OUR COACHING TEAM

Where the Passion Begins

ALL MAKOTO KAI JUDO INSTRUCTORS HAVE:

  • CLEARED BACKGROUND INVESTIGATION EVERY 2 YEARS

  • PASSED USOC SAFE SPORT CERTIFICATION EVERY 2 YEARS

  • PASSED CDC "HEADS UP" CONCUSSION TRAINING EVERY 2 YEARS

  • LIABILITY INSURANCE COVERAGE BY UNITED STATES JUDO ASSOCIATION

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MATTHEW VANDER HORCK

Head Instructor

Sensei Matthew Vander Horck is a 4th degree black belt in Judo and a USJA National Coach.  He holds coaching, refereeing, and rank credentials in USJA, USJF, and USA Judo.  

 

Prior to becoming the Head Instructor of Makoto Kai Judo Dojo, he was an Assistant Instructor, and later the Head Instructor, of Ogden Judo School.  He has been practicing Judo for 40 years and has been teaching and coaching Judo for the past 9 years.  He wrestled in High School and also holds rank in Aikido and Jiu Jitsu.  Sensei Vander Horck is currently a Captain on the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department.

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RICHARD "BLINKY" ELIZALDE

Competition Coach Advisor

Sensei Blinky is a 5th degree black belt in Judo.  As a competitor he medaled in the U.S. National Championships and was chosen twice as an Olympic alternate.  He is most recognized for his coaching achievements, having coached World Champion Ann Marie Burns and Olympic Bronze Medalist Ronda Rousey.  He has coached over 15 International Champions and over 50 U.S. Junior and Senior Champions and was the Head Judo Instructor at UCLA.

Makoto Kai Judo Dojo is very fortunate to have Sensei Blinky as a competition advisor.  He has been coaching our Competition Team for the past four years on Friday nights.

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JASSEN ANDRUS

Assistant Instructor

Sensei Jassen Andrus is a 2nd degree black belt in Judo and has been practicing the art and sport for many years.  He is a USJA Certified Judo Coach.  Sensei Andrus was fortunate to practice Judo in Japan and Okinawa while serving in the United States Marine Corps.  He is a lifelong competitor who has recently made the transition to coach.  

MATTHEW EVERETT

Assistant Instructor

Sensei Matthew Everett is a first degree black belt in Judo and has been practicing the art and sport for the last 13 years.  He is a USJA Certified Judo Coach and one of the club's best technical instructors.

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Daniel Bermudez Jr.

Assistant Coach

Sensei Daniel Bermudez is a first degree black belt in Judo and also holds the rank of purple belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.  He is an avid competitor and has competed in Judo, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, and MMA.

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RAIDEN VANDER HORCK

Juniors Coach

Coach Raiden has been and continues to be a hard working Judo competitor and now Juniors Coach.  He holds the rank of Ikkyu and effortlessly bridges the gap between the other coaches and the Junior Students.  Coach Raiden is a USJA Certified Coach.

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CHRIS DERRICK

Assistant Coach

Sensei Chris Derrick is a 2nd degree black belt in Judo and also holds the rank of brown belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.  He was a member of the Ohio State Judo Team, while attending the university as a student.  Sensei Derrick also wrestled in high school.  

Sensei Derrick has an extensive grappling pedigree and brings a fresh perspective and teaching approach to Makoto Kai Judo Dojo.

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BRANDON GONZALEZ

Assistant Coach

Sensei Brandon Gonzalez is 2nd degree black belt in Judo.  He has been with Makoto Kai Dojo from the very beginning.  After many years of experience competing and coaching Judo, with Ogden Judo School, we are thrilled to have his expertise as an Assistant Coach.

 

Sensei Gonzalez hasn't hung up his competition gi just yet.  He still competes in Judo and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ) and holds the rank of Purple Belt in BJJ.