First Name Last Name

Ian  Lieberman
Ian Lieberman


First Name: Phil
Last Name: Cardella
City: St. Augustine
State: FL
Country: USA
School: Relson Gracie Jiu-Jitsu St Augustine FL
Reader Comments
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1. Submitted by jay Dennis on Friday February 20, 2009 11:13 AM
After Relson, I consider Phil to be my instructor. He is all business, and I am glad to be affiliated with him.
2. Submitted by Jim on Wednesday July 14, 2010 3:07 PM
Great instructor, very technical, and full of energy. If you’re in the Austin area Phil is the guy to train with!
3. Submitted by Aaron L. Smiley on Thursday January 27, 2011 12:06 PM
While Phil is not my direct instructor I see him 3 or 4 times a year when he comes to do seminars in MD. He is a great & technical instructor. Patient & knowledgable. Energetic doesn’t begin to describe him. Our “2 hour” seminars usually last 4 hours.
4. Submitted by Adrian Scatton on Monday July 4, 2011 5:37 PM
A great instructor. His focus is contagious and really helps with translating technique. A great person in general.
5. Submitted by Jeromy Delgado on Thursday July 7, 2011 3:41 PM
Phil is a class act. His positivity,sportsmanship and discipline is contagious.He makes technical easy because of how good he is at teaching. He makes you want to work harder and be the best you can be on the mats and outside the academy doors. Phil is an elite instructor and I speak for many students.
6. Submitted by Laura on Friday July 8, 2011 11:54 PM
I have witnessed Phil teach among some of the best in the world. His classes are detail oriented, thorough, and positive. Most classes I have seen, Phil takes the time to spar with every single student in the class with good control. The best way to measure his talents are through his students success in their many goals and the way they treat people.
7. Submitted by Phil Cardella on Saturday July 9, 2011 10:07 PM
Thanks for all the kind words everyone, I do my best to carry our sport in a positive light & teach relevant techniques. I always offer a free class, come train!
8. Submitted by Kyle Arnold on Wednesday July 13, 2011 5:08 AM
Phil has made a very positive impact on my life and self improvement. He wants to see us excel, and I feel lucky to be able to train with him in Saint Augustine. I am in Kauai on vacation and have done some training at the KTI Relson academy. When the students find out Phil is my instructor, their eyes light up and they give him deserved respect. I can’t wait to get back and learn more from him.
9. Submitted by Steven Dahn on Tuesday August 9, 2011 1:30 PM
Phil Cardella is one of the best BJJ instructors in the buisness. Not only does he have an incredible way of relaying his knowledge and expertise to his students, but he takes the time to make sure we have every technique perfect before we just “move on” to the next thing. Im proud to call Phil not only my instructor, but my dear friend!!!
10. Submitted by Matt Vona on Tuesday August 9, 2011 1:36 PM
World class jiu jitsu , and person. He has a great style that can also adapt well into mma. Everyone on the first coast should be at his academy.
11. Submitted by Cory Barnett on Tuesday August 9, 2011 1:38 PM
You wont find a more knowledgeable and influential BJJ instructor than Phil Cardella. Located right in the middle of St. Augustine Phil’s academy is the perfect getaway if you wanted to either sharpen up your bjj skills or if you were looking to exercise. Come join today, No Regrets !!!!
12. Submitted by Robert Mcdaniel on Tuesday August 9, 2011 1:45 PM
Phil is a great instructor he like to surrond u with good people and always has good positive enrgy in the gym.Phil can be a great friend but knows in the gym every one is the showed the same respect.Im glad to have him here in my home town.
13. Submitted by Sam k. on Tuesday August 9, 2011 4:39 PM
Hands down the best instruction i have ever had. Some people are awesome teachers but horrible martial artist, and some are horrible teachers and world class martial artist. Phil is both, an amazing teacher who communicates the concepts of jiu jitsu easily, and a top level athelete.
