EVENT: Master Max Trombini Seminar & Movie Screening


We’re proud to announce an exclusive opportunity to meet Sensei Rodrigo’s BJJ Master, Master Max Trombini. Master Trombini will be hosting a BJJ seminar and movie screening on April 15th, which is open to children (for the first hour) and for adults. Details are below and on our Facebook invitation.

Adult Schedule
11am – 130pm: BJJ Seminar
130pm – 3pm: Master Max Movie Screening
Snacks will be served
Investment: $100 cash

Kids Schedule
11am – 12pm
Investment: $40

Join us for an incredible opportunity to learn from one of the most skilled BJJ masters!


15th Annual Judo Alberta’s All Girls Overnight Camp Recap

Nearly 100 girls from Judo Alberta participating from all over Alberta and Saskatchewan attended an all girls overnight camp at the academy last month. Great evening of Judo throws and smiles all around!





The Difference Between BJJ and Aikido


The different types and forms of martial arts are generally related to Japan. However, it is a difficult task to make certain comparisons between any two martial arts. There are several martial arts, including Judo, Aikido, Jujitsu, BJJ, Karate and etc. Most of these martial arts have very slight variations in tactics or strategy. Sometimes, even the same martial art may differ between schools.

Experts separated the Eastern martial arts (unarmed) into two groups, the ‘hard’ category of martial arts involves more on striking, including kicking and punching, and the ‘soft’ category of martial arts involves more on grappling, including holds and throws.

About Aikido

Aikido was created by Morihei Uyeshiba, which was started around 1925. Uyeshiba developed the interest in the martial arts when he was a child, and he mastered various forms of martial arts including jujitsu (Japanese Version).
Most people consider Aikido as a Modern Martial Art because compared to other martial arts it is developed only in early 1900. It has been around since 11th century or so. Uyeshiba became the Doshu of the school, later his son and his grandson took care of the school and the tradition continues till date.

Aikido is more about the technique, it is about merging with the motions that the attacker is using and conveying the attack instead of using the blows. This martial art requires more focus, the individual must focus on training and he should know how to deal with the forces of nature. The individual should learn the art that unites both mental energy and physical skill.

Aikido also focuses on balance and harmony. The meaning of the word Aikido in English is “Harmony of the Spirit”. The main objective of Sensei Ueshiba was to develop a martial art that actually promotes harmony and at the same allow the individual to use it for self-defense.

About Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ)

Brazilian Jiujitsu is a martial art that focuses on ground fighting and on grappling. BJJ was formed from Kodokan Judo ground fighting basics that were taught by various individuals. However, BJJ came to be its own martial art through the practices, experiment and adaptation of judo through Helio Gracie and Carlos and the art was passed to further generations.

The martial art mainly focuses on submission, take down and fighting on the back techniques and the main objective of BJJ is to get your attacker to submit.

The Difference Between BJJ and Aikido

BJJ and Aikido both focus on the grappling category, however Aikido does include striking techniques. Concepts between the two martial arts are similar by redirecting the energy of the opponent. In Aikido, there is no sparring, which allows BJJ, in the case of self defense and competition, to be favoured for having a closer representation to a reality simulation.

Injury is also more prevalent in Aikido as it uses joint twists and joint locks which lead to bruising, as well as breakfalls that could affect the knees.

Regardless of your choice, learning martial arts provides the best method to building your confidence, staying in shape, and protecting yourself and your family from harm. Both Aikido and BJJ offers increased cardiovascular health, improved reflexes, strength and conditioning in a total body workout. Intangibly, it also improves your self-esteem, self-confidence, discipline and respect for others.

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We Now Offer BJJ Classes 7 Days a Week!


With the introduction of new classes to our schedule this month, we’re proud to announce that we now offer Brazilian Jiu Jitsu classes every day of the week! The move helps accommodate the busy schedule of our students, allowing for more opportunities to learn BJJ and grow as a skilled martial artist.

Our new changes to our Sunday schedule opens up both our BJJ Kids and Adults programs for all members ages 7 and up. Families are welcome to join together in both our Saturday 10am to 11am time slot, and our Sunday 11am to 12pm time slot – while BJJ intermediate/advanced adults can take part in a Sunday open mat from 11am to 12pm.

See the new class list below or take a look at the full updated schedule here.

