Dennis has been training in martial arts since the age of 7. Ironically, at one point he wanted to quit but his mother encouraged him to continue and work toward his goal of black belt. He followed his mother’s advice and continued his training all the way up to college where he met his wife Marisa. He had a brief hiatus from training as he figured out what style of martial arts he wanted to study next. Marisa encouraged him to go back to his love of martial arts and he joined the late Robert Liedke’s American Institute of Martial Arts. He he studied for several years and earned a black belt in the style of Aikido taught at AIMA.
Dennis opened his own school in November 2000 as Aiki Academy of Self Defense, LLC with a 1700 square foot suite and a dream to offer the best instruction available in mixed martial arts and fitness. Dennis and his wife Marisa began this journey while expecting their first child in March the following year. At the time, Dennis was working full-time at Anthem BC/BS and Marisa was working full-time at Physicians Health Services. Both Dennis and Marisa worked in the coporate world for over 10 years. Dennis’ background was in Provider Relations and Marisa was a Director in Underwriting at PHS. While working at Anthem, Dennis earned his MBA at Quinnipiac University.
As the requirement to travel out of state for Anthem became more and more frequent, Dennis left his full-time job and began putting 100% of his time into the studio. Marisa soon joined him and the business expanded about 5 years later with an additional suite of 2,000+ square feet. In 2016 the studio once again grew and took over a third suite for a total of 6,000 square feet of training space.
Marisa and Dennis are the proud parents of two teens, Danielle and Nicholas. They also are very big animal lovers and have rescused an assortment of pets over their 28 years of being married. They currently have 2 rescued dogs, cats and a cockatiel who likes to sing military songs.
No matter the class you are interested in, we can GUARANTEE that you will not be disappointed. We have top-notch instructors for every class, and our supportive groups will motivate you to keep going – and to keep coming back! We truly care about your progress and helping you reach your personal fitness and health goals.
Dennis Hill, Chief Instructor has trained military personnel, police officers and detectives. He is a 4th degree black belt in Combat Hapkido, a black belt in Judo, a 1st degree black belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ), and a certified Krav Maga instructor. Dennis also trains in Kali with Paul Kischkum. He earned his certification in Kettlebells from Pavel Tsatsouline and has trained in Wrestling for 8 years with Master of Sport Joseph Vigdorchik, Russian Freestyle Wrestling. Dennis is also a certified food coach with Balanced Habits.
Our staff here at CT Krav Maga & MMA in North Branford, CT has the confidence and belief that anyone can succeed in any of our programs while having a great time doing so. CT Krav Maga & MMA is committed to providing the highest quality training available and is proud to say that we will give a positive learning environment in which individuals of all ages can benefit from.
No matter what your abilities may be, we guarantee you that you will be treated with common courtesy and recognition. We strive for our student’s happiness and we do everything in our power to make sure our students are learning, building endurance, and gaining a great deal of self-defense.
People choose to train here because we provide a non-intimidating, safe and clean atmosphere which allows our students to fully get the most out of our programs. Our training programs are comprehensive and balanced, allowing our students to gain the ability in learning technique, strength, and increasing their self-confidence tremendously.
We believe that all of our programs should be serious but fun at the same time. We want our students to feel comfortable in class and to really get the most out of their time spent here. Our students will train, progress, and achieve. Our staff are well qualified and individuals that become part of our training program will have the opportunity to learn from some of the greatest trainers in the field.
Our studio started out in November 2000 with 1700 square feet, one suite and a dream for helping people with self defense and fitness. Having worked in the corporate world for over 10 years, Dennis Hill has applied many of the principles he learned from business to running one of the largest martial art studios in CT.
Our North Branford Krav Maga studio offers training in multiple arts such as Krav Maga Self Defense classes for men and women, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ), Kickboxing and Kali. We offer Kettlebells for strength and cardio training and Yoga for developing lean muscles and flexibility. Our facility offers over 6,000 square feet with three training areas, lockers and a comfortable waiting area with WiFi. We also offer a full youth martial art program for children ages 4 and older. Our modern facility has a large comfortable waiting area with free coffee and tea and a large adjacent playroom for younger siblings.
CT Krav Maga & MMA is affiliated with Kore BJJ, which is also an American Top Team Connecticut training facility. We are affiliated with the United States Krav Maga Association (USKMA) under Mark Slane. Hundreds of members have selected CT Krav Maga & MMA for our Krav Maga, BJJ, Kali and group fitness classes such as Kick Start Boot Camp, Kettlebells and C360 Circuit Training with bikes & rowers. We offer a supportive and friendly environment with small group classes. We often hear that our members think of our facility as an oasis from all the stress of their day, where they can feel refreshed and rejuvenated after a training session. Our C360 Circuit Training program offers a fantastic workout for burning tons of calories and reducing stress. Our Boot Camp Classes are also a ton of fun with lots of cardio and resistance training. Safety during training is always a high priority for our facility. We offer a professional environment in order to provide the best experience for our clients.
Our Krav Maga, BJJ, & Kali classes offer you the opportunity to not only learn practical self defense with martial arts but also as an added bonus to get an incredible workout. We have had students join for the primary reason of learning a martial art and their training resulted in a significant weight loss as an added benefit!