14. Submitted by Bryce D. on Tuesday August 9, 2011 6:09 PM
Phil was my first instructor, and sparked my interest in the sport. He is very dedicated and thorough. Ill roll with Phil anytime. 10/10
15. Submitted by Kevin Phelps on Tuesday August 9, 2011 8:22 PM
It should read submitted by Phil C. and then go on to have comments cause it has happened so many times!!! Phil is about practicing perfectly. There is no detail too small to get right. I has been my pleasure to have trained with Phil since 1999. As a former Martial Arts instructor I have a keen appreciation for someone who gets it right and does it right. He is the embodiment of a truly great Martial Artist and person. I have immense respect for Phil and you are lucky to get to train with him. Enjoy it, learn from the best!!!
16. Submitted by Cesare on Wednesday August 10, 2011 12:53 PM
Some of the best high lvl BJJ instruction anywhere! Whether you are new to jiu-jitsu or have trained under other instructors for years, Phil will teach you new techniques and variations on traditional Gracie jiu-jitsu that you won’t find anywhere else.
17. Submitted by Wanda on Thursday August 11, 2011 11:12 PM
Phil relates to all ages of students. He can spark interest in the young and old. I’ve followed his work in Austin. He has graciouly donated his time and energy to women’s organizations and has helped women in crisis after an assault. He has empathy and energy to share. He’s sincere, works very hard and is an exceptionally good teacher for any level student.
18. Submitted by Ben Nepveux on Friday August 12, 2011 9:52 PM
I’ve enjoyed learning under Phil Cardella at Relson Gracie Austin. Phil was my first instructor of GJJ and gave me an appreciation of the dedication required to be a successful practitioner in both the academy and real-life situations. To say I’ve benefited from Phil’s instruction would be a gross understatement. I’m currently anticipating his seminar in Austin and no one should hesitate at any opportunity to train with him.
19. Submitted by Jared H on Friday August 12, 2011 11:09 PM
Phil is an awesome teacher, he really takes what he is doing with 100% seriousness and makes each training session a great experience. He is very willing to accept all incoming students of all levels.
20. Submitted by Toney on Thursday September 8, 2011 4:16 PM
Incredible instructor Phil is . He has helped my game a bunch and look forward to train with him again soon .
21. Submitted by michael on Thursday September 29, 2011 12:05 PM
I started my training with Phil in Austin before moving away after a few years and all of the good things that have been said of him here are certainly true! He is a passionate, technical, and energetic instructor who works tirelessly to build his students up. If you get the chance definitely go train with him, no matter how much experience you have I’d suspect he will show you something new and highly effective.
22. Submitted by Chad on Thursday September 29, 2011 12:19 PM
I met Phil at a seminar that a buddy drug me to years ago. I was hooked, instantly. He was a great teacher and I’ll never forget the 1st time I got caught in a triangle. I still feel myself slipping into the darkness. LOL.. Phil rocks. I wish I lived closer to him and could train more often.
23. Submitted by Eric Howard on Thursday September 29, 2011 1:45 PM
Thanks for all the assistance, training, and support provided to the Ft. Bliss Comabtives Program over the last 5 years. Excellent training and seminars you conducted 2 weeks ago and look forward to bringing you out here again soon.
24. Submitted by MikeG on Thursday September 29, 2011 3:36 PM
I’ve trained with Phil for 10 years. He’s my instructor and my close friend, and I’ve got lots of medals and scars so I know what I’m talking about. Train with Phil and learn to fight. Train to continue honing your skills. Learn effective self defense for the street. Get fit, healthier and stronger. Without a doubt, training with Phil will allow you to accomplish your goals, but most of all, you will develop friendships and strong bonds that last and that will help you grow as a martial artist and as a person. You can’t put a value on that.
25. Submitted by Wayne Cope on Thursday September 29, 2011 6:14 PM
My 7 year old son Jayden Cope has tried several different sports, however the MMA classes he does with Phil Cardell is most rewarding to him. He is and stays very excited about going to classes. I am glad to see the dedication that is put into the classes by Mr. Cardell. He keeps even the young kids excited and motivated. Phil is a very personable and likable person and I would and do recommend his teaching to everyone, no matter the age.
