Grandmaster Ralph BergamoCo-FounderRead BioEmail
Grandmaster Ralph BergamoCo-Founder
Grand Master Bergamo started his Martial Arts career in 1970 under Grand Master Rossi in the “Brooklyn” section of Waterbury, CT. The “Hard” style of Kun Tao was the only style that was taught, and many of Grand Master Bergamo’s fellow students never made it to the Black Belt level. Grand Master Bergamo also trained in the art of Tai Chi Quan and Ta Chi Quan Sword under Grand Master Chun-fang He, in 1990.
In the late 90’s GM Bergamo formed a team, Team Bergamo, made up of Black Belts and upper ranks from his studio. They competed extensively in all aspects of martial arts, in particular Breaking, an area that they excelled in. They won many National, International, and World Championships and performed numerous live demonstrations at events across the USA and abroad. They were also featured on ESPN2, Discovery Channel, Late Night with David Lettermen, and more. At one point the team was sponsored by Schick Quatro razors.
Some of GM Bergamo’s personal accomplishments include:
- World Record on ESPN2 US Open of Martial Arts with 6 coconuts broken with a chop in 10 seconds.
- Featured on the Discovery Channel series Time Warp.
- World Record on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno Show with 9 coconuts broken with a chop in 20 seconds.
- 2nd place Black Belt Lightweight Power Breaking (concrete) at the Martial Arts World Games III, Columbus, OH.
GM Bergamo is the owner and head instructor of Bergamo’s Family Martial Arts and owner and lead trainer at Bergamo’s Personal Training and Wellness in Cheshire, CT. He is also a founding member of the American Filipino Kun Tao Federation. Visit his website at http://bergamomartialarts.com .
Senior Master Drew SerranoCo-FounderRead BioEmail
Senior Master Drew SerranoCo-Founder
Senior Master Drew Serrano started his Martial Arts career in 1977 in Judo. He later started training in Tang Soo Do/Moo Duk Kwon under Master Robert Dunlap. In the mid 80’s he joined Rossi Academy of Self Defense in Waterbury, CT under Grandmaster Joseph Rossi and has been a practitioner of American Filipino Kun Tao ever since. Rossi Academy later changed to Modern Self Defense Center under Master Michael Byrnes and SM Serrano would take over studio operations in the early 90’s. He continued to run the studio at various locations until 1998 when he joined Bergamo’s Martial Arts and helped form Team Bergamo. In 2007 he left Bergamo’s to further his already established business East Coast Training Systems with his wife Daniele.
Some of Senior Master Serrano’s personal accomplishments include:
- USBA/WBA and ISKA North American Champion- Heavyweight Power Concrete Breaking- USBA/WBA and ISKA North American Breaking Championships, Wallingford, CT- 2017
- USBA/WBA European Breaking Champion- Heavyweight Power Wood Foot- World Power Show, London, England- 2016
- USBA/WBA European Breaking Champion- Heavyweight Power Concrete Foot- World Power Show, London, England- 2016
- USBA/WBA European Breaking Champion- Heavyweight Power Concrete Elbow- World Power Show, London, England- 2016
- USBA/WBA European Breaking Champion- Heavyweight Power Concrete Hand- World Power Show, London, England- 2016
- ISKA World Champion- Heavyweight Power Concrete Breaking- US Open World Martial Arts Championships, Orlando, FL- 2016
- USBA/WBA and ISKA North American Champion- Heavyweight Power Concrete Breaking- USBA/WBA and ISKA North American Breaking Championships, Wallingford, CT- 2016
- USBA/WBA and ISKA North American Champion- Heavyweight Power Concrete Breaking- USBA/WBA and ISKA North American Breaking Championships, Fairfield, CT- 2015
- World Record- Most Concrete Patio Blocks broken in 10 seconds with three strikes (hand, elbow, foot)- 34 blocks- 2014
- World Champion- 3 Directional Power Wood Hand- US Open World Martial Arts Championships, Orlando, FL- 2014
- Appointed to the Board of Directors for the International Independent Martial Artists Association- 2010
- Appointed Breaking Coach for the United States Martial Arts Team- 2010
- Featured on Discovery Channel’s “Time Warp”- 2008
