AJJ Instructors


Renshi Tony Avila is the founder and head instructor of American Jiu Jitsu (AJJ) of Maplewood, a club organization under the American Jiu Jitsu Federation.

Renshi Tony started his American Jiu Jitsu training in 1994 while living in attending college at MIT.  In 1997, he successfully completed the AJJ Instructor Certification Course and was designated an AJJ Certified instructor.  He went on to earn his First Degree Black belt in 1998 and was promoted to the rank of Shodan.  Renshi Tony then received his Nidan rank (Second Degree Black Belt) in 2001 and Sandan (Third Degree Black Belt) in 2005.

In 2011, Renshi Tony advanced to his present level of Junior Master, the rank of Renshi (Fourth Degree Black Belt), by O’Sensei Joe Puleio, the founder of American Jiu Jitsu Centers.  This title is only awarded to a select group of elite martial artists in the American Jiu-Jitsu systems.

Since first teaching in 1997, Renshi Tony has taught thousands of students, including the preparation of high ranking students for various levels of black belt.  Renshi Tony’s breadth of teaching ranges from teaching children and women basic self-defense to training Homeland Security agents and seasoned martial artists in advanced weaponry. His teaching methods ensure that all levels of students understand the basic mental theory and physicality associated with each technique, with safety as a primary concern. 

Renshi Tony is a graduate from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Columbia University.  He is a finance executive in downtown Manhattan, and lives in New Jersey with his beautiful wife and two wonderful children.





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