About Us


Neutral Ground Sheboygan was founded in 2013 as club that was hidden within a workplace basement. Since then, it was grown into the premier Brazilian Jiu Jitsu school in the Sheboygan area. With a root in the Helio Gracie/Perdro Sauer tradition, the curriculum has expanded. The style of Jiu Jitsu that is expressed at Neutral Ground Sheboygan is based on that of Neutral Ground founder Jon Friedland, where there is a high emphasis of movement and flow.

Neutral Ground Sheboygan is led by Jeff Sass, a lifelong martial artist, who has added his own style and interpretation to the art, which emphasizes the precision of techniques combined with a relaxed mental state and a philosophy of non-attachment.

There are several team instructors who also present this highly effective martial discipline to the students in a non-threatening, relaxed and friendly environment.

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is an art, self-defense system, sport, and a path toward self-development. Training in this art helps students become calm, resilient, flexible, and assertive, especially while facing obstacles or adversity.

We offer classes for kids, teens, and adults.


Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is a refined martial art that emerged from pre-WWII Japanese Jujutsu / Judo. The art was brought to Brazil by a man named Mitsuyo Maeda, an expert in Jujutsu/Judo. He befriended a man named Gastao Gracie who helped him get established in Brazil. To repay him, Maeda taught Gracie’s sons (most notably Carlos Gracie) the art of Jiu Jitsu (Jujutsu).

Later, Helio Gracie, the youngest and weakest of the Gracie brothers, modified the art to allow him to perform the techniques without the use of strength or athleticism. The result was a refinement of the old art of Japanese Jujutsu into a new and different art of Gracie Jiu Jitsu (Brazilian Jiu Jitsu). The Gracie family then brought the art to the United States. Now, there are many who study and contribute to the art’s ongoing development.

BJJ Founders


The BJJ practitioner specializes in being able to neutralize an opponent by taking them to the ground. Once there, the BJJ practitioner is very comfortable and can move like a shark through water. Most opponents are out of their element on the ground and can easily be controlled and finished.

Defensively, this art focuses on protecting ourselves, escaping unfavorable positions and neutralizing our opponent’s strengths. Offensively, it focuses on maintaining a dominant position and attacking for submissions to end the fight. This can be done by choking the opponent unconcious or rendering cartain limbs useless by breaking them. However, before these devestating consequences occur the opponent usually gives up, or submits, by tapping out. This is all done in the most humane way possible and is why Jiu Jitsu translates to “The Gentle Art.”

BJJ Founders


  • Mutual benefit and respect
  • Take care of your training partner
  • Stay calm
  • Take risks
  • Accept failure graciously
  • Keep an empty cup
  • Tap, and be thankful
  • Repetition/drill (less talk, more action)
  • No shortcuts to mastery


  • Push/pull
  • Connect/disconnect
  • Angles/leverage/distractions
  • Flow (path of least resistance)
  • Don’t insist (non-attachment)
  • Be aware of your breathing


NEUTRAL GROUND was founded by Professor Jon Friedland, a 3rd degree Black Belt under Master Pedro Sauer.

Just like Neutral Ground HQ, Neutral Ground Sheboygan is dedicated to evolving its members to a higher level inch by inch, day by day. We have a healthy team-oriented vibe and stress mutual benefit and respect between each other. Neutral Ground is a healthy environment where its members are refined through the art of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. We focus heavily on precise technique and flow, not on brute strength or stubborness. We strive to “Flow Like Water” and handle opponents with calmness and efficiency.

Neutral Ground also has schools elsewhere:

BJJ Founders

Always assume that your opponent is going to be bigger, stronger and faster than you;
so that you learn to rely on technique, timing and leverage rather than brute strength.

Helio Gracie

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