- Featured on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno- 2007
- Featured act at Beacher’s Madhouse variety show- Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, NV- 2006
- Named International Breaking Director for ATERU Worldwide Association- 2006
- Named International Breaking Director for The Arnold Martial Arts World Games, OH- 2004
- Featured on ESPN2 during the airing of The US Open World Martial Arts Championships
- Featured on the Discovery Channel special “Extreme Martial Arts”- 2003
- Grand Champion BB Heavyweight Power Breaking- Martial Arts World Games III, Columbus, OH- 2003
- 1st place Black Belt Creative Breaking- Martial Arts World Games III, Columbus, OH- 2003
- 1st place Black Belt Self-Defense- Empire State Nationals, NY- 2000
- 1st place Black Belt Creative Power Breaking- Compete Nationals 2000, CA- 2000
- World Champion- Creative Power Breaking- USA International Championships, Las Vegas, NV- 2000
Together with his Wife Daniele, SM Serrano operates a successful studio in Waterbury, CT- http://www.eastcoasttrainingsystems.net . They also are the creators of the leading women’s self defense program in CT, Escape Alive Survival Skills- http://www.escapealive.org. He is also a founding member of the American Filipino Kun Tao Federation.
Master Adam GroginDirector of Operations, Northeastern Regional Circuit DirectorRead BioEmail
Master Adam GroginDirector of Operations, Northeastern Regional Circuit Director
Master Grogin started training in Karate in 1987. Since then he lives martial arts. In 1992 he switched to Tae Kwon Do which to this day has remained his main style of focus. In 2005 he opened Pil-Sung Martial Arts in Albany, NY. Over his years in martial arts, Master Grogin has also spent time training in; Wu Shu, Wing Chun, Kung Fu, Capoeira, Kumdo, Gymnastics, & Extreme Martial Arts. He current holds a 5th Dan Black Belt in Tae Kwon Do, a Black Belt in Karate and Combat Hapkido. Since the late 1980’s through now, Master Grogin competed in hundreds of martial arts tournaments, including World Tae Kwon Do Federation Tae Kwon Do, Wu shu, NASKA, KRANE, ISKA and USBA/WBA Breaking Competitions. He holds multiple titles in Tae Kwon Do Competitions as well as Breaking. He holds such titles as; North American Champion, European Champion and World Champion in competitive Breaking, as well as having been inducted into the Hall of Honors Martial Arts Hall of Fame. He was featured on ESPN2 multiple times.
In 2007 Master Grogin established the Annual North East Open Martial Arts tournament and showcase, held in Albany, NY annually. He is the co-founder of 518 Martial Arts, a local competition circuit in Upstate NY. He is on the Board of Advisors for the American Filipino Kun Tao Federation, is a repeat staff member of the Super Summers Seminars hosted by the Zen Do Kai International organization. He has also been a featured instructor at the World Kobudo Federations International Conventions.
Master Clinton MurphyDirector of Officiating, Local Director- Connecticut, USRead BioEmail
Master Clinton MurphyDirector of Officiating, Local Director- Connecticut, US
Master Clinton Murphy is a native of Brookfield, CT graduating High School in 1989. After high school, Master Murphy found himself looking for something to take the place of the fulfillment he found playing high school football and discovered the Martial Arts. He began studying Filipino Kun Tao with the LaBonte family in Brookfield. When his instructor moved out of state, he continued studying under Master Ralph Bergamo for the next 18+ years to achieve the level of 5th degree Black Belt.
As an established Black Belt with Bergamo’s Martial Arts, Master Murphy began competing with Team Bergamo in Breaking and won competitions on the state, regional, national and world levels, including 3 consecutive Heavyweight World Champion Belts in Power Breaking. Master Murphy has been seen competing on ESPN2, as well as being spotlighted in a Discovery Channel Documentary called “Xtreme Martial Arts,” an appearance on The Late Show with David Letterman, and a supporting role in the motion picture “The Agent.”
