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Posted on 30, Aug | Posted by Pit Vegas Administrator

How do I start at The Pit Vegas?

There are several ways to begin your training. It all depends on several factors: your fitness level, experience, what exactly you want to get out of training, etc etc. See below for a number of options and choose what’s best for you!

1. Please fill out a digital waiver HERE before attending class. All those under 18 must have a parent sign.

2. If you’re already in good shape and/or have martial arts experience, then you can try 1 class for free.

  • Adults/teens can try CrossPit or Pit Yoga
  • Kids ages 3-6 can try a Pee Wee class
  • Kids ages 7-9 can try a Pit Kids B class
  • Kids ages 10-14 can try a Pit Kids A class
  • You can try Hawaiian Kempo and Pit Jitsu only AFTER trying CrossPit first; talk to a Pit Instructor after your trial class to discuss further

Must contact us and RSVP a class time prior to attending. No unannounced drop ins accepted.

3. If you want personal attention you can sign up for Private Lessons with a Pit Vegas instructor.

4.Please fill out the appropriate questionnaire below:

5. Upon completion of the questionnaires, A Pit Vegas staff member will be in touch with you to set up your first class!

 

 

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Eliana Aguilar is The Student of The Month!

Posted on 30, Jul | Posted by Pit Vegas Administrator

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Eliana is one of our star Pit Kids! She just earned her 2nd degree Yellowbelt and always works hard in class. Eliana leads by example, never complaining, whining, or giving anything less than 100% effort. Congrats Eliana and thank you for leading by quiet example for all the other Pit Monsters to follow!

 

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The Pit Vegas Instructors

Posted on 30, Jul | Posted by Pit Vegas Administrator

John “The Pitmaster” Hackleman

Grandmaster John Hackleman is the founder of Hawaiian Kempo school, “The Pit” and is a 10th degree blackbelt. He has been studying martial arts for over 30 years, and holds two black belts. In addition, John has fought on the US Army boxing team, where he won numerous National titles. After turning professional, John fought the world’s best boxers and kickboxers winning many State, National, and World titles.

John has trained thousands of people into the best shape of their lives as well as  coaching many of the world’s best fighters, including former UFC Hall of Famer Chuck Liddell, Antonio Banuelos, Ramsey Nijem, Steven Siler, Glover Texeira and The Ultimate Fighter winner Court McGee. John is sought out by professional martial artists from all over the world.

John continually evolves and incorporates only the most effective training and fitness methods into his curriculum.  The Pit grows everyday, with branches throughout California and Nevada, in addition to the numerous Pit affiliates nationwide. On occasion he will pay The Pit Vegas a surprise visit and teach classes.

 

Eric Umali 

Eric Umali

Eric Umali began his martial arts career at age nine in Isshinryu Karate.  He attained the rank of 3rd degree blackbelt in addition to working as one of his dojo’s top instructors.   Eric also was an active competitor in statewide Sport Karate tournaments where he excelled at kata and point sparring, garnering many top finishes in over 10 years of active competition.

Over a decade ago, Eric was introduced to John Hackleman to teach The Pit’s kids program, which was new at the time.  Eric helped The Pit HQ grow, working as Kumu (Hawaiian for “teacher”) John’s Chief Instructor where he taught men, women, and children in group and private settings.  Along the way, Eric trained in Hawaiian Kempo and attained a Pit Blackbelt; enduring a rigorous belt testing in Hawaii under Kumu John and Pit Blackbelts Rick Metzler and Chuck Liddell.

Eric is currently a 3rd Degree Pit Blackbelt where he continues to learn and grow. He has competed in a handful of regional grappling tournaments and MMA smokers. Eric enjoys  keeping fit by training his students to compete in grappling competitions, amateur kickboxing fights, and MMA bouts.  In addition to his day to day duties overseeing The Pit Vegas, Eric is always looking to grow The Pit brand.

Steven Llamas

Steve LLamas

Steve hails from Texas where he earned a blue belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and a blue belt in Yoseikan Aikido. During his studies at Baylor University, Steve was an instructor for his campus’ Self Defense course. In addition to training with notables Relson Gracie, Daniel Moraes, and Scott Epstein, Steven continues to hone his skills in grappling and striking competitions. Steve is a dedicated member of our Hawaiian Kempo class and holds the rank of 2nd Degree Blue Belt.