26. Submitted by Melvin Hayes on Thursday September 29, 2011 7:02 PM
Phil is one of the best bjj instructors I know and he is the best at what he does. The system that he teaches is something that i’ve never seen before and im always learning new things everyday while I train with him and no one that I know is as good as Phil Cardella
27. Submitted by James on Thursday September 29, 2011 7:30 PM
I’m very pleased with the instruction that my two boys, ages 8 and 6, are receiving at Phil’s academy. They look forward to class three days a week and have shown good progress. Having trained with Phil will carry a lot of weight in the coming years.
28. Submitted by David on Friday September 30, 2011 7:11 AM
Phil is excellent. I train in Va but have attended his seminars and visited his school in St. Augustine. Each time Phil has exceeded expectations. His friendly and outgoing manner is only exceeded by his meticulous instruction. I’m proud to be part of the Relson family.
29. Submitted by Gary Fusani on Friday September 30, 2011 8:41 AM
Not only is Phil a beast a jiu jitsu, he’s also a great instructor. Training with him is always worthwhile and fun, too.
30. Submitted by Joe Harbin on Sunday October 2, 2011 9:21 PM
Phil is an “OUTSTANDING” bjj instructor. He is full of energy and very gifted when it comes to teaching. He has taught both me and my 7 year old son. His enthusiasm for this art is contagious. He is the man.
31. Submitted by Remo K. on Monday October 3, 2011 12:23 AM
Its uncommon to find an instructor who practices what they preach when it comes to technique and lifestyle on and off the mats. Phil is a world class martial artist and a truly exceptional coach who is always helping to take my game and outlook on combat to the next level. Phil is amazing
32. Submitted by Ryan on Monday October 3, 2011 12:35 PM
Phil Cardella is a consummate professional instructor. He is a technical expert in every sense of the word and he provides outstanding real-world examples throughout his training, which reinforces the purpose of why the student is there in the first place. I highly recommend Phil to anyone that is interested in learning Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. His passion and enthusiasm are contagious. Try it – you will not be disappointed.
33. Submitted by axel rodriguez on Monday October 3, 2011 7:00 PM
Phil Cardella is a real-deal martial arts instructor. Very professional and thorough. He is a wealth of knowledge. Any one wanting to learn or enhance your Brazilian jiu-jitsu should train with him.
34. Submitted by Jordan Farmer on Wednesday October 5, 2011 4:03 PM
I dont think its possible to be a better BJJ instructor than Phil Cardella. Seriously, hes the best.
35. Submitted by Anthony Rodriguez on Friday October 7, 2011 5:29 PM
Phil is very technically sound, tough as nailz, and has an unbelievable passion for teaching. If your in the St. Augustine area and your NOT training with Phil Cardella…then your WAISTING YOUR TIME!
36. Submitted by jacq M. on Saturday October 8, 2011 8:49 AM
phil is no doubt a great jiu-jitsu instructor.I only wish he was still training in austin,texas. he pays attentiont to each of his students to make sure they are doing well. its definently worth a trip to st.augustine, florida to traing with him!
37. Submitted by Possum on Wednesday October 12, 2011 12:02 AM
Phil is a phenomenal instructor. His attention to detail is amazing and really shows in his teaching. He takes the time with each student to make sure they completely understand not just the technique but why it works. I highly recommend visiting his academy.
38. Submitted by Zen on Sunday October 16, 2011 12:12 PM
Legend in Austin, Tx!
39. Submitted by Aaron L. on Sunday October 16, 2011 2:58 PM
Wish Phil was still here in Austin. Things just aren’t the same without him around. The people in Florida are lucky to have him.
40. Submitted by Jim T on Sunday October 16, 2011 6:29 PM
St. Augustine I’m jealous! If you want to train Gracie Jiu-Jitsu, you have to try a class with Phil. Me saying how great of an instructor Phil is on this website just doesn’t do him justice. You have to experience a class for yourself to know what I’m talking about. Phil keeps the Jiu-Jitsu pure the way Helio and Relson want. Try a class!