BJJ Kids: 6:00 to 7:00 pm
BJJ Adults (Fundamentals): 12:00 to 1:00 pm
BJJ Adults (Fundamentals): 7:00 to 8:00 pm
BJJ Adults (Intermediate/Advanced): 12:00 to 1:00 pm
BJJ Adults (Intermediate/Advanced): 1:00 to 2:00 pm – Sparring *NEW
BJJ Adults (Intermediate/Advanced): 7:00 to 8:00 pm – Drills
BJJ Adults (Intermediate/Advanced): 8:00 to 9:00 pm – Sparring

BJJ Kids: 5:00 to 6:00 pm
BJJ Adults (All Levels): 7:00 to 8:00 am *NEW
BJJ Adults (Fundamentals): 6:00 to 7:00 pm
BJJ Adults (Intermediate/Advanced): 7:00 to 8:00 pm – Drills
BJJ Adults (Intermediate/Advanced): 8:00 to 9:00 pm – Sparring

BJJ Kids: 6:00 to 7:00 pm
BJJ Adults (Fundamentals): 12:00 to 1:00 pm
BJJ Adults (Fundamentals): 7:00 to 8:00 pm
BJJ Adults (Intermediate/Advanced): 12:00 to 1:00 pm
BJJ Adults (Intermediate/Advanced): 1:00 to 2:00 pm – Sparring *NEW
BJJ Adults (Intermediate/Advanced): 7:00 to 8:00 pm – Drills
BJJ Adults (Intermediate/Advanced): 8:00 to 9:00 pm – Sparring

BJJ Kids: 5:00 to 6:00 pm
BJJ Adults (All Levels): 7:00 to 8:00 am *NEW
BJJ Adults (Fundamentals): 6:00 to 7:00 pm
BJJ Adults (Intermediate/Advanced): 7:00 to 8:00 pm – Drills
BJJ Adults (Intermediate/Advanced): 8:00 to 9:00 pm – Sparring

BJJ Adults (Fundamentals): 12:00 to 1:00 pm
BJJ Adults (Intermediate/Advanced): 12:00 to 1:00 pm
BJJ Adults (Intermediate/Advanced): 1:00 to 2:00 pm – Sparring *NEW

BJJ Adults (Fundamentals): 11:00 to 12:00 pm *NEW
BJJ Adults (Intermediate/Advanced): 11:00 am to 1:00 pm – NoGi Sparring

BJJ Kids: 11:00 to 12:00 pm *NEW
BJJ Adults (Fundamentals): 11:00 to 12:00 pm *NEW
BJJ Adults (Intermediate/Advanced): 11:00 to 12:00 pm – Open Mat

New Classes Starting February 2017

With the new year just around the corner, we’re happy to introduce new classes to our existing schedule beginning in February 2017. With our unlimited classes membership, we are now able to provide a more flexible opportunity to accommodate your busy schedules, while also introducing new programs you and your family can join.

  • Weekends at the academy will now include Fundamental classes. This will allow students to attend the entire require classes on the curriculum from Friday to Sunday.
  • Weekends will also include a new Kids class:  a new program option for children ages 7 to 12. These Saturdays and Sundays classes are part of a new Weekend Kids program.
  • Friday’s Self Defense class has been very popular at the academy. We are now expanding these classes for members into Mondays and Wednesdays. Friday will continue to be free to drop-in, while the new classes will be part of a new Street Self Defense program.
  • Are you an early bird? We now have morning classes on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 7am for BJJ at all class levels.
  • New sparring class options are available on Mondays, Wednesdays,  and Fridays after the 12pm BJJ all levels classes. These classes will start at 1pm.
  • With the return of Muay Thai at the academy, we’re expanding our Muay Thai classes into Tuesdays and Thursdays. For this program, students can choose between two time slots: Mondays and Wednesdays, or Tuesdays and Thursdays.

See a breakdown of the new time slots below.

Mondays & Wednesdays

  • Kids Judo – 5:00 to 6:00pm
  • Self Defense – 6:00 to 7:00pm

Tuesdays & Thursdays

  • BJJ All levels – 7am
  • Muay Thai – 7pm

Mondays, Wednesdays & Fridays

  • Sparring Class – 1pm


  • Fundamentals Class – 11am
  • Kids Judo – 11am


  • Fundamentals Class – 11am
  • Kids BJJ – 11am
  • Open Mat – 11am

What’s the Difference Between BJJ and Taekwondo?


BJJ Taekwondo 
 Focus Grappling Art Striking Art (Emphasis on Kicks)
 Origin  Brazil (via Japan)  Korea
 Founder  Carlos & Helio Gracie (via Mitsuyo Maeda)  General Choi Hong Hi
 Influenced by  Judo (or Kano Jujitsu)  Korean martial arts (Taekkyeon, Subak, and Gwonbeop)
 Fight Techniques  Choke-holds, takedowns, and joint locks  Kicks and hand strikes, including head-height kicks, jumping and spinning kicks, and fast kicking techniques
 Fight Positions  Advancing position, ground fighting, and submitting an opponent  Fighting, diagonal, and crouched stances
 Popular Choice for  Both children and adults, men and women
 Physical Fitness Total body workout, improved cardiovascular health, improved reflexes, strength and conditioning
 Philosophy  Self improvement, self-esteem, discipline, confidence, respect, body awareness, self-control, perseverance

On paper, Taekwondo and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu may be two of the most different sports out there. From its differing fight techniques and stances, the only real commonality may be that both sports are newer to the martial arts scene than its elder statesmen, Karate and Judo. However the intangible takeaways can be parallel in many ways.

