirations of creating my own system or even having my own school. What I wanted to do is make myself a well-rounded martial artist. All I wanted to be was a good fighter, nothing more, nothing less. Today I teach the CALASANZ SYSTEM, an eclectic style I created and a reflection of my personal path as a martial artist.

My informal training to the fighting arts began on the farms and streets of Dominican Republic where disputes between men were often settled with fists. My first exposure to formal martial arts training however was in Goju Karate and where I initially earned my black belt credentials.

My instructor was Master Tameyoshi Sakamoto, who introduced Goju Ryu to the Dominican Republic in 1958. What was interesting about Tameyoshi Sakamoto was that he was trained in Judo and introduced his students to the concept of combining ground fighting along with karate. It was there where I met two exceptional martial artists and friends, Rafael Martinez and Lizardo Diaz.

While I had great respect for Goju Ryu, its history and my instructors, I quickly noticed the limitations of the style in terms of practical street fighting and self-defense. I also watched my classmates take punishing blows to the body and thought to myself, there had to be a better way.

The practicality of what we today call “mixed martial arts” training was so clear to me that I decided to learn one style very well and then pursue others to at least a brown belt level to round out my martial arts training.

When I arrived at the University of Bridgeport in Connecticut in 1980, I met a young Japanese man who was a fourth degree black belt in Judo. Because we were both students, money was scarce so we decided to trade. I taught him Karate and he taught me Judo, enhancing the basic Judo training I had started back in the Dominican Republic .

Once I completed my brown belt training in Judo, it was now time to focus my attention on learning more about pressure points and joint manipulation, so I took up Hapkido. I was fortunate to have found Yong-Man Lee, an eighth degree black belt in Darien, Connecticut. Grandmaster Lee is an outstanding instructor and I learned much from him. But I kept my promise to myself and moved on after brown belt.

My next step was to learn how to use my hands effectively. Realizing that traditional “hard” style martial arts rely way too much on kicking, I wanted to learn how to punch from the very best, so what better way than to study some Western boxing at Gleason’s Gym? So I did and as a martial artist, it was one of best decisions I made. Mastering a few boxing principles taught me how to use my hands as weapons and not just to distract an opponent while I prepare to throw a few kicks.

Once I was satisfied with the boxing, I felt it was time to pursue some of the “softer” and more Kung fu based martial arts. I chose Wing Chun because of its close quarter fighting, centerline, and economy of motion philosophy. To do this, I took a train into New York City to study with one of the best teachers in the area, Moyat. I also spent a considerable amount of time and effort learning Chang Chuan kung fu and Wu style Tai chi. Kung fu and Tai chi balanced my “hard style” training and taught me how to approach fighting from a new perspective.

From the time I arrived in the United States, I worked as a waiter to support my martial arts education and myself. I taught a few guys how to fight and it wasn’t until one of them convinced me to open a school that the thought even entered my mind.

In closing, my system is what it is, a reflection of my martial arts path. It has gotten people into shape, taught them how to defend themselves and get a grip on life. It has prepared people for tournaments, trained police officers, soldiers and security personnel and even given some peace of mind. And all I wanted was to be a good fighter.

Street Fighting Concept Part 3 – Casting Fighters, The Street Fighter

I knew that I had a gift for the martial arts but I was still too young to understand. I could recognize talent in others. When I got to this country my first idea was that my techniques worked. How could I create a name? I reasoned that I simply needed to train a group of students to fight like me. I also knew since day one that I was not a competitor. I knew that anyone could have all the technique in the world and still not be able to fight. So I went after street fighters. During the early 1980s, Norwalk, Connecticut was the perfect place to find the toughest street fighters. The first to start was Daryl. I taught him what we still call today ‘the system kick.’ This is a side kick delivered at short range. The power in it makes it very difficult to block. Every time a street fighter came to the dojo, he would spar Daryl for one minute. Immediately the word was out. “Sign me up!” Daryl had a kick at close range that sounded like a car crashing on someone’s body.

Martial Arts Training Videos

Going to the Ground

If you enjoy fighting and rolling on the ground go for it! But there are ways of avoiding most ground fights by training under the Calasanz Karate, Kung Fu, Kickboxing, Boxing and Physical Arts System. Ground fighting or not, under the Calasanz System you’ll still become a better fighter faster.

Calasanz says, “I have said all along under this system that you can be a decent fighter without sparring or fighting. If you choose to be a fighter then you can get the training that is necessary, including heavy drills and sparring. If you want to fight MMA you enough ground to at least be able to survive and scramble back to your feet.”

Click for takedown defense drills.