Choke Lab Academy

Josef "Ze Cobra" Manuel

PROFESSOR - ATHLETE

ROBSON MOURA’S HIGHEST RANKING AND MOST DECORATED AMERICAN BLACK BELT.

Professor Josef Manuel has been involved in martial arts for over 20 years. He first started with boxing, but began to question what to do in a fight when faced with a clinch or takedown. It was while watching the first edition of the Ultimate Fighting Championship that he discovered Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. In 2001, Manuel began training with Professor Mario Lemos, a student of Master Rickson and Royler of the famed Gracie family, who helped him become a champion. In 2005, he was introduced to 7x Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu World Champion Robson “Robinho” Moura from the famous Nova Uniao Academy in Brazil, with whom he has trained and traveled extensively.


After years of hard work and competition, Manuel earned his Black Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu under 7x World Champion Robson Moura in 2009 and became Moura’s first American Black Belt World Champion & RMNU association representative. Manuel was honored with a certificate from the founders of Nova Uniao (Andre Pedeneiras and Wendell Alexander) on April 24, 2010 for his outstanding performance in the competition circuit. This official recognition established Manuel as a Black Belt representative of the esteemed Nova Uniao Jiu-Jitsu Academy.

Manuel actively competes in tournaments and continues to improve his Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu with the support of his coach and Professor Robson Moura. He has been a Certified Referee with the International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation and Abu Dhabi Combat Club since 2002.


Manuel has also trained soldiers from the United States Army and was awarded a Certificate of Achievement in Army Combative Level 1 and Level 2. He has also trained Federal Agents and Local Law Enforcement Officials and has competed and won numerous Gi and No-Gi tournaments, including the New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania State Championships, Grapplers Quest, Ultimate Grappling Challenge, and North American Grapplers Association, as well as the ADCC Trials, IBJJF New Jersey Open, New York Open, Europeans, Pans, and World Championships of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. He has also won numerous Open Weight Class Titles, demonstrating his mastery and embodying the true essence of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Today, he proudly leads the newly established Team Chokelab association, continuing to pursue his ambition of becoming a highly respected athlete and mentor in the Jiu-Jitsu community.

Actively Updating

Stay Tuned For More Titles

2024

  • BLACK BELT IBJJF NEW JERSEY OPEN
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • BLACK BELT IBJJF NEW YORK OPEN
    GOLD MEDALIST

2023

  • BLACK BELT IBJJF NEW HAVEN OPEN
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • BLACK BELT IBJJF ORLANDO OPEN
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • BLACK BELT IBJJF ATLANTA OPEN
    GOLD MEDALIST

2022

  • BLACK BELT IBJJF NEW HAVEN OPEN
    OPEN CLASS GOLD MEDALIST
  • BLACK BELT IBJJF NEW HAVEN OPEN
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • FIGHT 2 WIN 214 SUPERFIGHT CHAMPION
  • BLACK BELT IBJJF CHARLOTTE INTERNATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • BLACK BELT IBJJF ATLANTA INTERNATIONAL OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • BLACK BELT IBJJF INDIANAPOLIS INTERNATIONAL OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • BLACK BELT IBJJF BOISE INTERNATIONAL OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • BLACK BELT IBJJF PANS CHAMPIONSHIP
    BRONZE MEDALIST

2021

  • BLACK BELT IBJJF MASTERS WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP
    SILVER MEDALIST

2013

  • BLACK BELT IBJJF NEW YORK SUMMER INTERNATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP
    SILVER MEDALIST
  • PRIDE BJJ CHAMPIONSHIP
    GOLD MEDALIST