41. Submitted by Valerie on Sunday October 16, 2011 10:33 PM
Phil is an excellent instructor and makes training fun and relevent. St. Augustine is lucky to have him – his knowledge and enthusiasm for Jiu-Jitsu is amazing!
42. Submitted by John Estes on Sunday October 16, 2011 10:59 PM
very esay to understand when he gives his instructions. He focuses on all the people in his classes and if you don’t get something and are having trouble he figures out how the person or persons can get the job done. I’ll never forget his triangle. And the first seminar i ever went to i voluntered to get renaked choked and that was it… PHIL IS THE MAN
43. Submitted by Troy Ramos on Monday October 17, 2011 7:11 AM
Phil is the complete instructor. I have never seen so much focus, drive and willingness to share in one individual. He improved both the mental and physical aspects of my game. Phil loves competition and bring out the best in his students; wither you are training for a tournament, a fight or self- defense Phil is definitely the instructor you want in your corner.
44. Submitted by Danny Sendejas on Monday October 17, 2011 12:54 PM
Phil has an abundance of knowledge and experience which he displays with a wonderful temperament. Any person can appreciate BJJ with Phil on any level from newcomer to years of training. If you are unable to study directly under him, try to attend one of his seminars and be your own testament.
45. Submitted by Kevin Mcdaniel on Tuesday October 18, 2011 5:03 PM
Phil teaches in a way that makes it easy for someone to just jump in and do it and makes you motivated to do just that. excellent instructor and one of the best hands down.
46. Submitted by Andrew F on Wednesday October 19, 2011 10:38 AM
Phil’s passion and drive for bjj and combat forms makes him stand out above the rest, and learning under him was a complete honor. Austin’s bjj/fight scene misses him and if you’re in Florida, you should go out of your way to train with him!
47. Submitted by Drew Arthur on Wednesday October 19, 2011 10:44 AM
Phil is a great instructor. I first starting learning jiu-jitsu in Hawaii under Relson Gracie and Scott Divine. When I came to Texas I came back to Rwlson Gracie and Phil helped me- He helped me convert from Japanese Jiu-Jitsu and BJJ mix to Relson Gracie Jiu-Jitsu Syatem- Phil has a wicked triangle- He is one of the worlds best instructors- he is younger than me, and although my focus in more in the direction of self defense aspects of jiujitsu training Phil is my mentor. He one of the best of the best.
48. Submitted by Phil Cardella on Wednesday October 19, 2011 11:31 AM
In the profile it says my school is Austin. I founded that academy but am actually in St. Augustine FL like the listed city says… SO my school or Academy is Relson Gracie Jiu-Jitsu Saint Augustine FL.
49. Submitted by Nick Cardella on Wednesday October 19, 2011 11:52 AM
An excellent instructor who relates well with all ages and skill levels. His seminars are a must for anyone who is serious about jujitsu.
50. Submitted by pat madden on Wednesday October 19, 2011 12:13 PM
Phil is great instructor and very passionate about his teaching. I highly recommend attending any class he is teaching.
51. Submitted by Steve Slawson on Wednesday October 19, 2011 4:00 PM
I trained with Phil while he was located in Austin, Texas. He is an excellent instructor. He does a particularly awesome job of explaining the transitions from one submission to another. More importantly he has an infectious an genuine love for Jui-Jitsu (and food!). You can’t go wrong training with him.
52. Submitted by James cleaver on Wednesday October 19, 2011 6:39 PM
I have trained with Phil for over 10 years, and learn something new everytime I walk in the door. His style of Jiu Jitsu is effective, and translates well to real world situations. Classes are fun, interesting, and great exercise for all ages and skill levels.
53. Submitted by Jerry on Wednesday October 19, 2011 8:06 PM
I have worked with Phil and have known him inside as well as outside the dojo. His BJJ instruction is outstanding.
54. Submitted by John Richardson on Wednesday October 19, 2011 11:57 PM
I was fortunate enough to train with Phil in Austin. He is an awesome instructor. He is very disciplined and very passionate about his work. He has also taken a great deal of time to learn and perfect the art of jiu jitsu. He is top notch.
