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James Clingerman’s IBJJA / Fight Hub Headquarters
Delivering the Highest Level of Realistic Martial Arts Instruction AnywhereInstructors –


Instructor Bios –
James Clingerman – Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Black Belt


James got his start in Martial arts at the age of 13, when he began studying Karate. Not being satisfied with the effectiveness of the art, he ventured out and began studying many forms including Japanese JuJutsu, Judo, Kickboxing and Jeet-Kune-Do.

After Experiencing Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu for the first time in 1997, James fell in love with the art and came to realize that due to it’s effectiveness, it was the one most suitable for him. Since then, James has become a diligent student of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.

Along with holding a Black Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu under Mario Roberto, James also holds a Brown Belt in Judo, under 7th Dan Virgil Bowles and has practiced Boxing & Muay Thai Muay Thai with former Heavyweight Champ Scott Sullivan, Striker’s Journal Creator, Chris Papandria, and MMA standouts Julie Kedzie and Darrell Smith, to name a few.

James has had well over 200 combined competitive matches in BJJ, Judo, Submission Grappling and Mixed Martial Arts (MMA). He is constantly adding to his already impressive list of tournament wins.

A believer in continued education, James is always learning and developing new techniques for his own personal use and to provide the most advanced and practical techniques to his students.

Mr. Clingerman is also considered one of the Midwest’s top Authorities on Mixed Martial Arts. He is certified to perform all duties under the International Sport Combat Federation (ISCF) and is one of the most in-demand MMA referees in the Midwest. James has refereed events such as International Fight League (IFL), Legends of Fighting Championship (LFC), United Fight League (UFL), Cage Rage, Elite Cage Fighting (ECF), Colosseum Combat and many others.

James is the Author of many Instructional DVDs including; The BJJ Foundation (The World’s Most Complete BJJ Fundamentals Curriculum), The Cyclone Submission Series, Mastering the Von Flue Choke, Peruvian Dozen 2.0, and countless others.


Max Burt –


Max Burt is a graduate of Ball State University where he earned his Bachelor of Science in Mathematics. Since discovering Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Max has consistently trained a minimum of three times a week. This often required making the hour and a half trip from Muncie to the Indiana Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Academy twice a week while maintaining a full time high school teaching position. Early in 2006 Max began teaching Brazilian Jiu Jitsu at the YMCA in Muncie. This led Max to realize that he wanted to become more involved in the martial art. Late in 2006 Max moved to the Greenwood area so he could train on a more regular schedule. Since moving Max has earned his Purple Belt.

Max has had his share of success in competition. He is a Multi-Time EXTREME GRAPPLING OPEN (EGO) Champion in both Gi and No-Gi. He has won Multiple titles in both his weight and Open divisions in events such as; The Indiana State Championships, Bluegrass Open, and Nashville Grappling Open.

In September of 2007 Max became a key element in the opening of the Indiana Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Academy�s Franklin location and currently operates as it’s head instructor.


Darrell Smith –


Darrell “Bulldog” Smith, like so many others, comes from a wrestling background. After 9 years experience in wrestling, Darrell joined the Army National Guard because they would make him “get up and run in the morning”. Darrell began his MMA career in 2000 fighting in an event in Indiana. He has since fought all over the US, in many different events, including Bodog (Costa Rica), Hook’N’Shoot, AFC, Cage Rage, King of the Cage and many others.

“Bulldog”, a name given to him by a fight promoter who couldn’t remember his name, began training in Kickboxing in 2003. This is about the same time that he was introduced to the Indiana Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Academy and began training Jiu Jitsu and Mixed Martial Arts with James Clingerman.

Darrell has over 40 MMA fights with wins of notable fighters such as UFC’s Brian Geraghty, IFL’s Bart Palazweski, and WEC’s Sherron “Rob Roy” Leggett.

Darrell has also created a DVD that features his Unorthodox fighting style, Bulldog’s Unorthodox MMA!.


