Mr. Rivera started in the martial arts at the age of 7
Although the channel 5 Saturday afternoon television shows were his first classes, he didnÆt enroll in a karate school until he was 13 years old. After just three weeks, he achieved his yellow belt and a black belt in under two years. By the age of 15 he was the top ranked fighter in NY & NJ. By the age of 16 he was the focus of an amateur national karate team. That year, he won the Junior National and World Titles of the N.A.S.K.A (North American Sport Karate Association) and N.B.I competition circuit.
At the age of 18, Mr. Rivera became the youngest Middleweight World Champion, a title he won again in 1993. Due to injury he missed the 1994 competitions but returned to win the title again in 1995. Mr.Rivera retired in 1996 as the #1 at Middleweight Champion to pursue the dream that would become Excel Martial Arts. He currently holds black belts in two styles and with a 5th degree in Chinese Goju.
Along the way, Mr.Rivera has won some of the most prestigious Karate Tournaments:
- U.S Open
- The Battle of Atlanta
- The Diamond Nationals
- The Empire State Nationals