 

Nick Paladeni

Nick Paladeni

Nick Paladeni was the very first student of The Pit Vegas.  Before his time at The Pit,  Nick was a lifelong scholar (attended MIT) and collegiate athlete where he played tennis at the University of Oregon.  Nick is a member of our Hawaiian Kempo class where he holds the rank of Green Belt.  He has trained at The Pit Headquarters under John Hackleman in California as well as with the amateur fighters at The Pit Elevated in Utah. Initially coming to The Pit Vegas out of shape and with a litany of health problems, Nick has improved his fitness dramatically and is one of the most loyal and hardworking members of the Ohana. Nick is an avid competitor, completing various fun runs, Half Marathons, Spartan Race, Tough Mudder, Bad Ass Dash, as well as the Red Rock Canyon Full Marathon.

 

Kim Robinson

 

Kim has been training non stop with us for over a year in our CrossPit program. While always lean, Kim has improved her overall strength, cardio, and coordination. Her technique improves constantly and she has shown great fighting heart sparring with other girls in two of our “Girls Can Fight,” fight nights. A lifelong Henderson resident, Kim’s bubbly personality is infectious. She continues to grow and was recently CrossPit Certified under John Hackleman directly.

Kelly Meyers

Kelly Meyers

Kelly Meyers teaches Pit Yoga and is a Certified CrossPit Instructor. She has been training with us for over a year and placed 3rd in The Pit World Kumite. Her classes are always upbeat and her enthusiasm is infectious. In addition, Kelly is also a licensed massage therapist. Check out her website here to book a great massage.

 

Scott Seelinger

Scott is a Purple Belt in our Hawaiian Kempo class and is one of our top CrossPIT instructors. He shows great attention to detail as he enthusiastically helps each student during class. Scott recently was CrossPit Certified by John Hackleman and he continues to constantly improve his game – whether it be sparring, grappling, or devising unique workouts. One of the first Pit Vegas students with his daughter Morgan and wife Katie, we are proud to always have Scott teaching and helping the Ohana.

Wyatt Morgan

Wyatt is one of our top Hawaiian Kempo students and holds the rank of Green Belt. When he’s not assisting with the children’s classes he helps make everyone better with his always improving jiu jitsu and sparring skills. He wrestled Varsity for Foothill High School where he was Champion of the Southern Nevada District. He has won the Teen Middleweight Title at the National Kickboxing Circuit’s Championships and won 1st and 2nd at FightBlok’s Grappling tournaments. Wyatt recently won his first MMA fight at King of the Cage via 1st round TKO.

Other Instructors (more info coming soon)

Jeremy Taylor

Jeremy Taylor

Jesse Leeb 

Jesse Leeb

 

Josie Blackwell 

Josie Blackwell

Kaipo Dumaran

Kaipo Dumaran

 

 

 

 

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Frequently Asked Questions

Posted on 30, Jul | Posted by Pit Vegas Administrator

I want to fight! Do you have a fight team?

No, not officially. We are not a “fight gym.” We have several students who compete (grappling, amateur MMA fights, etc) but they are special cases. If you want to pursue a career in fighting then click HERE and best of luck!

Is Chuck “The Iceman” Liddell there?

No, he’s in California…enjoying the sun and mild weather, probably drinking an iced tea.

Does John “The Pit Master” Hackleman teach there?

Not regularly and when he is in town he may teach a few classes depending on his schedule.

I want to roll! Do you guys teach jiu jitsu?

We are not a brazilian jiu jitsu school, though we do train No-Gi grappling on Tuesdays (mainly technique) and Fridays (free roll). Fridays are invite only. If you are looking for gi jiu jitsu or to become a high level jiu jitsu player and win IBJJF, NAGA, etc…click here!

What is CrossPIT and is it like Crossfit?