One of the vast differences between the two are its focus: Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is a grappling art, starting from the feet as a combatant takes down an opponent for a submission. Taekwondo is a striking art – much like Karate – but with a stronger emphasis on kicks and hand strikes to win a match.

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu was originally founded in (surprise!) Brazil by Carlos and Helio Gracie around 1914. The Gracies had been taught the ways of Kano Jujitsu or Judo from Mitsuyo Maeda in Japan before transitioning into BJJ.

The origin of Taekwondo can be traced back to around 1955, introduced by General Choi Hong Hi in Korea. It was inspired by a variety of Korean martial arts, such as Taekkyeon, Subak, and Gwonbeop. There are two types of Taekwondo: WTF and ITF – the main difference being ITF is North Korean (and the original Taekwondo), and WTF is South Korean (a modernized ITF) . The form between the two are different, with ITF having similarities to Karate, however the kicks remain the same. ITF is suited for self-defence teaching, while WTF is primarily used for sport sparring and competition, including the Olympics.

Both sports are considered newer, and in some ways, take part of its teachings from other martial arts which had birthed in the 1700’s and the 1800’s.

On the mat, BJJ techniques include a handful of choke-holds, takedowns, and joint locks to submit an opponent and claim a match. There are dozens of potential moves, making every reaction a calculated one. This is one of the primary reasons that it works as a fitness and self defense mechanism for both men and women of all ages.

There’s more to Taekwondo than just kicks and punches. Taekwondo is popularized by its use of kick techniques – from head-height kicks, jumping and spinning kicks, and fast kick techniques. It uses a combination of speed and agility called the “Theory of Power”, where the power of a strike increases dramatically with the speed of the strike. Like BJJ, it’s popular among both men and women of all ages for self defense and fitness.

Positioning between the two sports also differ in many ways. BJJ uses an advancing position, grounding fighting, and submission of an opponent. Taekwondo uses both a distance based and upright stance to approach and defeat an opponent. It’s important to research which fight position is best for you or your family to learn.

Taekwondo and BJJ provide numerous intangibles to self-improvement. Participation in both sports can increase a student’s discipline, self-esteem, respect for others, confidence, and body awareness. BJJ has been a popular choice for women as a form of self-defence, allowing a typically smaller person to overtake a larger opponent through leverage and body resistance. Taekwondo, particularly ITF, can be a very strong self-defence tool with the proper instruction and master – although it’s important to remember that a good martial artist will use his/her awareness and teachings to avoid trouble and resolve conflicts.

So, which is the best martial art for you and your family? If you’re interested in learning self defence, BJJ or ITF Taekwondo may be a better choice. For mental and physical fitness, both sports will provide great return on your investment. For competition fighting, you can’t go wrong with BJJ and WTF Taekwondo. Like we always say, research research research!

Belt Ceremony Photos (December 2016)

On December 3rd, we hosted our bi-annual belt promotion ceremony. Congratulations to all who attended and received their promotions these past few months, improving their skills with great success on the mats.













What’s the Difference Between BJJ and Karate?


 BJJ Karate 
 Focus Grappling  Striking
 Origin  Brazil (via Japan)  Ryukyu Kingdom (now Japan)
 Founder  Carlos & Helio Gracie (via Mitsuyo Maeda)  Gichin Funakoshi
 Influenced by  Judo (or Kano Jujitsu)  Chinese martial arts
 Fight Techniques  Choke-holds, takedowns, and joint locks  Punches, kicks, knees and elbow strikes
 Fight Positions  Advancing position, ground fighting, and submitting an opponent  Stand-up fighting and distance stances
 Popular Choice for  Both children and adults, men and women
 Physical Fitness Total body workout, improved cardiovascular health, improved reflexes, strength and conditioning
 Philosophy  Self improvement, self-esteem, discipline, confidence, respect, focus

Karate is undoubtedly one of the most popular sports in the world. With an average of 50 to 100 million practitioners worldwide, it’s the mainstream choice for those interested in beginning their path to learning a martial art. However in recent years, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) has edged forward as the “new kid on the block”, more recently popularized by the the Ultimate Fighting Championships (UFC) and their legendary mixed martial arts fighters becoming household names. Compared to many of the fight techniques such as Taekwondo, Muay Thai, and Judo – whose roots traced back to the 17th and 18th century – BJJ is one of a handful of fight sports to have birthed in the 1900’s. Karate, in comparison, originates from the late 17th century and has evolved over the past few centuries, having reached a height in popularity in the 1960’s from mainstream cinema.