In 2008, Master Murphy opened his own school teaching in the Southwest corner of Connecticut. Today, at Modern Self Defense and Training Center, Master Murphy is a 5th Degree Blackbelt and teaches classes for adults and children, as well as continuing to compete around the country along with his two children, Samantha and CJ. He has been named a Local Director for Connecticut by the USBA/WBA where he enjoys judging and mentoring both kids and adults who find the same passion and excitement as he does in Breaking.
Master John ZuriskNorth Central Regional Director; Regional Director- Indiana, USRead BioEmail
Master John ZuriskNorth Central Regional Director; Regional Director- Indiana, US
I’ve had the true honor of training under some of the best instructors throughout my 30 year plus martial arts career. Starting in Shotokan karate (1st degree black belt under Sensei Bill Eley), to Aikido, to Tae Kwon Do / Hapkido (3rd degree black belt under Kyoshi Fred Richmond), to Ryukyu-Kempo (3rd degree black belt under Grandmasters Bill and Brett Homann), to Gracie BJJ (under Rickson Gracie), to Judo (currently brown belt under Senseis Tak Mizuta and Drew Wickham).
Like most kids my age we grew up watching movies featuring Bruce Lee, Chuck Norris, and Toshiro Mifune (primary actor in many Akira Kurosawa films). Those names alone probably account for more folks starting their martial arts training, including myself. It was a common site to see me walking around the neighborhood at grade school age picking up dried sticks and chopping them while yelling the infamous “hi-ya!”. In winter any icicle in reach was victim to my horizontal chop…again yelling “hi-ya!”. I guess you can say so started my passion for breaking. Fast forward to March 2007 where you would find some of the greatest competitive breakers competing (Larry Fields, Elton Trower, Karen Smith, Gary Reho, Ken Yates, Raphael Velez, Clint Murphy, Robert Raniolo). Back then I participated in one break, power wood hand–I was hooked! Additionally, everyone there was friendly, helpful, encouraging, and competitive! This was a great atmosphere to compete in, unlike other non-breaking venues I’ve been at where egos clashed. I’ve since had the pleasure of meeting and befriending so many more breakers that have helped me achieve the level I’m at now–all credit given to them. I would highly recommend anyone interested in breaking competitively to try an event at any USBA/WBA event and meet Grandmaster Ralph Bergamo and Master Drew Serrano.
Master Karen SmithLocal Director- Virginia, USEmail
Master Karen SmithLocal Director- Virginia, US
Grandmaster Paul HickeyLocal Director- Pennsylvania, USEmail
Grandmaster Paul HickeyLocal Director- Pennsylvania, US
Sifu Keith FanningLocal Director- Dublin, IrelandRead BioEmail
Sifu Keith FanningLocal Director- Dublin, Ireland
Sifu Keith’s love of Martial Arts sees him with a mixed background that started with Kung Fu at the age of four under his Father Sibo Jon Fanning who sadly passed away in 2013.
Along with Sifu Keith’s love for Kung Fu, he studied other Martial Arts training to be a more rounded martial artist, currently holding a Brown Belt in traditional Jiu Jitsu and the rank of Kru in Muay Thai. He also trained in Full Contact Kickboxing for three years before moving to London, England in 1996 to train full time in Kung Fu with Sibo Fanning.
In April 2006, Sifu Keith journeyed back to London to take part in a breaking exam which saw him pass with flying colours and be awarded the ‘Iron Palm Medallion’. This level had not been reached by anyone since 1973.
Sifu Keith’s love for Hard Chi Gung (Block Breaking) has seen him bring the first Irish Team of breakers to Orlando FL. in 2007 for the USBA/WBA world breaking championships. Then in 2008, he went back to the U.S.A with a team of nine and took home 15 trophies including two 1st places. Again in 2009, he took a seven man team and, this time took home thirteen trophies, in 2015 he made a return to the US open with his training partner Mac, they managed an impressive 2 firsts 3 seconds and 1 third place trophies. In 2016 he brought the Blue Dragon team to the first USBA/WBA European tournament in London, taking home 3 European championships and a big haul of medals and trophies
At present, Sifu Keith holds an 8th Duan Master Grade in Blue Dragon Iron Fist Kung Fu and was also recently promoted to international representative for the IWUF (international wushu federation) for Ireland. In 2015 he was promoted to local director for Ireland by the USBA/WBA. Among his other certificates he also holds a teaching certificate in Chi Gung issued by GM Chu.