Simply, CrossPIT is very similar to crossfit except:

  1. No traditional olympic lifting
  2. Less emphasis on the competitive aspect of workouts
  3. Striking heavy bags in longer periods of cardio

 

We actually share the gym with our partners Sin City Crossfit, though we’re two totally separate businesses. Check them out   if you want to get in a great crossfit workout!

Do I need to get in shape first to workout?

No! Jump right into a CrossPit class and if the only thing you can do is the warm up, that’s fine. You need to start somewhere! If you are really hesitant then we offer private lessons as well.

 

Other questions? Contact us today by clicking here!

 

 

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WAKO USA National Kickboxing Championships!

Posted on 30, Jul | Posted by Pit Vegas Administrator

A handful of Pit Monsters competed at the WAKO USA National Kickboxing Championships held at the Mr. Olympia Expo, September 19th and 20th, 2014!

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Josie Blackwell, Jesse Reynosa, David Lane, and Wyatt Morgan all fought their hearts out against tough competition. WAKO is the biggest kickboxing organization in the world and this was their first US tournament.

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Everyone overcame a lot of obstacles but each performed with HEART and fighting spirit, win or lose.

  • Jesse was incorrectly scheduled to fight Friday instead of Saturday so he made a u-turn, got his gear and battled against a tough ex-college football player coached by the Team USA Kickboxing Head Coach.
  • This was Josie’s first martial arts competition of any sort…and to think she was only in PIT KIDS a few years ago. She had a tough match against a skilled girl who hailed from the same academy of WAKO USA’s President.
  • Wyatt had his nose busted open in the first minutes of BOTH fights…but earned a tough victory in his preliminary match before losing a close fight in the championship.
  • David’s fight was pushed to Saturday and then was told his opponent pulled out just an hour before their bout. Two replacements refused to fight so David wasn’t expecting to compete. Then they found him a fight against a tough guy who had a 4-1 record…to which David accepted and had a tough battle, barely 10 minutes later.

These are not excuses, rather, a display of the mental strength and heart that our Pit Monsters possess. We are not a fight gym, we did not specifically train for this competition outside of our regular classes. They wanted to fight…so they fought, plain and simple.

Congrats to Wyatt, Jesse, Josie, and David for putting on great performances. They are all true martial artists and we are proud to have them representing THE PIT!

 

 

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Brian Pompa is The Student of the Month!

Posted on 30, Jul | Posted by Pit Vegas Administrator

Brian Pompa

Brian Pompa has been with the Pit Vegas for nearly our entire 3.5 year existence. He actually contacted us about our Pit Kids program before we even had an octagon set up. Nearly a year later he signed up his son Gage – who progressed from our Pee Wee class into Pit Kids where he became a Student of the Month himself!

Brian finally started doing CrossPIT over a year ago and has moved up into our Hawaiian Kempo class where he is on his way to yellow belt. Brian, Gage, and now his youngest son Cross all train with us now!

He is a huge guy but is a great partner to work with when he could be smashing people with his size. Brian embodies what The Pit is all about: hardwork, heart, selflessness, and Ohana. Congrats Brian!

 

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Pit Vegas Kids Kumite wrap up

Posted on 30, Jul | Posted by Pit Vegas Administrator

Pit Vegas Kids Kumite

Pit Vegas Kids Kumite

Pit Vegas Kids Kumite

The first ever Pit Vegas Kids Kumite took place March 29, 2014 and was a big success! The event was a spirited yet competitive inner school tournament consisting of our Pit Pee Wee and Pit Kids students.

Yana Wilson warming up

Yana Wilson warming up

The children competed in three events. A CrossPit workout, an obstacle course, and numerous submission only no-gi grappling matches. There were several medalists in each division but there could only be one grand champion, “The Ultimate Pit Monster.”

Check out the awesome pictures courtesy of Olga Wilson and then see the list of winners!

Kumu Eric, Scott, and Steve prepping the competitors.

Kumu Eric, Scott, and Steve prepping the competitors.

