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Freestyle Fighting Academy (FFA)- Miami

At Freestyle Fighting Academy (FFA), in Miami-Dade and Broward Counties, Florida, we teach REAL Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) and Self-Defense. Our kickboxing is world class, our wrestling is world class, and our submission grappling is world class. Why train kickboxing at one gym, jiujitsu at another gym, self defense at another gym… when you can do it all at FFA!

We are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and offer a 30 day free trial, with a 60 day money back guaranteed!

In two locations:

Miami-Dade County
1423 SW 107 Avenue
Miami, FL 33174

Broward County
13678 W State Road 84
Davie, FL 33325

  • Joel Sanchez says:

    This gym pretends to be the real thing, the staff thinks itself to be all that, they make you feel like crap when you don’t do what they want you to do, and buy into their sales pitches about shakes, and gear.

    I left when they started harrasing me about buying the over priced stuff they sell. Their technique is not that good, I am working out some place else and the difference is incredible!!

  • James says:

    XXXX artists! Free trial is not free, make sure you read the contract carefully! Instructors have very limited pro experience, mostly taught by glorified amateurs. Main instructors are under 30 years old!

  • Allen says:

    Both negative reviews are fake. What contract? You don’t have to sign anything to do the free trial. I did the full 30 days free and didn’t sign anything. You are either a fake reviewer from another gym or a complete idiot. Glorified amateurs? David Avellan, Marcos Avellan, Enrico Cocco, and Efrain Ruiz are the head instructors and are established fighters and known around the world. Just google their names.

    The Broward gym is ran by Mike Bernhard, ISKA MMA champ and super badass, watch his knockouts on youtube to see what sort of “amateur” he is. LOL, their wrestling coach Mike Rio is a 3-time collegiate national champion.

    Joel looks like it was written by the same guy. FFA sells Combat Sports equipment and sells it for less than The biggest giveaway that this review was fake though was the line, “and buy into their sales pitches about shakes, and gear…” FFA DOES NOT SELL SHAKES. There are absolutely no shakes at FFA, I’ve been with FFA for a little over two years and have trained at both locations and there has never been any shakes.

    FFA is a great gym! Ignore these posers. If you aren’t sure, just visit the gym and check it out. Boxing ring, cage, world class trainers, open 24 hours, blah blah blah, you get the point. Check out the website and come join up with us. Tell them Allen “the cookie monster” sent you, lol, they’ll know who I am. And let them know I’m keeping the posers at bay! lol

  • Leo Perez says:

    FFA is the best MMA school in Miami. Great kickboxing, great jiu-jitsu (especially no-gi), great wrestling, and great MMA. 5 stars from me.

  • Jose says:

    This gym is a XXXX and the instructors are a joke. Besides Marcos and David they do not have any quality coaching. Half of the staff are a bunch of kids that were brought up through their own system. Marcos and David are top notch grapplers, but their MMA game doesn’t go far. A clear example of that is watching David getting knocked in like 17 seconds in his last fight. As for Mike teaching in Davie, the guy has fought no one but a bunch of cans. There is a reason why all there former coaches left to American Top Team. If you want quality training and you live in Miami, Top Team is the way to go and they’re not going to rape you with the contract like FFA does.

  • mmagyms says:

    To our readers reviewing this gym, FFA Miami has contacted us about these issues. We hope that you, the user, will have a better understanding and discern what is legitimate and what is slanderous. We do not encourage slanderous reviews and attacks, as they will be subject to moderation. Thank you.

  • Hello, this is Eddie Sultan with the Freestyle Fighting Academy. I work the member services department and am posting this from the gym.

    First of all, in the past 8 years we have been open, we have had only one Joel Sanchez train at FFA and he is a blue belt. Master Marcos has contacted him and confirmed he did NOT write that review. He will be posting on here soon.

    FFA offers a 30 Day FREE Trial. There is nothing to sign to try us out for 30 days. Furthermore, we even have a 60 day money back guarantee, that if you try out our program fully and after 60 days have decided we did not come thru for you, we will give you your money back.

