All our Instructors have at least 10 years of grappling experience

Matt Kuris

Head Instructor | BJJ BLACK BELT

Matt has been training in combat sports since 1999 and started his martial arts training with Boxing and Muay Thai, then progressed to mma and submission wrestling. In 2004 he took his first Brazilian jiu jitsu class and over the next few years decided to dedicate himself to the sport. Matt has started many bjj programs around the city but is best known for being co-founder and one of the head coaches of Grapple Lab bjj. In January 2018, he achieved the rank of bjj black belt by his original Prof. Cesar Rezek to whom he owes much of his knowledge.

Lineage: Mitsuyo Maeda > Carlos Gracie > Carlson Gracie > André Pederneiras > Cesar Rezek Alves

Mani J.

Head Instructor | BJJ BLACK BELT

Mani has over 15 years martial arts experience. Originally a striking enthusiast, Mani began his journey with Jeet Kune Do, and subsequently Muay Thai, which he trained for 6 years. Mani then trained under the tutelage of Cesar Rezek Alves, from whom he was awarded his black belt. Mani is one of the head instructors and co-owner of Grapple Lab Bjj. 

Lineage: Mitsuyo Maeda > Carlos Gracie > Carlson Gracie > André Pederneiras > Cesar Rezek Alves

Dave Menceles


Dave’s practical and accessible approach to both learning and teaching focuses on helping students to continuously improve their understanding of jiu-jitsu concepts, over memorizing specific technique sequences. As co-Founder of Jits Magazine, Dave is fluent in Brazilian Portuguese and has spent more than 2 years training in Brazil.

Lineage: Mitsuyo Maeda > Carlos Gracie > Carlson Gracie > André Pederneiras > Cesar Rezek Alves > Matt Soroka > Mani J. / Matt Kuris

Saaz Mariani


Saaz has been involved with martial arts since the early 2000’s but once he found Brazilian Jiu Jitsu in 2011, he never left. Saaz is a former Toronto Athlete of the Year, multi Wrestling City Champion, and has  experience competing in both gi and nogi at all his previous belt levels.

He sustained a significant knee injury in 2018 but was able to use BJJ to aid in his recovery and stay motivated to keep learning. Saaz is also passionate about several other sports during his free time; he is always looking to share the joy of athleticism with others.

Lineage: Mitsuyo Maeda > Carlos Gracie > Helio Gracie > Alvaro Barreto > Sylvio Behring > Jesse Richardson > Joe De Los Reyes > Cesar Rezek Alves > Mani J. / Matt Kuris

Tony Toffolo


Tony, a former basketball player, began his jiu-jitsu journey in 2009 and quickly immersed himself in the art. He trains and teaches with a practical perspective and the goal of efficiency at the forefront, he also enjoys keeping up with the sport’s new and developing techniques to further his own learning. Off the mats Tony likes to get creative through varied photography and video projects.

Lineage: Mitsuyo Maeda > Luiz França > Oswaldo Fadda > Sebastião Ricardo > Wendell Alexander > Chris Wellstood / Leo Santos > Mani J. / Matt Kuris

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