Daniel, Seth, and Connor keeping lose before the start of the first heat

Daniel, Seth, and Connor keeping loose before the start of the first heat

 

 

Jake had some tough grappling matches

Jake had some tough grappling matches

Yana looking for the trip

Yana looking for the trip

Yana during the Obstacle Course

Yana during the Obstacle Course

Morgan during CrossPit

Morgan during CrossPit

Joel with his 1st place medal

Joel with his 1st place medal

James and Jack grappling

James and Jack grappling

Seth warming up with Connor

Seth warming up with Connor

Flynn and his first place win

Flynn and his first place win

 

Pit Vegas Kids Kumite results

Pit Vegas Kids Kumite results

 

Moriah Duvall is the Ultimate Pit Monster!!

Moriah Duvall is the Ultimate Pit Monster!!

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All kids did awesome and while not everyone got a medal – we are proud they showed the courage to compete. Thanks to Alex, Scott, Steve, Michael, and all the other volunteers who helped make this a smooth running and positive event. Until the Pit Vegas Kids Kumite 2!

 

 

 

 

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Moriah Duvall is The Student of the Month!

Posted on 30, Jul | Posted by Pit Vegas Administrator

Moriah Duvall

Moriah Duvall

 

Moriah has been training with us for about six months. She has great attendance and is always well behaved during class. She’s also an honor student and will one day be the President of the United States of America…whether she likes it or not.

In addition to showing great technique and maturity for a nine year old, Moriah is a second degree yellow belt and one of the few Pit Kids invited to sparring night.

Congrats to Moriah and when you are the President of the United States of America always remember the little people here at The Pit Vegas.
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Alberto Gomez is The Student of the Month!

Posted on 30, Jul | Posted by Pit Vegas Administrator

Alberto Gomez is The Pit Vegas' Student of The Month for February 2014!

Alberto Gomez is The Pit Vegas’ Student of The Month for February 2014!

Alberto has come a long way in just over 6 months of training with us. He placed 2nd in our CrossPit Challenge, competed in our Stun Run and Gun, comes to CrossPit classes, Pit Jitsu, sparring, and Hawaiian Kempo…where he recently was awarded his yellow belt.

When he’s not putting in time at The Pit Vegas, Alberto works, DJ’s, and supports his family…where his two beautiful twin daughters Vanessa and Giselle (whom Kumu Eric can NEVER tell apart) are in Pit Pee Wee and got their yellow belts also!

Congrats to Alberto and his insane work ethic. Now keep those little girls single FOREVER!

 

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Pit Vegas Kids Kumite!

Posted on 30, Jul | Posted by Pit Vegas Administrator

Pit Vegas Kids Kumite poster

Pit Vegas Kids Kumite poster

Who?

Pit Vegas Kids Kumite is an in house tournament consisting of just our own Pit Pee Wee and Pit Kids students.

What?

The Kumite will be broken down into 5 Divisions:

Pee Wee Fly = shorter, smaller 
Pee Wee Bantam = taller, heavier
Pit Kids Feather = shorter, smaller
Pit Kids Light = taller, heavier 
Pit Kids Welter = tallest, heaviest

We will separate the children as closest as possible taking into account weight and skill level. Weight is the biggest factor but if a lighter child is more skilled we will put them with the bigger kids. All in all, it will be subjected to our Kumus’ discretion as to which division  kids will be placed in…but all efforts will be made to keep it as fair as possible.

When?

Saturday March 29th

Check in 9am (MUST register online first!)

Parents and rules meeting 10am

First heat starts 10:30am

Where?

The Pit Vegas

Why?

To promote spirited competition in a friendly and safe environment amongst Pit Vegas students. No bad sportsmanship will be tolerated from the children, their parents, or any spectators.

How?

Kids will compete in 3 events:

  • Mini CrossPIT workout for reps
  • Indoor obstacle course for time
  • Grappling for submission

**Pee Wees will have (3) 2 min matches. Pit Kids will have (3) 3 min matches. 

**Best record out of the 3 matches determines the winner of each division. Divisions subject to more/less matches based on actual amount of competitors.

**if no submission in allotted time, the Kumu will decide the winner based on technique and controlled aggression.

There will be trophies for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place finishers in each event. The competitor with the best overall showing in all three of the events will be awarded the Grand Championship Title of “The Ultimate Pit Monster!”

 

Register your child now

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