55. Submitted by Michael Marchigano on Monday October 24, 2011 11:02 AM
A really awesome guy, both teacher and person. I’ve been blessed to have trained with this man before and anyone who has or does also is!
56. Submitted by Alex Nguyen on Monday October 24, 2011 11:10 PM
Phil is the real deal. Brutally funny but knowledgeable and sharp. His BJJ classes are technical, challenging, and overall extremely positive. I would recommend training with Phil any day.
57. Submitted by Brandon Hilts on Tuesday October 25, 2011 11:18 PM
Best mma guard game around. One of the few guys who can strike effectively off his back all the while stifling or setting-up his submissions.
58. Submitted by Rahim Heath on Saturday November 5, 2011 11:22 AM
Phil’s technique is spot on. He pays attention to every detail, ensuring his students perfect everything he teaches them. I fully enjoyed learning from Phil and recommend it to anyone who wants to advance their BJJ.
59. Submitted by Erik Paabo on Monday November 14, 2011 11:12 PM
I have been lucky enough to train with Phil for about 3 months now. He is a world class instructor, martial artist, and MMA fighter. Phil has Black Belts in Gracie Jiu-Jitsu, Tae Kwon Do, Hapkido, and studied Muay Thai when he was stationed in Thailand with the Marine Corps. Phil is always around for an hour or two after class to help everyone work on their technique, you really get your dollar�s worth. You won’t find a better instructor anywhere.
60. Submitted by Chris Spicer on Tuesday December 6, 2011 8:10 AM
Phil is THE reason I am in the position and the person I am today. After Master Relson Gracie I consider Phil my main instructor. I have been a student of his for about 8 years and am happy to say that most of my style is a reflection of his. Phil is genius on the mats and by far the most technical Gracie Jiu-Jitsu practitioner that I have ever rolled with. He is a true teacher and friend who will help you on and off the mats.
61. Submitted by Anonymous on Wednesday December 21, 2011 11:29 PM
Great instructor. Good luck!
62. Submitted by Mike on Wednesday January 11, 2012 9:54 PM
Phil is a great teacher in part because he explicitly teaches the open guard (which most teachers fail to cover). He always takes time to roll with his students so they can absorb his skills (which some teachers do not do). As a teacher, he always worked as hard as possible to gain the loyalty of his students. I even recall him teaching 7 times a week!
63. Submitted by Kevin on Monday January 23, 2012 9:38 AM
Just started training @ Phil’s gym in St. Augustine. He really cares about each student and it shows. All his students have access to him 24/7. His attitude is infectious and makes people around him want to be their very best. It’s not just about BJJ with him, it’s about life in general and making the most of your opportunities.
64. Submitted by Michael Casey on Monday June 4, 2012 6:43 PM
When it comes to learning authentic Gracie Jiu-Jitsu, Phil is the Man. He is one of the only instructors that I bring to my Academy, other than Relson Gracie, because of his understanding and desire to make students better. Phil is one of the most committed practitioners I know, and this is what you need in an instructor. Florida is very lucky to have him.
65. Submitted by Steve Hordinski on Saturday September 15, 2012 8:26 AM
Phil is a good friend and long time training partner of mine. Not only is he one of the best he’s a pioneer of the sport in Texas, where he spent many years building a successful team based out of Austin. I highly recommend anyone one in the area to study and train under his guidance
66. Submitted by DJ Blackwell on Saturday September 15, 2012 12:59 PM
I have been training with Phil for over 11 years now, and can honestly say he is a world class Gracie Jiu-Jitsu instructor. From first day White to 4 Stripe Brown Belt all my Jiu-Jitsu came from Phil, and Team Relson Gracie. Take a class and see for yourself. His results on the mats speak loud and clear.
67. Submitted by Scott Phillips on Friday September 21, 2012 3:15 PM
Phil is an INCREDIBLE instructor and competitor. Phil will invite you into the Relson Gracie family and treat you like a long-time member. If you’ll simply train under him, do what he tells you to do, the way he he says to do it, you’ll become a jiu-jitsu monster! Train with Phil!
