Head instructor Seph Smith has been training in the martial arts since February 2001 and has the distinction of being the first person ever promoted to Black Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu by Ryan Hall. An accomplished competitor at the local, regional, and national level with considerable tournament experience in Jiu-Jitsu and submission grappling, Seph has also competed successfully in Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) where he held a regional title belt in the WKA organization. Seph is a 2011 IBJJF Pan American Silver Medalist (brown belt Masters division) and a NAGA Superfight Champion in addition to many, many titles at the Advanced No-Gi level in regional tournaments. For the past few years, he has completely dominated the local circuit, going undefeated in dozens of matches.
More than just a competitor, though, Seph brings with him to the Upstream BJJ Academy extensive experience and knowledge of coaching, personal training, and curriculum design. Seph specializes in fostering a friendly environment based on positive reinforcement and fostering a strong work ethic that is welcoming to people of all athletic backgrounds. He is a passionate instructor who prides himself on being able to help his students build confidence in themselves and their skills as they reach their fitness and martial arts goals, whatever they may be.
Some of Seph’s Accomplishments Include:
2012 Montreal Fight for Charity Superfight Champion
2011 IBJJF Pan American Championship Masters Brown Belt Silver Medalist
2011 UFC Fan Expo Toronto Brown Belt Absolute Champion
2009 NAGA Superfight Champion
2009 The Good Fight: “Dogfight In Dover” Pro Lightweight Champion
Former WKA East Coast Regional Amateur Mixed Martial Arts Title Holder
Multiple time Beltsville Judo Champion
Referee For Multiple Grappling Tournament Circuits (Grapplers Quest, US Grappling, et al)