Professor Nicolai "Geeza" Holt
Black Belt 3rd Degree
Professor Geeza is the Head Coach of Gracie Barra Bristol. He is proud to be the only Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu instructor teaching in the Bristol area that was promoted to Black Belt by a member of the Gracie family (Roger Gracie). Geeza is currently a Third Degree Black Belt with over 20 years of teaching experience in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. He understands that each student has different goals, different abilities, and different needs. He is happiest when each student grows and develops in their own particular way. Geeza likes to teach the Jiu-Jitsu of his Coach, Master Roger Gracie; he closely follows and teaches the new developments in the sport and he adheres to the legacy passed down through the Gracie Barra curriculum. Besides being an instructor, Geeza has earned many IBJJF titles as a competitor including American National Champion (Brown), multiple time Pan-American (Blue, Purple, Brown), European (Purple, 2x Brown, and Black). He is also a NAGA Champion and a 17-time Grappler’s Quest Champion. He won well over 100 matches by submission before being awarded his black belt (these matches are on YouTube - search for '101 Submissions by Geeza BJJ').
Lineage: Mitsuyo Maeda > Carlos Gracie > Helio Gracie > Carlos Gracie Junior > Roger Gracie > Nicolai Holt
Professor John Bishop
Black Belt 1st Degree
Professor John 'Hippy' Bishop is a Gracie Barra Black Belt and an experienced competitor. He is an authentic and sincere instructor who cares about the progress of his students and is the Head of the Fundamentals Program at Gracie Barra Bristol. He has been training at Gracie Barra Bristol since the school opened and two of his children also came up through the school. Professor John has gone from White Belt to Black Belt at Gracie Barra Bristol.
Lineage: Mitsuyo Maeda > Carlos Gracie > Helio Gracie > Carlos Gracie Junior > Roger Gracie > Nicolai Geeza Holt > John Bishop
Professor Leonard Dos Santos
Professor Leonardo is one of the most well-liked and respected members of the Gracie Barra Bristol family. Prof Leonardo teaches gi and no gi classes and is the head of the no-gi program at Gracie Barra Bristol. He is an active competitor with various titles and has a subtle and deceptive Jiu-Jitsu game that often leaves his opponents unconscious in competition. Professor Leonard has gone from White Belt to Black Belt at Gracie Barra Bristol.
Lineage: Mitsuyo Maeda > Carlos Gracie > Helio Gracie > Carlos Gracie Junior > Roger Gracie > Nicolai Geeza Holt > Leonardo Dos Santos
Professor Mark Russell
Mark is a Gracie Barra Black Belt, and he is the Head of the Morning Class Program at Gracie Barra Bristol (but also trains most evenings). Mark won the 2022 award for Most Dedicated Student at Gracie Barra Bristol. Mark is a kind and caring instructor who takes pride in sharing his knowledge with the students at the school. Coach Mark has gone from White Belt to Black Belt at Gracie Barra Bristol.
Lineage: Mitsuyo Maeda > Carlos Gracie > Helio Gracie > Carlos Gracie Junior > Roger Gracie > Nicolai Geeza Holt > Mark Russell
Rainer is a Gracie Barra Brown Belt, and he teaches the GB1 program at the school. Rainer was in the German Olympics Team as a long jumper and then his passion turned to Jiu Jitsu. Rainer is a highly technical and intelligent grappler. He works as a lecturer at Bristol University and applies his great intellect to Jiu JItsu while he is on the mats at Gracie Barra Bristol. Coach Rainer has gone from White Belt to Brown Belt at Gracie Barra Bristol.
Matt is a Gracie Barra Brown Belt, and he teaches the GB1 program at the school. Matt is a determined and highly flexible grappler. He teaches in the GB1 program and works as an art teacher in a high school. Matt uses his teaching skills and experience to convey difficult concepts to students in an easy-to-absorb format. He is a kind, attentive instructor and is a great communicator. Coach Matt has gone from White Belt to Brown Belt at Gracie Barra Bristol.
Dr. Gregory Clarke
Dr. Greg has been training martial arts for over 30 years. He started training in Karate and earned his black belt in the early 90s. He continued to be an active Karate club member and instructor until he joined Grace Barra Bristol in 2016. He enjoys the “hands-on” approach of BJJ. He teaches the Saturday morning MMA class in which he aims to help Gracie Barra students gain and develop the link between striking and grappling. Greg is a firm believer that training should be fun as there’s more to life than fighting! He has gone from White belt to Brown belt at Gracie Barra Bristol. Coach Greg has gone from White Belt to Brown Belt at Gracie Barra Bristol.
Elizabeth is a Gracie Barra Brown Belt and she teaches on the kids program at the school. Elizabeth is a talented and flexible grappler who started her training on the kids program at the school and has now graduated to become an instructor at the school. She was National Women's Champion at Blue Belt in 2021. Elizabeth has gone from white belt, through the kids belts and up to Adult Brown Belt at the school.