December 18, 2019 will be our last day. TNBJJ is closing. Thanks to everyone for 11 great years!

Our academy focuses on Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. About 70% of the class is spent on BJJ matwork. We spend the remaining 30% of the time on standup Judo. Live positional training, and live sparring in both BJJ and Judo are done in every class.

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (Also known as Gracie Jiu-Jitsu) focuses on ground grappling. It is a discipline where a smaller weaker person can reliably overcome a larger and stronger opponent, through the use of skillful technique. Arm locks, chokes, sweeps and pins are just a few of the things you will learn in your training.

Our Judo training focuses on standup throwing techniques. Proper application of judo throws allow you to take your opponent to the ground. Judo throws include foot sweeps, hip throws, hand throws, and sacrifice throws.

Although BJJ and Judo are competitive sports, it should be recognized that participation in these sports will greatly enhance your ability in self defense situations. Our curriculum was developed to maximize cross-over between gi, no-gi, and self defense. So the vast majority of what you learn can be applied in all of these areas. These sports are also fun and challenging and will improve your physical fitness and mental well being. Although we train hard, we emphasize safety and learning in our school, to minimize injuries, and to maximize progress and enjoyment. Promotions are possible in both BJJ and Judo.


The Tennessee BJJ and Judo Club is led by Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and Judo black belt Dr. Rick Sparks. Rick is a 2 time champion and many time medallist in international level Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu competition in the masters division, and a state and national silver medallist in Judo, also in the masters division. Rick is a BJJ black belt with 3 degrees under World Champion Helio Soneca. He is a 3rd degree Judo black belt under 6x Southeastern Judo Champion Dr. Michael Carter. The Tennessee Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Club and Rick Sparks are certified by the International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation, which is the governing body of the CBJJ. We are also a chartered United States Judo Association Club.

For more information about our classes, please click the green link above entitled "Schedule and Info".

You can learn more about BJJ, Judo, and the TN BJJ and Judo club under the "resources" link. You can learn more about the IBJJF/CBJJ by clicking the shield logo below. You can learn more about Helio Soneca by clicking the HS logo below. To visit the Tennessee BJJ Federation web site, click the logo below. To go to the USJA web site, click the logo below.

Contact Information:

To contact Rick Sparks please e-mail:

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Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu BJJ in Knoxville TN Tennessee