About Unified BJJ

Learn more about the history of our academy.

In 2006, Pedro Sauer left his original Brazilian Jiu Jitsu academy in Utah to start a new academy in Virginia. Master Sauer left the fate of his academy to a group of his most dedicated, high-ranking, students.

Those students were faced with a choice: go their separate ways and open their own independent academies, or stay unified as they continued on the path Master Sauer had set. Accordingly, during the summer of 2006, Pedro Sauer Black Belts, Shawn Weaver, John Carlquist, James Gardner, and Matt Strack founded the Unified Jiu Jitsu Academy.

Together, these four taught a new generation of jiu-jitsu students, aided by the capable instruction of fellow Black Belts Mike Diaz and Paul Sizemore. Since that time, a lot has changed but the quality and high-level instruction that has come to define Unified Jiu Jitsu has remained the same.

Today, John Carlquist and James Gardner own and operate Unified Jiu Jitsu, where every class is taught by a black belt; where the training is tough but technical; where teammates are like family; and where we are all driven by the desire to be better today than we were yesterday. We are Unified Jiu Jitsu.