    Understand that we are the oldest MMA gym and the largest MMA gym in Miami, with close to a thousand members – we wouldn’t be this successful if we weren’t coming thru with our promises and treating our students great. Our gym has over 90 classes a week with classes starting at 6am and ending at 1:45am… and we are Open 24 Hours a Day.

    Do not let the people who post with fake names deter you from checking us out – you are an adult, nobody is going to put a gun to your head to sign anything 🙂 You can come in and try us out for 30 days free and, I repeat, NOT SIGN ANYTHING. If you like what we offer, you can join up.

    Why do we offer a 30 Day Free Trial and all the other free stuff? What is the catch? The catch is that 85% of our inquiring students end up signing up… that is a real statistic. The free month is our way of just getting you in the door because we know you will love what you see here.

    The REAL QUESTION isn’t asking WHY FFA is offering 30 DAYS FREE… but WHY AREN’T OTHER GYMS OFFERING 30 DAYS FREE? They aren’t offering 30 days free because they know that most of the guys and girls won’t stick around after a month… in other words, they know they have the best chance of hooking you if you have to make a decision right away. So ask yourself who runs a more honest business… the one that lets you test it out for a month or the one that forces you to decide after one free class?

    I’m sure someone else is going to reply to this with another fake name that isn’t in our records and pretend they were a student here that got a bad deal, etc. And then one of our real students will post on here such as Leo and defend us… at the end of the day, the only way you will find out about us is by coming in and checking us out yourself. You can also research us online and see our pedigree. Right now, as I post this, Master David just got back from ADCC Submission Wrestling World Championships in Spain and finished 3rd place in the WORLD at under 88kg. You can google that as well.

    If you are curious, call us up right now at 1-888-FFA-GYMS (1-888-332-4967) and make an appt to check us out. It will take about 30 minutes of your time to check out a gym that is known world-wide. Google Marcos Avellan, David Avellan, Enrico Cocco, Efrain Ruiz, Mike Bernhard, Mike Rio, Che Moreno, David Lago… these are the instructors at FFA. You can see their fight videos too – but their abilities as fighters are nothing compared to their abilities to teach.

    And yes, Master David did get KO’ed once by the first punch thrown in the WEC. I would rather judge his abilities to fight based on other fights, such as his fight on Bodog which can be seen here:

    They say a picture is worth a thousand words… and a video is worth a thousand pictures. Check out the video if you are interested in learning from some of the best fighters in the world.

    Our instructors are great grapplers, great strikers, and great fighters. We sent ten of our instructors to Thailand to train for a month, you can check that out on youtube by typing “FFA Thailand” and see all our instructors learning in Thailand.

    By the way, if you are still scared of checking us out, feel free to just “drop in” on Saturdays from 2:00pm to 4:00pm… that is our “Open Mat” and is a permanent FREE deal. We are open to everyone, regardless of what gym you are from, and many people from other gyms come in to train at that time. People from ATT, Noguiera’s, Xtreme, etc., all swing by to train and have fun.

    If you have any more questions, call us up or email us at [email protected]. Also check out our website at

    Best Regards,
    Eddie Sultan
    Member Services

  • joel sanchez (the real one) says:

    As far as I know there has only been one Joel Sanchez at FFA and that’s me. I did not write that previous review on FFA. I have nothing but good things to say about FFA Gym and its wonderful instructors who gave me the knowledge that I needed to take 1st place and a 2nd place at previous N.A.G.A. (North American Grappling Association) competitions. Obviously the (fake) Joel Sanchez who wrote that bad review has never been to FFA because they don’t even sell shakes. The instructors at FFA are very knowledgeable and do compete unlike other instructors from other schools who have never competed. To prove that I am who I say I am. You can have my email address which is [email protected] and look me up on Facebook. To those who are attempting to look for a gym don’t just listen to the haters using fake names with fake reviews and find out for yourself.

  • Again, there is NO RECORD of anyone with the first name or last name “Marlin” ever having even tried out a class at FFA.

    Concerning FFA’s striking, I like to let our record speak for itself…

    FFA’s all-time kickboxing/boxing record is 54-13, which is an impressive 80% win ratio! That record is spread out amongst 28 different fighters produced by FFA.

    We were recognized by LeftHook Promotions (the largest amateur kickboxing show in Florida) as the #1 Team in Florida (and the only team that went undefeated in 2008).

