Who Are We?
SBG NorCal offers classes, training and coaching for all ages and levels in mixed martial arts (MMA), kickboxing, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, functional fitness, kettlebell training, and conditioning. It’s been our lifelong dream to run a gym and we think of our students as an extension of our family.
SBG NorCal is a member of Straight Blast Gym International and was formed by Lily & Alan Pagle in 2002. Our philosophy is based on our firm conviction that learning and growth – both physical and mental – can take place at any age or from any starting point. All that is required is good coaching and a supportive environment where you can learn skills and enjoy training. That’s what we provide and that makes consistency on your part easy! We’re ready to help you reach your training goals.
Lily Pagle is SBG NorCal’s co-founder and Head Coach. A life-long athlete, Lily has over 25 years experience in martial arts. In 2010, SBG International founder Matt Thornton awarded Lily a black belt in Jiu-Jitsu, making her the very first female in SBG history to do so. Lily enjoys traveling around the world, teaching students of all ages. She holds a 1st degree black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and a 2nd degree black belt in Judo.
Alan Pagle has been training and teaching martial arts since 1973. While his background includes black belts in traditional martial arts his collegiate boxing and earning his 2nd degree black belt in judo are the biggest influences on his own training and coaching style. Alan recently earned a brown belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Yes, he is a retired Berkeley police officer.
SBGi is about people, and our goal is to offer the cutting edge in self defense, combat athletics, fitness, and personal growth, to every type of human body that walks through our door. Not just 22 Year old Athletes (although they will certainly find their niche here as well), but to professionals who have to work 45 hour weeks. To women of all ages. To older people, looking to get into shape, have fun, and learn self defense. To children of all ages who can learn the Arts in a positive atmosphere of friendship and fun.
Straight Blast Blog
In early September, the job I held for close to eight years ended. The reasons why are inconsequential, especially with two months to reflect. The reality was not: the salary and benefits I’d grown accustomed to, as well as the security of the position, were gone after almost a decade. I’d need to look for […]
Jiu-jitsu isn’t a game of feet but a game of inches – sometimes even less. Coach Alan put it this way: “A black belt can execute within inches what takes other people feet.” This point was emphasized when we drilled half-guard escapes during a recent Saturday class. Now, being on the bottom in half guard […]
One of the best parts of jiu-jitsu is the time after class ends when the coaches talk to us about what we’ve been learning and other aspects of training. At this point I’m tired and feel good about finishing another day of training, even if there were elements that were challenging or techniques I didn’t […]