Professor Sean’s journey with martial arts began in 1996 when he was introduced to Kenpo Karate by a friend at Kovar’s Karate Center. Shortly thereafter, Sean had the opportunity to practice BJJ with the legendary Nino Schembri, who came from Brazil and taught briefly at Kovar’s. At that time Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu had just begun to take root in the U.S., with only a handful of BJJ schools scattered throughout the country. After Nino’s departure, Sean continued training in Kenpo, and over the next 11 years earned his 4th Degree Black Belt.

In 2003, the door to BJJ reopened when Cassio Werneck starting teaching in Sacramento. Sean trained in Kenpo, Mixed Martial Arts and Jiu-Jitsu until 2007. At that point in time he decided to focus 100% of his training on BJJ at Cassio Werneck’s Jiu-Jitsu Academy. In 2016 Sean earned his Black Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu from Cassio Werneck and continues to train and teach at Cassio’s Academy.

Sean is pleased that his two children Jake (8) and Eva (7) have taken a liking to Jiujitsu and have been training since 2016. They can be found on the mat frequently, and are quickly becoming amazing jujiteiros in their own right.

BJJ Lineage: Lineage: Mitsuyo Maeda > Carlos Gracie > Reyson Gracie > Osvaldo Alves > Fabrício Martins > Ricardo Reis > Cassio Werneck > Sean McCandless