1. Fun, competitive and friendly.


    I am 29 years old, a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu student at Empire Martial Arts. In the past I have tried lifting weights and playing all types of organized sports from hockey to soccer, with little success at sticking with those activities for long. I had never taken Martial Arts classes before I came to EMA, on the suggestion of a client of mine. I firmly believe that my decision to train at EMA has been the best decision I have made for my physical well being in a very long time (no more spare tire!) However, what I didn’t really expect and what keeps me so engaged are the mental benefits I have gained since I started my training. I am by far more confident, patient and able to use my energies properly and at appropriate times, which as Alan and Mike will tell you, is a major key for Brazilian Jiu Jitsu practitioners.

    I can also say without a doubt, it is one of the most fun, competitive and friendly atmospheres I’ve ever trained in. While there are indeed some very tough guys (and girls) at EMA, everyone I have encountered there does their best to help guide and watch out for one another. A result of having experienced teachers who care about their students enough to set this example, every day. An over all attitude which helps to keep me coming back week to week, encouraging my continued growth in this oft times challenging and rewarding Art. I would highly recommend training at EMA for anyone who has ever thought of trying a practical Martial Art form, is trying to get into shape, or just needs a healthy outlet for the
    stresses of life.

    - Mike Searles
  2. It’s fun!


    Empire Martial Arts has been a great experience for me and my family. Originally, I joined the gym to get a work out. What I didn’t expect was through the Empire Martial Arts program I would develop skills that I could apply to other areas of my life. I like how Alan is always sending us emails about how to set goals or why perseverance is important. These help us relate what we are learning in class to our lives outside they gym.

    Each week I look forward to the Muay Thai class because are always learning to focus on new skills and practicing new drills. Alan and his instructors make me feel welcome and always give me the one on one support and encouragement to succeed. Coming here is a great stress relief and best of all, it’s fun!

    - Jody Kelly
  3. Best decision.


    I’ve been training at Empire Marital Arts for approximately 5 years. I came to the gym with minimal martial arts experience, but after training at Empire I have elevated my jiu-jitsu and stand-up fighting skills immensely.

    Training at Empire Martial Arts has given me the skills set necessary to defend and protect myself and my loved ones, and after becoming a police officer, it has provided me with the resources to survive and preserve the lives of the community.

    Alan is a spectacular instructor and conveys cutting-edge martial arts techniques in a friendly and easy to understand manner. The people at Empire are all eager to learn, and are great training partners for everyone is seeking to help better one another. Not only is Alan my esteemed coach, but he is also a great friend. Training and becoming a part of Empire Martial Arts is one of the best decisions I have made.

    - Henda Hsu


    Joining Empire Martial Arts was one of the best things I have done for my family and myself in a long time. After reaching 40, I felt as though I was getting out of shape very quickly and I knew I needed to start some kind of exercise program. I was bored with going to the “regular type” gyms and decided to give it a try. After participating for about a month and occasionally watching the youth classes I realized that both my wife and my daughter could also benefit from the programs at Empire. I’m truly glad I did, now we all attend Empire, we are all getting in great shape, learning self-defense and the best part is that we have another activity that the entire family enjoys and has in common. Not to mention the positive changes in focus, discipline and self-confidence I have noticed in all three of us. I would absolutely recommend Empire Martial Arts to anyone, individual or family, that would like to get into shape in a non-traditional, fun, relaxed atmosphere while gaining all the benefits of learning martial arts. GO TEAM EMPIRE!

    - Brian D. Kelly, Albany, NY
  5. Treated with respect.


    I was tired of running on treadmills at my health club. I was looking for something where I could lose weight and learn something new. I tried a martial art at another studio and although I liked it, the current students hazed all the newcomers until they proved their self worth. Immediately at Empire I was welcomed and treated with respect not just from the instructors but the other students as well.

    - Wendell Brown
  6. Start sooner.

    I have been attending Empire Martial Arts for about 6 months now, and my only regret is not starting sooner.

    - Tim Coffey