Sifu Keith owns and runs his Fitness and Martial Arts Centre called Blue Dragon Fitness which is based in Balbriggan, North County Dublin. Sifu Keith also works closely with local charities and youth groups to provide a safe training environment. BDIF aims to provide Martial Arts based fitness and Martial Arts training for the whole family.
Master Ken GoodrichLocal Director- Massachusetts, USEmail
Master Ken GoodrichLocal Director- Massachusetts, US
USBA/WBA World/National Officials
Daniele SerranoRead Bio
Mrs. Daniele Serrano is a 3rd Dan Black Belt in American Filipino Kun Tao. She began her Martial Arts Training in 1993 in Waterbury, Ct under Master Michael Byrnes and late Grandmaster Joe Rossi. After the closing of studio, she continued her training under Senior Master Drew Serrano, her senior instructor and husband. Together they own East Coast Training Systems, a studio in Waterbury, CT and also work in partnership with a non-profit, Jane Doe No More, offering their signature Self-Defense Program “Escape Alive” throughout the state of Connecticut. This has been a highly successful partnership that has allowed the program to be offered to thousands of women and young girls “free” of charge to the participants.
Mrs. Serrano strongly feels that the Martial Arts has opened many doors for her and enabled her to empower and teach others as well as give back to the community. Here are some of her accomplishments:
- Received the “Dr. Henry Lee Award” for their “Escape Alive” Program, helping prepare and educate women and girls on how to defend themselves.
- USBA/WBA World Champion – Power Concrete Foot – ISKA U.S. Open – Orlando, Florida- 2014
- Appointed to the Board of Advisors for Jane Doe No More- 2011
- 1st place- Power Concrete Foot- Arnold Martial Arts Festival- Columbus, OH- 2011
- USBA/WBA North American Champion – Power Concrete Hand- North American Breaking Championships- Fairfield, CT- 2011
- USBA/WBA North American Champion- Power Concrete Foot- North American Breaking Championships- Fairfield, CT- 2011
- USBA/WBA New York State Champion- Power Concrete Hand- North East Open- Albany, NY- 2011
- USBA/WBA New York State Champion – Power Concrete Foot- North East Open- Albany, NY- 2011
- 1st place- Power Board Elbow- Atlantic City Breaking Championships- Atlantic City, NJ- 2011
- Hosted the IIMAA Training Conference- Kissimmee, FL- One of the largest Martial Arts Training Conferences in the World- 2010
- Partnered with Jane Doe No More to run Escape Alive Survival Skills to women across Connecticut- 2009
- 1st place Power Breaking – Peter Rogers National Karate Championships – Mohegan Sun Casino & Resort, CT- 2006
- 2nd place Self-Defense – U.S. Open International Championships- Orlando, Fl.- 2006
- “Female Breakout Action Star”- Action on Film International Film Festival- Los Angeles, CA- 2006
- 1st place Self-defense Peter Rogers Spring National Karate Championships-Mohegan Sun Resort & Casino, CT- 2005
- 3rd place Self-Defense – U.S. Open International Karate Championships – Orlando, FL- 2004
Sean AndersonRead BioEmail
- 3rd Degree Black Belt in American Filipino Kun Tao
- High School Physical Education and Health Teacher
- 2013 Lightweight World Champion- Multi-directional Wood and Power Sidekick Champion – US Open, Orlando Fl
- 2013 Lightweight World Champion- Power Sidekick Champion – US Open, Orlando Fl
- USBA/WBA Competition Record Holder- Lightweight (11 boards unspaced) and Heavyweight (12 boards unspaced), Power Wood Sidekick.
- First person to break 4 baseball bats with shin kick.