2010-01-27 / Business

Pride Martial Arts Academy’s programming includes safety course for children

by JESSICA L. FINCH Associate Editor

Pride Martial Arts Academy owner Todd Patterson and instructor Ashlee Amoia will begin offering classes at 5451 Sheridan Drive on Monday. Photo by Scott Schild Purchase color photos at www.BeeNews.com Pride Martial Arts Academy owner Todd Patterson and instructor Ashlee Amoia will begin offering classes at 5451 Sheridan Drive on Monday. Photo by Scott Schild Purchase color photos at www.BeeNews.com Training in martial arts since he was a child, Todd Patterson has lived what he promotes.

Owner of the new Pride Martial Arts Academy, Patterson will offer mixed martial arts classes to all ages and incorporate his experience in educational sessions for youths.

An 18-year veteran, Patterson first started training in martial arts when he was 5. A third-degree black belt three-time national champion, and six-time East Coast champion, he has taken on a new challenge that some might consider even more impressive. He is a nationally certified field agent for Kidz N’ Power, a national program.

“I have personally visited at least 100 schools and facilities to teach kids about safety,” he said.

When Patterson speaks to children he addresses issues such as bullying and stranger danger.

In speaking to children, their parents or members of his school, his mission is “Building A Safer Community, One Family at A Time!”

Patterson is on the verge of opening his studio at 5451 Sheridan Drive, near International Drive. His grand opening is slated for Monday, Feb. 1.

In addition to children and women’s safety classes, he will offer classes for children to adults and beginners to experienced. Children as young as 4 can sign up for programming.

His school is mixed martial arts-based, combining tae kwon do, muay thai and jujitsu.

Owning his own school has always been a dream of his, Patterson said, adding that it’s an opportunity to give back to the community.

The studio’s other instructor is Ashlee Amoia, who has been training for four years and is an East Coast champion.

Amoia said Patterson is an excellent teacher because he is an excellent student.

“He is always willing to learn more,” she said. “If the teacher is always learning, the students will always learn.”

Classes will be taught from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday.

The first 15 members to sign up will receive 50 percent off tuition for the first six months.

For information, call 565-0202 or visit www.amherstpridemma. com. Information on safety seminars will be posted throughout the year.

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