2011

  • BLACK BELT IBJJF WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP
    BRONZE MEDALIST
  • BLACK BELT IBJJF MIAMI INTERNATIONAL OPEN
    SILVER MEDALIST
  • BLACK BELT LONG ISLAND PRIDE CHAMPIONSHIP
    OPEN WEIGHT SUPER-FIGHT
    SILVER MEDALIST
  • BLACK BELT IBJJF MONTREAL INTERNATIONAL OPEN
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • BLACK BELT IBJJF MONTREAL INTERNATIONAL OPEN – ABSOLUTE
    BRONZE MEDALIST
  • BLACK BELT IBJJF BOSTON
    INTERNATIONAL OPEN
    BRONZE MEDALIST
  • BLACK BELT LONG ISLAND PRIDE CHAMPIONSHIP
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • BLACK BELT IBJJF NEW YORK INTERNATIONAL OPEN
    SILVER MEDALIST

2010

  • ADCC TRIALS NO-GI ADVANCED
    BRONZE MEDALIST
  • BLACK BELT IBJJF NO-GI WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • BLACK BELT IBJJF NEW YORK INTERNATIONAL OPEN
    SILVER MEDALIST
  • BLACK BELT IBJJF EUROPEAN OPEN
    GOLD MEDALIST

2009

  • BLACK BELT IBJJF NO-GI WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • BLACK BELT IBJJF NO-GI PAN AMERICAN
    SILVER MEDALIST
  • BLACK BELT SUBMISSION SHOOTOUT
    LIGHT FEATHERWEIGHT NO – GI
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • BLACK BELT SUBMISSION SHOOTOUT
    LIGHT FEATHERWEIGHT NO – GI
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • ULTIMATE GRAPPLING CHALLENGE
    BLACK BELT SUPER-FIGHT
    SILVER MEDALIST
  • ULTIMATE GRAPPLING CHALLENGE
    BLACK BELT SUPER FIGHT NO-GI
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • BLACK BELT SUBMISSION SHOOTOUT NO – GI LIGHT FEATHERWEIGHT GOLD MEDALIST

2008

  • LONG ISLAND PRIDE
    SILVER MEDALIST
  • ULTIMATE GRAPPLING CHALLENGE
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • NEW JERSEY STATE BRAZILIAN JIU-JITSU TOURNAMENT
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • BATTLE AT THE BATTLESHIP
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • ULTIMATE GRAPPLING CHALLENGE
    SUPER FIGHT
    GOLD MEDALIST

2007

  • ULTIMATE GRAPPLING CHALLENGE
    SILVER MEDALIST
  • GRAPPLERS QUEST
    SILVER MEDALIST
  • ALLIED BJJ OPEN
    SILVER MEDALIST
  • LONG ISLAND PRIDE
    SILVER MEDALIST
  • ULTIMATE GRAPPLING CHALLENGE
    NO – GI OPEN CLASS SUPER FIGHT
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • GRAPPLERS QUEST “BEAST OF THE EAST” GOLD MEDALIST

2006

  • PENNSYLVANIA STATE CHAMPIONSHIPS – OPEN WEIGHT
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • PENNSYLVANIA STATE CHAMPIONSHIPS – SUPERFIGHT
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • NEW YORK STATE CHAMPIONSHIPS – OPEN WEIGHT
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • NEW YORK STATE CHAMPIONSHIPS – SUPERFIGHT
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • PENNSYLVANIA STATE CHAMPIONSHIPS -BLACK BELT SUPER-FIGHT
    SILVER MEDALIST
  • NEW YORK STATE CHAMPIONSHIPS – SUPERFIGHT
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • NEW YORK STATE NO-GI
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • NEW YORK STATE MASTERS NO-GI
    GOLD MEDALIST

2005

  • GRAPPLERS QUEST
    BRONZE MEDALIST
  • NAGA WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • NEW YORK STATE CHAMPIONSHIPS
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • GRAPPLERS QUEST
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • GRAPPLERS QUEST
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • NEW YORK STATE CHAMPIONSHIPS- FEATHERWEIGHT
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • NEW YORK STATE CHAMPIONSHIPS- LIGHTWEIGHT
    GOLD MEDALIST

2004

  • NAGA BATTLE OF THE BEACH
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • NEW YORK STATE CHAMPIONSHIPS
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • GRAPPLERS QUEST
    GOLD MEDALIST
  • NAGA