Brandon, Florida-based John Pellegrini is one of the world’s leading authorities on hand-to-hand combat. He recently reached a milestone by celebrating his 40th year of martial arts training. He’s built a track record teaching a wide range of people to defend themselves, including citizens with no training, experienced martial arts school owners and instructors, and police and military personnel. Every month, John Pellegrini travels to different parts of the world to conduct self-defense classes. His schedule is booked more than a year in advance, making him one of the top five seminar instructors on the planet. He’s graced the cover of numerous martial arts publications, including Black Belt in June 2003. The system John Pellegrini teaches uses no gimmicks, fancy kicks or jumping techniques. It doesn’t pretend to prepare students to win tournaments; it merely conveys quality combat methods that are easy to understand and implement. Anyone who takes a John Pellegrini seminar leaves satisfied, and most end up enlisting for another class when he’s in town. People who read about him in magazines are motivated to learn from him in person. The reason for their loyalty is simple: All these martial artists are confident that the tactics and strategies John Pellegrini teaches will work and that they could actually use them in an emergency. The martial art John Pellegrini created, combat hapkido, has a worldwide reputation as a simple, effective self-defense system. It evolved over many years of research and development. John Pellegrini began training in judo in Italy in 1964, then got involved in special-forces hand-to-hand combat training and counterintelligence self-defense with NATO forces in 1968 and 1969. While living in New York City in 1973, he started karate. He went on to train in taekwondo (in which he earned a ninth-degree black belt) and hapkido and to obtain instructor-level rank in jeet kune do and aikido. He opened a martial arts academy in the mid-1980s, then founded combat hapkido in 1990. The hybrid Korean art is taught at more than 250 schools in a dozen countries. John Pellegrini’s International Combat Hapkido Federation boasts approximately 5,000 members. In addition to his flagship organization, John Pellegrini founded the Independent Taekwondo Association, the International Police Defensive Tactics Institute, Self Defense America and the World Martial Arts Alliance. In 2003 he created Defense Arts Inc. to manage and administrate those organizations. In April 2004 John Pellegrini, who’s also certified by the World Taekwondo Federation and Kukkiwon, made history when the World Ki-Do Federation in Pusan, South Korea, promoted him to ninth-degree black belt. He’s reportedly the first American ever to rise to such an advanced rank within the Korean organization. In recognition of his outstanding service to the martial arts community and dedication to students of self-defense around the world, Black Belt is honored to induct John Pellegrini into its 2004 Hall of Fame as Instructor of the Year. (This profile originally appeared in the November 2005 issue of Black Belt.)

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The UFC returned to American network television for the first time in more than two years Saturday on ABC while former featherweight champion Max Holloway returned to his winning ways following two straight losses, earning a unanimous decision over Calvin Kattar in Abu Dhabi. Holloway showed he still has plenty left as a fighter dominating Kattar from the opening bell of the main event with a mix of punches and low kicks.

It appeared as if the former champion might stop his opponent in the fourth round landing a series of vicious body blows followed by hard elbows to the head as a bloodied Kattar sagged against the fence. But Kattar somehow survived managing to keep himself upright through the fifth stanza as well, only to lose a lopsided decision. After dropping his title to Alexander Volkanovski and then losing a controversial rematch, Holloway may have put himself in position for one more crack at the championship following Saturday's impressive performance.

The Legendary Black Belt Magazine Hall of Fame has never before been documented in a single location. Now, you can learn about all the icons that have achieved one of the greatest honors in all of martial arts.

Black Belt Magazine is proud to announce the NEW Member Profiles feature for the Hall of Fame. At the time of this article, the online records account for every inductee from the inaugural year of 1968 all the way through 1990 (upwards of 200 martial artists). The page will be updated continuously and will include every inductee through 2020 in the near future. For now, you can enjoy images and facts about the legendary members for each induction they received before 1991. Take advantage of this never-before-seen opportunity to learn about many of the martial artists who contributed to the lifestyle, culture, and community that every martial artist experiences today.

CLICK HERE TO VIEW THE BLACK BELT HALL OF FAME

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ONE Championship kicked off their 2021 campaign in Singapore on Friday, January 22, with ONE: Unbreakable.

The six-bout card featured five finishes including in the main event as Capitan Petchyindee Academy ousted Alaverdi Ramazanov for the ONE Bantamweight Kickboxing World Championship.

See how all of the action went down in The Lion City with this recap of ONE: Unbreakable.

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These three simple ways will make you more flexible instantly!

Fighters need to have an optimal amount of flexibility to kick, punch, takedown their opponent and even to escape submission holds. Your body has to be able to move through ranges of motion effectively, and that requires your muscles to stretch and contract functionally. In order to create flexibility, you have to wrap your mind around that it is more than just stretching a muscle.

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