Our Instructors

Head instructor and owner Joao Luz is a registered IBJJF black belt rewarded from Paulo Rezende. He has earned his 2nd degree and been associated under legendary Marcelo Garcia since 2009, a long time friend and training partner. After twenty plus years of training, Professor Joao has accumulated a wealth of practical knowledge that he passes down indiscriminately to his students. It’s easily said that a team is nothing without it’s leader, and that is what Professor Joao represents on the mat; a constant presence, guiding and shaping everyone who steps into our building into competent Jiu-Jitsu practitioners and generally better human beings.

Joao Luz - Head Instructor at Marcelo Garcia Jiu-Jitsu Academy Connecticut

Meet the Team

Ricardo Costa - Student Instructor at Marcelo Garcia Jiu-Jitsu Academy Connecticut


Student Instructor

Ricardo Costa has been apart of the MG family for the past 8 years, in which he has dedicated himself to not only his own training — earning a brown belt in the process —, but in the development of everyone else around him. Having earned a Bachelors Degree in Exercise Science, along with a decade of personal training experience and half a decade of martial arts instruction, he is certainly qualified to be an excellent coach for our adults and youth.

David Oliveira - Student Instructor at Marcelo Garcia Jiu-Jitsu Academy Connecticut


Student Instructor

David Oliveira, yet another vital component of our team, is a black belt and our youngest instructor. After arriving at our doors at sixteen years old, he’s spent the last 10 years devoting his life to Jiu-Jitsu as an active competitor and teacher. Ceaselessly entertaining, David’s lighthearted nature makes him easily approachable to our students, while his experience and wide array of techniques helps mold them into complete and modern Jiu-Jitsu practitioners.

Leone Silva - Student Instructor at Marcelo Garcia Jiu-Jitsu Academy Connecticut


Student Instructor

Leone Silva is a valued member of the team, dedicating his time to assisting in instructing some of our more advanced classes. He earned his black belt under Professor Joao Luz after 9 years of training, along with continuous success in competitions. His natural ability, competition experience, and eagerness to improve translates well into teaching as he pushes everyone to leave it all out on the mat.