Sensei Costanzo began his martial arts training as a student of Master Isham Latimer’s in 1979 and continues to study with him today. Sensei Costanzo’s interest in the martial arts originally started in high school where he was a gymnast who was fascinated by the athleticism of the art.
After graduating High School, Sensei Costanzo served in the Army during the Viet Nam War from 1968 – 1970 where he achieved the rank of Sergeant E5 as a combat infantry squad leader for the 1st Infantry Division. He received a Bronze and Army Commendation medal for valor while serving his country. Returning to civilian life, Sensei Costanzo graduated from Dowling College in 1976 with a BA in Education under the GI Bill. He worked for AT&T in New York and New Jersey for 24 years, primarily as a middle-management computer programmer and has been teaching Computer Science for the last 11 years at St. Joseph’s High School in Metuchen, NJ. He plans to retire in June 2016.
While Sensei Costanzo studied under Master Latimer, he simultaneously became a member of the Order of Isshynryu under the direction and counsel of Master Walter “Toby” Cooling. He currently holds the rank of Hachi Dan (8th degree) black belt in the OI.
Sensei Costanzo is proficient in Isshynryu hand and weapons kata’s in addition to his expertise in Jujitsu, self-defense techniques, including hand, knife, and firearms. He has also honed his skills in deep breathing exercises, applying them into the ancient form Liuhe Bafa.
From this background, Sensei Costanzo collaborated with Master Latimer and Sensei John McDonald in creating the Chi Ryu Jujitsu system which melds techniques/concepts from the Order of Isshinryu teachings, Jujitsu, Liuhe Bafa, and self-defense ippons developed in Master Latimer’s dojo.
Sensei John Costanzo has been a martial arts instructor under the banner of the OI for the last 30 years, teaching in Long Island, NY and currently has a non-profit dojo at the Woodbridge Community Center in New Jersey.
Sensei Costanzo has a son, Matthew and a daughter, Dawn, five grandchildren and resides in Union NJ.