So, what’s the difference between Karate and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu?

The two martial arts are very different in fighting style. Karate is focused on striking, while BJJ is focused on grappling. Karate involves stand-up fighting and distance stances, while BJJ includes advancing positions, ground fighting, and opponent submission. In the most simple sense: BJJ begins where Karate ends.

Both sports originate in Japan, although at different time periods. Brazilian Jiu Jitsu takes most of its roots from Judo or Kano Jujitsu when Judo master Mitsuyo Maeda travelled to Brazil to teach Carlos and Helio Gracie, who then went on to develop Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Karate, on the other hand was influenced by Chinese martial arts during the culture exchanges between China and Japan.

Mobility, body control, and physical fitness can be explored in both fields of practice. In Karate, you can expect to learn proper techniques to punches, kicks, knees, and elbow striking as you aim to put your opponent down on the mat. This is one of the key differences, as Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu utilizes takedowns and submission tactics such as choke-holds, sweeps, and joint-locks to bring your opponent from their standing on their feet to “tapping out”.

Both sports are a popular choice for children and adults of all ages. Self-improvement can be found in many areas of BJJ: from self-esteem, discipline, confidence, respect, and body awareness. Karate offers a similar return on your investment. There is a tendency for women to join BJJ in part of learning self-defence, as the use of body control allows a typically smaller person to overtake a larger opponent through the use of leverage and body resistance. Karate offers a good opportunity to practice self-defence, although strength and power become more of a necessity.

Like most decisions in life, choosing the right martial art for yourself or your family requires proper research. Take the time to learn about the clubs in the area, and ensure you will be learning from an experienced, authentic, and educated master. It’s like bringing your child to the doctor: would you bring them to a poorly rated doctor that is 5 minutes away, or to a highly rated doctor that is 15 minutes away?

After you have decided on a reputable martial arts club, look for a trial offer so that you can decide if that BJJ or Karate is right for you or your children. Dedication is an important attribute for learning.

Your journey to self improvement begins today!


THRIVE After School Program


The Rodrigo Resende Academy is happy to present the THRIVE After School Program. Registrations for Fall 2017 starting now!

The THRIVE After School Program provides your children with a safe, fun learning environment to develop physical, mental, and social skills to prepare them for life. Our trained staff not only lead the kids through martial arts and a variety of physical activities, but also help mentor them to be their best. We provide time and support for homework or extra learning initiatives, as well as some free play time in our rec room to build social skills with their
peers. There is no other program like THRIVE!

We are parents just like you and we want what is best for our children. We expect those who coach or care for our kids to do so with kindness, respect, patience, leadership, positivity, character, and integrity.

THRIVE is lead by:

Rodrigo Resende – Owner and Director

  • 3rd degree Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Black Belt
  • 4th degree Judo black belt
  • 25 years of practice and 13 years of teaching experience
  • NCCP Level 2
  • 10 years in Canada developing high level competitors, self defense programs for law enforcement, civilians and anti-bullying programs for kids

Natasha Rychlik – Program Manager

  • FITKIDS coach Certifications include:
  • AFLCA certified fitness leader
  • ACE sports conditioning
  • ACE youth fitness
  • EverActive KIDS
  • NCCP fundamental movement skills
  • Training for Warriors Level 1

The Rodrigo Resende Academy is hosting a THRIVE Open House on Saturday December 10th from 11am until 1pm (469 South Ave). Meet Rodrigo, Natasha and the staff, ask your questions, and learn more about how martial arts and social activities can benefit a child’s growth.

A Message From The Program Manager

Hi! Thanks for your interest in THRIVE! I am a proud Mom as well as a certified fitness leader, specialized in children and youth. I’m very excited to work with Rodrigo Resende Academy managing THRIVE after school program. THRIVE is a fantastic opportunity for families as I believe the practice of martial arts combined with functional fitness training is a winning combination for a lifetime of quality movement and self discipline. I hope that my knowledge and experience in coaching, business management and youth fitness will help ensure that THRIVE offers families an ideal solution to their after school scheduling needs.

Natasha, THRIVE



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Holiday Gift Card Promotion: Get a Free Gi After Sign Up on a One Month Membership! (New Students)


The Rodrigo Resende Academy is happy to present the ultimate holiday gift for those looking to improve their fitness, well-being, and learn martial arts in the new year!

With the purchase of a gift card, the recipient will receive a free Gi (valued at $354) upon their first month sign up at the academy. Gift cards can be purchased for $169, saving your friends and family 50% off their Gi purchase. For more information, please call us at: (780) 960-1102 or visit us at the academy: 469 South Ave in Spruce Grove.

Offer is valid from November 1 and December 23, 2016 and is limited to new students, kids and adult classes.