    We produced ISKA Kickboxing State Champion Joe Ray (Undefeated at 9-0).

    Christine Alvarez won the Florida Boxing Golden Gloves.

    Master Efrain has a black belt in kickboxing under legendary kickboxer Joe Lewis.

    Coach Enrico has been practicing traditional martial arts since age 4 and has a black belt in Tae Kwon Do under his father, Master Jose Cocco.

    Master Efrain, Master David, and Master Marcos had extensive training, about three to four years, under Eric “El Tigre” Castanos, who was a 3-time Kickboxing World Champion and assistant trainer of Boxing World Champ Jermaine Taylor.

    And as mentioned by “Marlin”, our team sent 10 of its fighters and instructors to Thailand, where Master Marcos and Master David received diplomas for completing a one month Advanced Muay Thai Instructor Course under Tiger Muay Thai, home of many Thai fighting champions.

    There is so much more info validating the gym’s obvious striking skill, such as our impressive 90% finish rate in our MMA fights in 2007 (18 out of 20 fights).

    From what I know, FFA is the only school in Miami to have had sent as many instructors as it did to Thailand. You can see all the videos from FFA’s trip to Thailand at

    Was the trip to Thailand worth it??? Well, within a month of his return, FFA coach Mike Bernhard won the ISKA MMA title by KOing American Top Team Black Belt Ailton Barbosa in 11 seconds, here is a video:

    Those who know of Ailton know what a great fighter he is. Mike gave credit to his striking training at FFA and to the training he received in Thailand.

    I now enjoy these attacks because they give me an excuse to bring up all of FFA’s accomplishments 🙂 As I said, feel free to learn more about us by giving us a call at 1-888-FFA-GYMS (1-888-332-4967) or sending us an email at [email protected]

    Best Regards,
    Eddie Sultan
    Member Services

    P.S. Good luck to the FFA kickboxers fighting this Saturday in Left Hook’s “Backyard Brawl!”

  • By the way, I was so focused on talking about our kickboxing that I forgot to mention our MMA accolades:

    In 2005, we sent one of our fighters to the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), the most prestigious MMA event in the world. That same year, we sent THREE competitors (Marcos, David, and Rima Avellan) to the ADCC – the most prestigious grappling in the world! We were the only team to send three in the same year.

    In 2006, our Pro MMA and Kickboxing Teams went completely undefeated.

    In 2007, our Pro MMA team finished 20-4, with an amazing 18 finishes by KO or Submission – that is a 90% finish rate!

    In 2008, our kickboxing team finished with only one loss – with one of our kickboxers, Joe Ray, winning the state championship (7-0), and with our team being recognized as the top kickboxing team in Florida by Warrior’s Collide (the largest kickboxing circuit in the southeast).

    As of October 2009, our MMA team is 71-31, our kickboxing team is 54-13, making our overall fight record 125-44 – meaning we win about 74% of our fights! Coach Enrico Cocco won the ADCC Trials (submitting 3 out of 4 opponents) and Master David Avellan finished 3rd in the World at the ADCC – which is the Olympics of Submission Wrestling. Our team has competed literally an average of about one to two times a month since 2003.

    If our MMA or striking game isn’t “good” with a 74% win ratio over 169 fights… then I don’t know what is! By the way, our all-time fight record of 125-44 is spread out amongst 45 fighters we have produced. In other words, we consistently produce results.

    Best Regards,
    Eddie Sultan
    Member Services

    P.S. Thanks for the opportunity to pull out all these numbers! If another “reviewer” could complain about schedule, that would be great, so that I could talk about our 24 hours schedule and our over 90 classes taught weekly, from 6AM to 1:45AM 🙂

  • James says:

    This gym plain blows. The staff is as far from professional at it gets. I guess with all the mma hype, places like this are really cashing in. A huge waste of money and time training at this place. Their strikers compete in C-level shows so if you wanna learn from undertrained people who boast about their great winning record at circus shows then this place is for you!