Chris Papandria –


Chris grew up in New Jersey and at the age of 9 started training in Judo. At one of the numerous Judo tournaments Chris had competed in, he met a martial arts instructor that was there doing a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu demo. Chris thought that Jiu-Jitsu would be a perfect compliment to his judo, so he instantly signed up. The instructor, Alex Wilkie, and Chris immediately hit it off. Chris then split his time between the Judo school and the American Freestyle school which Wilkie owned. While training with Wilkie he was exposed to numerous martial arts, including Kickboxing, Aikido, Stick Fighting, and of course Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.

By the time Chris was a junior in high school he had earned a brown belt in Judo as well as a purple belt in American Freestyle. Towards the end of his junior year, Chris entered the New York State Judo Championship. Before his first match, his instructor, Yoshisodo Yonezuka, had told him that if he won his division, he would be promoted to Black Belt. Chris then went on to win his entire division including a back and forth final match with the previous year’s champion. While standing on the podium, he not only received his gold medal, but also his black belt in Judo.

Chris then took time off from martial arts to focus on his studies at The University of Hawaii (where he was also quarterback for the football team). Unfortunately during his sophomore year, he suffered an extensive back injury that could have ended his martial arts career as well as his ability to walk. After a year of rehab, Chris regained the ability to walk and decided to put all his time into Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and Kickboxing. After placing well in many local grappling events, including NAGA and Grapplers Quest, Chris was awarded his Black Belt in American Freestyle, by Alex Wilkie.

Eventually, Chris made the decision to expand his Jiu Jitsu training by going to train at Renzo Gracie Black Belt, Ricardo Almeida’s school. Through the next few years, Chris was exposed to classic Brazilian Jiu Jitsu as well as being able to be on the mat with top Black Belts like Renzo Gracie, Ricardo Almeida, Igor Gracie, Dante Rivera, Shawn Williams, John Danaher, and most notably, his close friend and main training partner Joe Vanbrackle.

Chris earned his Blue Belt under Almeida and made the tough decision to relocate to Indianapolis to be with his family. The minute he got here the first thing he did was look for a Jiu Jitsu school. After stopping in and training at the IBJJA one time, he knew that this was the school for him. He felt the level of training and attention to detail was the biggest selling point in staying at IBJJA. Chris has since become one of the Coaches at the IBJJA and has shared his knowledge of Kickboxing in his DVD set the Striker’s Journal!


Justin Curtis –


Justin began competing in freestyle wrestling at the age of six, winning numerous local and state level tournaments. After high school he missed competing in and training for sports, Justin began training Shoot fighting, Kali, and Jeet Kune Do under Jason Winkle and eventually began training Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu under Jack McVicker in Terre Haute, IN. Using his love for competition and a natural grappler Justin excelled in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, placing on the National Level multiple times, winning large tournaments like Naga and Grappler’s Quest as well as the Indiana State Championships.

About the same time he earned his Blue Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu he began competing in Mixed Martial Arts. To quote Justin “I never was a tough guy or a fighter, I just wanted to see if I could use Jiu-Jitsu while some one was trying to punch me”. Justin has amassed a 13-4 record with nine of his wins by submission.

A big believer in cross training and taking what is useful Justin has and continues to cross train and earn rank in multiple disciplines Purple Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu under James Clingerman, Assistant Instructor in Jeet Kune Do, Assistant Instructor in Kali, Brown Belt in Hapkido, Brown Belt in Martial Concepts Hybrid Grappling, Level 4 Martial Concepts Ring Fighting.

Also a devoted fitness “buff” Justin is a certified Personal Trainer under both the National Academy of Sports Medicine and the American Council on Exercise.


Aaron Johnson –


Aaron graduated with a BS in Exercise Science from IUPUI in 2004. Aaron wrestled for 3 years at the University of Indianapolis from 1994-1997. He spent 6 years training at Foxcatcher, the Olympic Training Center. Aaron is a 4x All-American in wrestling at Junior and University levels in Greco Roman. Aaron coached wrestling at Pike High School from 2000-2004 and at University of Indianapolis from 2004-2007.


