About Oceanside

Our vision

Oceanside Jiu-Jitsu was created from a shared vision between 4 friends passionate about No-Gi Jiu-Jitsu.

The aim of the club is to create a sanctuary for its members, while providing high level techniques, support and a family environment.

No-Gi at its best

At Oceanside we specialize in No-Gi, which is a form of Jiu-Jitsu that doesn't require a traditional unform; any old rashguard and boardshorts will do.

This makes it much easier and more fun for new people to begin their Jiu-Jitsu journey.

  • It doesn't require an expensive traditional uniform.
  • The rashguard and board shorts are great at allowing the body breathe and cool down faster.
  • It simplifies the initial learning curve as there are less gripping techniques required to learn.

No-Gi is an exciting element of Jiu-Jitsu that is currently experiencing an amazing explosion of interest and technical evolution globally.

Professor Craig Jones

Craig Jones


Our professor Craig Jones is an Australian black belt under Lachlan Giles, he holds titles from IBJJF and Polaris Pro Grappling, took 4th place at the 2017 ADCC World Championship, and more recently took Silver in the 2019 ADCC World Championship.

He has victories over notable combat sports competitors such as Keenan Cornelius, Leondro Lo, Rousimar Palhares, Jake Shields, and Chael Sonnen.

He does not currently live in New Zealand, but occasionally travels to Christchurch for grading and seminars.


John Lentz

Head Coach

Since the age of 18 John has been practising Jiu-Jitsu throughout New Zealand and Australia.

After being diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis in 2014, John was unsure if he would be able to continue his Jiu-Jitsu journey. He has been able to manage this condition and now understands the struggle and hard work it takes to come back from adversity.

John has claimed multiple NZ titles in No-Gi with his game being very submission based. Research and development is something John continuously does to improve his game.

John has recently gained his brown belt under Craig Jones.

Hayden Smith

Head Coach

Hayden started his martial arts journey in 2009 towards the end of his teenage years.

He originally started in the striking art of Muay Thai Kickboxing where he was quickly introduced to the grappling art of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.

Quickly he fell in love with the sport due to the “super power” ability of a smaller person being able to defend and even submit people a lot larger than themselves.

10 years later and Hayden still loves BJJ even more so than when he first started.

He has recently been given his brown belt under Craig Jones and has multiple NZ purple belt national titles in both Gi and No-Gi.

Hayden assures that Jiu-Jitsu will save your life in one form or another.

Kieran Smith


Kieran began his martial arts journey by practicing Muay Thai Kickboxing. However, in 2010 at the gym he was training in he noticed Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu being practiced on the mats so wanted to give it a go, instantly falling in love with the sport.

He fell in love with the aspect of being able to control a much bigger opponent and submitting them whenever he wanted to.

As a kid Kieran was very skinny and quite self-conscious about his physical appearance. He always wanted to be the guy with muscles and a 6 pack. BJJ not only gave Kieran confidence in defending himself but also built his physical frame.

He has recently received his purple belt under Craig Jones and hopes to get his black belt within the next 5 years, plus compete on a regular basis all over the world.

Kristian Carson


Kris is what you would call a Jiu-Jitsu nerd; always researching and watching videos to improve his game in his spare time.

Having such a great passion for Jiu-Jitsu, Kris was able to achieve a lot more than most in a short amount of time. Kris quickly progressed through the ranks while gaining blue belt NZ National Gi and No-Gi titles.

Kris is currently a blue belt and believes this is just the beginning of his Jiu- Jitsu journey.

Tristan Hamer

Wrestling Coach

Tristan brings a different perspective to the sport of Jiu-Jitsu, having trained and competed across multiple grappling codes he is able to provide expert knowledge surrounding the standing aspect of grappling.

He joined Oceanside from the very beginning, signing his son up to the kid’s classes. It was a short while later that Tristan was bought on as Oceanside’s head wrestling coach, due to his willingness to implement a wrestling game into the gym.

Tristan respects the level of submission grappling and the No-Gi aspect that Oceanside brings to the Jiu-Jitsu community. He has made it his responsibility to provide Oceanside members with the foundations of stability and balance to their Jiu Jitsu game.

Tristan has recently been given his blue belt under Craig Jones.

Richard Clark

Kids Coach

Richard’s first taste of martial arts began in 2007 with Muay Thai, he then quickly transitioned into competing at an amateur level in both Muay Thai and Boxing. On top of this, Richard also started to take up Mixed Martial Arts under local Christchurch legend Karl Webber.

12 years later while working in New Brighton, Richard stumbled across Oceanside while at their first location in the surf club. All it took was a couple of lunch time classes and Richard was hooked into the world of No Gi Jiu-Jitsu.

Richard has always enjoyed the competitive side to Martial Arts as it provides him with direction, discipline and he feels it has made a massive improvement not only to his physical abilities but also his mental strength. So far Richard has had great competition success within a short period of time, but he believes this is down to two things; having access to high level training partners/coaches and having a solid/consistent work ethic.

Richard hopes to pass on these two things to both kids and adults in the future.

Cayden Baxter

Assistant Kids Coach

Cayden comes from a family of martial arts obsessed people. However, he never really took a shine to anything until being introduced to Jiu-Jitsu.

Being a typical Leo star sign, Cayden has a strong desire to lend a hand, help out where needed and lead by example.

Cayden has only just begun his Jiu-Jitsu journey but is able to provide assistance in the kids classes by being a leading example of what an Oceanside member should be.

Gym location

96 Byron Street, Sydenham, Christchurch