  • Again, we have the fake reviewers. It reads like two people going back and forth. It is very unfortunate that the webmasters of this website don’t require a better identification system. Our starting prices right now start as low as $137 month to month for our Street Defense class, which offers training 4 days a week (twice during the week and open mat Saturday & Sunday), this person doesn’t know what they are talking about. The prices range depending on what programs you are joining, there are literally over 30 different options.

    Furthermore, about our Street Defense class, the class is taught by a certified expert in Israeli Weapons Tactics. In the class, students work on defending and attacking with weapons and using street lethal bare handed techniques in a realistic scenario. This is why the police flock to FFA. The competition comment is laughable, we have about 1,000 students in Miami… and our competition team is 30 people strong… so the vast majority of our students do not compete. Although we do have one of the largest competition teams in Miami – the vast majority of our students are not competitors.

    Want real reviews? Check out these VIDEOS:

    BJJ Black Belt Arvin talks about FFA:

    Justo Diaz de Arce:

    Tae Kwon Do National Champion Corey Hill:

    Daryl Auguste:

    Pablo Tourinan:

    Tico Matamoros:

    Christian Crippen:

    Maybe the moderators can help out a bit over here and at least embed these videos on here. Otherwise, simply highlight the text, right click and select “Copy”, and then paste the info on your browser.

    By the way, you can visit the FFA Video Channel on Youtube at and see hundreds of videos about FFA.

    I want to take the time to thank the fake reviewers. It is because of you that FFA is now taking the responsible steps of getting video testimonial from its students. For the next month, we will be posting FIVE video testimonials a day about our gym and posting the links on here.

    So THANK YOU for helping FFA be the BEST it can be! 😉

    Best Regards,
    Eddie Sultan
    Member Services

    P.S. Check out this video from training last night:

    P.P.S. In the background outside, with his shirt off, you can see UFC fighter Tom Lawlor training. He is here for the week training with FFA – along with our normal squad of tough athletes. Don’t worry, we’ll get Tom Lawlor’s opinion of FFA on video as well 🙂 Normally, we wouldn’t have thought of it… but THANKS to these slanderous fake reviews, NOW we are going to do it, and imagine all the good publicity it will bring. Thanks guys! 😉

  • Thank you everyone, the moderators asked us not to fill up the review page with too many video reviews, so we’ll post only ten more here. If you want to see more, visit our youtube channel at to see over 50 reviews from real people. Or you can also type “FFA Testimonial” on youtube and see all the testimonials. Thank you.

  • Jose says:

    Nice facility, great technique, amazing people. real welcoming and no nonsense!

  • Ovidio Lorenzo says:

    I’ll tell you something these guys will work your ass off. I love the conditioning they do there. No disrespect to the team and anyone in there but i took the free month trial and i didn’t learn anything. We spent more of our time jumping up and down than learning any techniques. I didn’t go back at all. I recommend this gym to anybody that wants to lose weight and get in shape.

  • Orlando R. says:

    I joined FFA for a well rounded training environment and they delivered. Very technical explanations by all the instructors and very consistent. I enjoy it here and plan on staying here for a long time.

  • Ryan says:

    Great grappling instruction, contract is VERY LONG…2 years. The striking instruction stinks. Go somewhere else to learn MMA. If you want to learn how to grapple, this is a good place, for 200 bucks a month, you should be able to attend as many classes as you want not just 3 a week.

  • Armando Martinez says:

    I did the 30 Day Trial. IT WAS FREE !!! I went back last week and signed up. The instructors are great and really help you understand the technique. We grapple every day and drill striking and take downs. I’m learning how to put everything together. My plan is to move on to the advanced program within 3 months and start MMA sparring and kick-boxing sparring. I recommend FFA 110%

  • Happy Student says:

    Been a member for almost a year and I love it. I train in both the women’s bootcamp and the martial arts program. Originally my boyfriend at the time signed up and brought me along. I was hesitant and joined just to do something together. We broke up but I loved it so much I stayed. Really comfortable atmosphere for women and the schedule is very accommodating (in case you are wondering my ex and I never take the same classes).

  • C. J. says:

    I really enjoyed my time at FFA. Instructors there know everybodys name and teach very good. I compare this gym to the bar “CHEERS”, were everybody knows your name! jajaja I gave away my age. Great guys, I recommend.