Matt Stratta –


Matt began his Brazilian Jiu Jitsu in November of 2000. He started training in Franklin, Indiana under Eric Sullivan, a Mario Roberto Brown Belt and IBJJA’s assistant instructor, James Clingerman. Ever since his first class with Eric and James, Matt has been a dedicated and loyal student of the sport and IBJJA. Even though Matt has received continuous beatings at the hands of Mr. Clingerman, they have become life long friends.

In the fall of 2002, Matt moved to Bloomington, Indiana to acquire his B.S. in Elementary Education. While at Indiana University, Matt enrolled in the BJJ courses and trained with the IU BJJ Team, which is a Caique affiliate. Soon after, he became an assistant instructor for IU’s BJJ Classes. The years at IU produced invaluable personal and professional relationships with Tim Sledd, IU�s BJJ Coach and Julie Kedzie, current fighter for Team Jackson.

Matt has also traveled abroad to teach and has had the opportunity to compete and place in tournaments in Australia and Korea. He also holds a Black Belt and Instructor Certificate in Tae-Kwon-Do.

Matt is now an Assistant Instructor for IBJJA/Team James Clingerman. He currently holds the rank of faixa roxa, Purple Belt.


Chris McKarski –


Chris McKarski began training in Martial Arts in 1990 when he was at a local Tae Kwon Do school. He continued to train in Tae Kwon Do until he was 13 when he was introduced to Muay Thai. He trained in Muay Thai off and on over the course of the next five years.

Upon graduating high school, Chris joined the Marine Corps and was shipped off to boot camp in November of 2002. While in the Marine Corps, Chris qualified for a wide variety of specialized training in armed and unarmed combatives that included, The Marine Corps Martial Arts Program, Military Operations in Urban Training, Cold Weather Survival, Land Navigation, and other specialized training. In late 2004, Chris was medically discharged under Honorable conditions and returned to Indiana. While in the Marine Corps, Chris had been introduced to the world of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu by a friend who trained with Jean Jaques Machado in Torrance, California. Chris attended a few classes at the Machado Academy before returning home to continue his education and Jiu Jitsu training.

Since returning to Indiana, Chris has earned a Bachelors degree in European History and is scheduled to attend Graduate school for Medieval Theology in the near future. While attending school he also pursued his passion for Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. After bouncing around from academy to academy, Chris found a home at the Indiana Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Academy under the tutelage of James Clingerman.

Chris has been training at the IBJJA since 2006 and is now a Blue Belt under James. In May of 2009, Chris had his first MMA fight on the UFL “Lights Out” show. He won with a triangle choke in 1:29 of the 1st round. Chris plans on continuing to fight and compete in MMA and BJJ in the future while developing and furthering his skills in the two prospective sports.


Lance Perry –


Lance Perry is a former United States Marine, and is presently an IndyCar tire changer. His primary education is from Indiana University in Exercise Science(CSCS in progress). Lance currently works for the Panther Racing IndyCar team (pantherracing.com) in the role of Human Performance and Health and Wellness Coordinator. In this position, he develops and implements the off-season training program for the IndyCar pit crew, including video analysis of pit stops during the season; and the Health and Wellness program for entire company year-round.

Lance began working with athletes in Cleveland , Ohio in 2003 and has since worked with athletes in multiple sports across various levels of development. His clients have excelled in boxing, basketball, football, and racing. In addition to his expertise in sports-specific physical training, Lance is very knowledgeable in Sports Nutrition and will soon begin studies in Traditional Chinese Medicine.


AJ Clingerman –


AJ Clingerman got her first taste of Martial Arts studying Karate in College. Since then she has been more behind the scenes in the Martial Arts.

AJ is Co-Owner of Fight Hub LLC with her husband, James. She has trained in BJJ and Kickboxing and competed in a few grappling tournaments.

While AJ has been involved in the Academy since it’s inception, her focus is in keeping the Fight Hub Headquarters running like a well-oiled machine.

AJ does take a break from her busy schedule of organizing the Fight Hub Academy and the EXTREME GRAPPLING OPEN (EGO) Tournaments, to teach the Tuesday morning conditioning class at the Greenwood Academy.


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