Sean Apperson is the head Jiu Jitsu instructor at Paragon Santa Barbara and has been involved with the grappling arts most of his life. Starting out in club wrestling in Northern California Sean found an early love for the grappling arts. In 2001 Sean began his training at the famous Paragon Jiu Jitsu club in Santa Barbara under Ricardo "Franjinha" Miller. Sean spent several years in LA training with Renzo Gracie Black belt Shawn Williams and 1987 NCAA Champ Rico Chiapparelli. In 2004 Sean finished his studies at UCLA and moved back to Santa Barbara to complete his training where it all started. In the winter of 2009 Sean received his black belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Sean is currently working on his Black belt in Judo and training under Steve Hoyt at the Santa Barbara Judo club.
Paragon Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Founder
Ricardo "Franjinha" Miller has being teaching and competing for the last 15 years with many titles in regional, national and international competitions. With his black belt, Ricardo set for himself challenges extending beyond Brazil. In 1996 he came to the United States to compete and to teach. He proved to be successful at both. With American partner Mike Florimbi, the Paragon Academy of Martial Arts was founded in 1998 in Santa Barbara. Under Ricardo’s hands-on direction as coach and fighter, Paragon Santa Barbara has become a powerhouse for Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu instruction in California. Ricardo and competitor-level students have dominated in regional, state, and international tournaments. In addition, Paragon has become a community force for recreational Jiu-Jitsu, a resource for law enforcement, and developer of ongoing physical training and self-defense programs for young people, adults, seniors, and women. With the success of the Santa Barbara school, "Franjinha" opened a Ventura location as well as affiliate schools in Lompoc and Santa Maria.
Jiu-Jitsu and Wrestling Instructor
Adam benShea is a native of Santa Barbara. He has consistently trained under Franjinha since 2000. In June 2006 Adam received his black belt. He has a long history in competitive grappling. Some of his more notable accomplishments were winning the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu California State, Pan American, and World Championships. These days he is more focused on teaching and coaching BJJ. Aside from BJJ he also has a background in wrestling and Judo. He graduated from UC Santa Barbara and recently completed his MA in Middle Eastern Studies from Indiana University.
Milton Bastos is a multiple time World Champion in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and has a stong freestyle wrestling background. Born in Sao Paulo Brazil, Milton moved to the US in 2010 and is teaching Jiu Jitsu in Hollywood and Ventura Califonia. Milton is a very detailed instructor and can break down complex moves making them look easy.
Jiu-Jitsu and Wrestling Instructor
Juris Doctor Candidate 2009, University of Colorado Law School. Tyrone is one of the founding members and is Ricardo's first student to be promoted to Black Belt. Tyrone has won high level Jiu Jitsu tournaments and is a perfect 6-0 in mixed martial arts competition. Tyrone is an excellent instructor and his impact on the Paragon team can still be felt by anyone associated.
Jeff Glover is one of the most decorated American grapplers winning the 2007 World NoGI title and taking 3rd in the prestigious ADCC in 2011. Jeff’s innovative grappling style and deep half guard have made him an extremely popular Jiu-Jitsu player and teacher. Jeff is a black belt under Ricardo “Franjinha” Miller and a member of the Paragon Jiu-Jitsu Club.
Sean Patrick Flanery has been a fixture on most peoples television sets for more than 20 years now. He can be seen utilizing his martial arts skills in over 50 different feature films and 3 different television series. He utilizes Muay Thai in episodes of “The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles”, Judo in “The Boondock Saints”, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu in both “The Dead Zone” and “Deadly Impact” (with Joey Pantolioni), and even performing touchless knockouts with the use of CHI in “Powder”!! He began training martial arts at the age of nine and continued with various disciplines all the way through college. Upon discovering Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, however, he gave up all the other arts and never looked back. Sean began his endeavor to achieve a black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu by spending his first three years under the tutelage of Rickson Gracie at the Rickson Gracie Jiu Jitsu Academy in Los Angeles. During the summer of ’03 Sean took time off from his busy shooting schedule to train and compete on the national level with some very good results. He then sought out and trained under the top instructors at the famed Renzo Gracie Jiu-Jitsu Academy in Manhattan, and on May 4th of 2008, Sean received his black belt, the first ever awarded by Renzo’s own Professor S. Williams. Sean opened Hollywood Brazilian Jiu Jitsu in Los Angeles almost 10 years ago, and can be found right there in Hollywood, both teaching and training day in and day out. Sean’s true passion and love for Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is no secret, and can be seen on both the screen and the mat… and in every single lesson he teaches.