  • Juan Carlos says:

    Coming from a traditional muay thai background I really appreciated my training at FFA. You can tell that the instructors have a depth to their knowledge since they have trained with many different wrestlers, jujitsu guys, boxers and kickboxers and are open minded to travel all around the world to expand on what they know.

  • junior crassco says:

    that place is sucks they dont have belts for bjj they have color shirts, and from one day to another they show up with black belts ,who give to then ? i try my 30 days and they got me for $400 dollars to cancel after>

  • mike says:

    garbage!!! Waste of money and time. a bunch of glorified amateurs who cant fight, and just want to take your money

  • Freestyle Fighting Academy says:

    Junior, we do have a BJJ class on Saturdays that utilizes BJJ belt ranks for those that are looking for traditional BJJ. We also have our shirt system for MMA.

    Master Marcos, Master David, and Master Efrain all received their BJJ black belts under Ricardo “Hellraiser” Teixeira, who is a 2nd degree black belt in BJJ under Joe Moreira. Ricardo Teixeira was the head BJJ instructor at FFA but now resides in Brazil.

    Junior, if you paid a cancellation fee, then you signed up. If you are only doing the free trial, you are not required to sign anything or leave any financial information.

    When you walk into the gym at any time, you will see people wearing orange shirts… all the people wearing orange shirts are free trial members who did not sign anything to try out the program.

    By the way, next time just sign “Junior”, like the post after with “mike”, instead of putting a fake last name. We have no records of anyone with the last name Crassco ever attending our gym (even for the free trial).

    Best Regards,
    Eddie Sultan
    Member Services

    P.S. Check out this quick FFA infomercial that answers a lot of the questions people have been asking about our muay thai kickboxing, our wrestling, our BJJ, and plenty of testimonials from real people:

  • This is a review website… so let me ask you this… what would you prefer… possible fake reviews from local rivals, or verified REAL reviews on video? Here are some of MANY you can find on youtube by typing “FFA reviews”:

    UFC Contender Tom Lawlor:

    BJJ Black Belt & Muay Thai Champ Nakapan Phungephorn:

    WEC Contender Mackens Semerzier:

    BJJ Instructor Karim Arditi (Hong Kong):

    Renzo Gracie Black Belt George Serneck:

    FFA Blue Belt Yoshi Dade:

    FFA Blue Belt Luis Hernandez:

    BJJ Black Belt & National Champ Travis Tooke:

    We have PLENTY more on youtube at

    And please watch our infomercial at to see even more testimonials at the end, including a testimonial from 3-time Collegiate National Champion and undefeated MMA fighter Mike “The Wolverine” Rio.

    Best Regards,
    Eddie Sultan
    Member Services

  • cesar gonzalez says:

    great school kicks my a** twice a week and if u know anything about MMA, if u dont have cardio u have NOTHING!! gives u exactly what u need if u ever want to take this seriously and go into a career in pro fighting. shout out to coach alex and the 12:30 a.m class!!

  • Chris says:

    Just found this site figured might pay my respects, I remember going there around like a year ago, it was a pretty bad ass gym, had I the money I would still be there, college bills just messed me up though.

    Tried a few other gyms and FFA was the best one by a long shot, with the instructors actually instructing and giving clear directions unlike a lot of other gyms(cough… the ATT’s in South Florida) where I did the trial, I literally had some trainers on other MMA gyms just perform and show the move and you either got it or you don’t and never even gave assistance, Its like I know im just a trial member but jesus, come on!

    In FFA that was never the case and when I left the class I usually(and I say usually because lets face it, Im not the fastest learner, being a southpaw doesn’t help either and I of course don’t expect to have the whole class devoted to me) had a understanding of the move and knew how to perform it, by the end of the week I always knew how to do it and do it correctly. Having someone always willing to spar with me was a big bonus too.

  • miguel says:

    FFA is not a bad gym but they are really expensive, im in the amateur fight team there and im honestly considering transfering to another gym just because im paying $200 a month for only 3 classes a week. I mean if i want to fight for them they should at least allow the amateur guys to come 5 times a week for $200 a month im really considering ATT more than 1 guy from FFA have already left to go there.

