Coaches & Instructors

At CORE MMA we are lucky to have a diverse and experienced coaching team, surrounded by senior students who fully support the team and act as additional trainers.

We promote growth in all areas, and often host seminars with local & international specialists in order to bring fresh techniques & ideas to the training table.



Carlo Meister

Carlo started his study of the martial arts whilst a student at Hamilton Boys High School. He has an equal appreciation of both grappling and striking. Learn more

Chris Heke

Chris is known as one of the academies two 'mad professors', a very technical grappler - but never one to ignore the importance of solid fundamentals. Learn more

Luke Jumeau

Luke is without a doubt Hamilton's highest-acheiving MMA competitor to date, who has quickly risen to the top of the NZ MMA scene. Learn more

Marc Lelievre

NZ representative for the IMMAF Amateur World Championships 2016 in Las Vegas, Shuriken & XFC Australia Champion Learn more

Toby FitzPatrick

Toby is an excellent wrestler with international rankings, and has extensive skills in freestyle and submission wrestling as well as MMA. Learn more

Nepia Mahuika

Dr Nepia Mahuika is our other resident Purplebelt 'mad professor' of BJJ - as well as being a lecturer in History at the University of Waikato. Learn more

Frank Jarrett

In early 2015, Frank won the "Road to Vegas" Lightweight tournament to find an NZ rep for the IMMAF Amateur World Championships in Las Vegas. Learn more

Marcelo Rapucci

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Blackbelt and life-long martial artist. Marcelo was born in Brazil and joined the CORE MMA team in 2016 Learn more

Joesef Hamblin

Joesef reached the coveted rank of BJJ Brownbelt in remarkably short time, and has won No-Gi Gold at the Gracie Worlds in Los Angeles. Learn more

Daniel Van Den Berg

Dan is prized as a light-weight coach who places a strong emphasis on technique - which is evident in both his rolling and his classes. Learn more

Carl Houben

Carl absolutely loves teaching Beginners and Kids classes and has a real passion for Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Learn more

Clarke Jarrett

Clarke began training in Boxing with brother Frank, before joining the CORE MMA team in 2012 to focus on Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and launch his Amateur MMA career. Learn more

Jojo Walsh

Jojo began training in powerlifting and weightlifting in 2013 and began BJJ in 2016 Learn more

Alexander Kalnins

Alexander is a BJJ & Judo practitioner, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Purplebelt and a frequent Masters division competitor on the NZ BJJ scene. Learn more

Mark Craig

UFC Referee and Judge, Mark took on a standup coaching role and can be found offering unique insight during our Kickboxing and Open Mat sessions. Learn more

Phil Beale

Sensei Phil has been one of the most influential figures on Martial Arts throughout Hamilton. Sensei Phil was the head of the reputable Kobukan Martial Arts Learn more

Stuart Irwin

Stuart immigrated from the UK to Hamilton NZ, where he ran the Waikato Jujitsu Club after the former coach moved to Christchurch. Learn more

Josh Campbell

One of our resident Kickboxing Blackbelts, Josh had never been much of a sporting guy - but that all changed once he started Muay Thai. Learn more