68. Submitted by Joe Cheavens on Saturday September 22, 2012 11:46 AM
I’ve been doing martial arts of some sort for thirty years and have seen the good, bad and the ugly as far as martial arts instructors and schools. Phil is by far one of the best instructors I’ve ever had the pleasure to train under. My only complaint is that he moved to Florida so I don’t get to train with him here in Texas anymore. You Florida folk really lucked out.
69. Submitted by JT3 on Saturday September 22, 2012 1:47 PM
Phil visits our academy a few times a year. He is hands down one of my favorite coaches. Very technical and so much fun to train with. If you want to learn real Gracie Jiu-Jitsu from a great guy, Phil is the coach for you.
70. Submitted by David Zapatka on Tuesday September 25, 2012 10:22 PM
When I think Jiu-Jitsu I think Phil Cardella. A great instructor. Not only knowledgeable beyond his belt, he can also adapt his teachings to his audience. Phil has volunteered many years supporting the United States Army and it’s Combatives Program. The lessons he gives sticks with us daily as people and soldiers. Phil we salute you.
71. Submitted by christy thomas on Wednesday September 26, 2012 1:54 PM
Philip Cardella lovingly introduced me to Relson Gracie and his Jiu-Jitsu. I have to THANK Phil for one of the most important occurrences in my life. I have a major appreciation of the talent, skill and great care that goes into the training that he puts into his students while on/off the mats. I was present and participatory for Phil’s journey from blue belt thru past his great achievement of Relson Gracie Black Belt. A well deserved accomplishment, Phil has done a more than great job of representing Relson through Gi, No-Gi, MMA, Pancrase competitions and events as well as his constant presence on the mats of our team. He has shown a true interest in the growth of our team, teammates and exposure of Relson Gracie to the world. I not only recommend anyone who gets a chance to train with Phil but implore you to poke and prod as much knowledge and technique out of him as you can!! He won’t say no to a single request for more training or info and if there is another suggestion: get that sucker to cook for you!! He’s a man of many talents and should be celebrated for his full life of superbly talented accomplishments. Do not pass a chance to spar with Phil and for sure, WATCH OUT FOR THE TRIANGLE!!
72. Submitted by Michael Casey on Thursday October 11, 2012 4:23 PM
Another incredible seminar by Phil! Every time I see him he’s either showing me a new trick, or tightening up an old one. My guys love when he visits and gets on the mats to train with them. Phil lives the true Jiu-Jitsu life, like a modern day Samurai, training and eating the best he can at all times. He is a leader and an inspiration.
73. Submitted by Saad Al-Aziz on Tuesday September 3, 2013 9:20 AM
Phil Cardella is one of the best jiu jitsu teachers I have ever met. He is a Relson Gracie black belt, MMA fighter and served our nation as a U.S. Marine. He is tough as nails and extremely technical. Wish that I lived closer to Phil so I could train with him every day. His students are incredibly lucky to have Phil as their teacher.
74. Submitted by on Monday February 3, 2014 12:37 PM
Once again, Phil delivers! Another fantastic seminar. If you are in the area, stopping by Phil’s place for a free class will be a decision you will not regret.
75. Submitted by Mike C on Tuesday July 21, 2015 2:51 PM
Another outstanding seminar held in New York by Phil! When most gets get comfortable and lazy with their dreams and business, Phil just keeps it coming! I’ve got to fly him out here but if you’re in the St. Augustine area you really should stop by and check his place out.
76. Submitted by Sidney Gills on Tuesday July 21, 2015 7:31 PM
Awesome instructor. Always learn something new even when we revisit old material. Phil breaks everything down to the smallest detail in a way that makes sense. And I’ve never heard him say “Don’t get there!” He just shows you how to get out.
77. Submitted by Shiloh Pelchat on Saturday April 21, 2018 8:02 AM
My daughters first started Jiujitsu with Phil, and now my whole family does it. Phil is so great with the kids, keeps them focused and always learning. I�m so thankful to have found Jiujitsu and I believe it has enhanced our lives, full circle. I hope Phil never leaves St. Augustine.
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Ben Baxter
Ben Baxter