  • matt says:

    This gym is horrible. They say that you get 30 days for free but they dont tell you how they train their staff to get you to a sign a contract misleading you into thinking its only 30 days free and they will tear up the contract if you dont like it but then they charge you regardless. furthermore, they have acknowledged that their staff has been misleading but still did not give me back my money. Oh wait theres more. they also train their staff to come up to you and give you kudos right before they get you to sign a contract for years of commitment. They will also promote you to more advanced class and then tell you that you cant train there unless you sign a contract but nothing they give you while your signing up states any of that. Can you get some training there? yes absolutely. will it be top notch? absolutely not. If you like the im in kindergarten pump me ups like you can do it with a thumbs up and a smile then this is the place for you. You are a number here and thats it. I noticed a video of someone that bought the lifetime contract there and then later learned that he doesnt even train there anymore and pays to train somewhere else! what does that tell you about this place? marcos is all about sales and sales only everything else comes second. EVERYONE LEAVES THERE AND I MEAN EVERYONE. their own head instructors are all gone. they are overpriced and take you to court if you dont pay even after having told me that they knew they were in the wrong. this is a waste of space gym i dont suggest anyone go there. also notice that they respond to every bad review saying they are fake profiles!!! kindergarten stuff. just ask arounf go to other gyms first and ask the about ffa and just google the reviews a pleathura of bad reviews on this place. big big noooooo for ffa. ps i am not an imposter i have factual information and dont buy into this im another gym trying ot get business or badmouth you as i have not stated what gym i train at. cheers

  • Edward says:

    I do a lot of business in Miami and the few times a year I’m there I train at this gym. I enjoy it a lot because they are very welcoming and offer a wide range of classes and styles. I give it a thumbs up.

  • Stanley says:

    I trained there for eight months before moving and this was a solid school with friendly guys and great instructors. What I liked best was the range of classes and styles. Magnificent gym!

  • Ernesto says:

    Wow, some “reviews” here are totally uncalled for. I have recently taken a seminar at this gym and it’s one of the cleanest and safest facilities in Miami-Dade county. I have been to countless gyms in the area and they all have their perks, of course. Now FFA offers something the competitors don’t, which I think is ballsy– a money-back guarantee! Now as for the instructors, they have belts, recognitions and awards to speak for themselves. Are they the best in the word? Who the hell is??? Are they what they claim to be, well the organizations who distribute the awards can tell you that. As a boxer from Los Angeles I can definitely tell you that it’s the chemistry one has with his instructor/coach that makes the difference, not that if he defeated Royce Gracie or not. (for example). Sure Master Marcos and Master David have their respected credentials, but that doesn’t mean squat if they were not able to transmit that knowledge unto you as individuals. The only way to figure that outis, FOR YOURSELF! Take them for a test drive, take advantage of their free trial, and see for yourself what chemistry you can build with them. I will only promise you this; you WILL be saisfied with whatever decision you make walking out that door, nothing less, nothing more.

    The Estrada Boxing Club
    Antelope Valley, CA

  • 3 Month Student says:

    I’ve been at FFA for 3 months and I love it. I’m reading these reviews and some of the things I’ve heard are ridiculous. First of all, I started out with the free 30 day trial and never had to sign anything. Even if these people on here are telling the truth about FFA making them sign a contract for the 30 day trial (I doubt it), but I can guarantee you that since March 2012 they don’t make you sign anything for the free trial. The one complaint I had about the 30 day trial is that they try really hard to get you to sign up even before you finish the trial but at least they give you a free 30 days. The people here are friendly and the coaches are great. They push you without making you feel bad and they’re open 24 hours a day so you can go in and practice whenever you want.

  • Dax Anthony says:

    FFA is the best MMA gym in South Florida! Don’t listen to some of these bogus reviews. Most of them are just losers that quit the gym that would rather bash anonymously on the internet than actually go to class and train. FFA is the real deal. This is by far the best, safest, cleanest and most professional MMA training gym in South Florida. I have been training at FFA for almost a year and absolutely love it. I have trained in martial arts for over 15 years and have been to many different gyms and FFA is hands down the best. If you want to get quality instruction and train at a world class facility than come to FFA and train with me.

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