Who is Jerome Mackey


Why should you believe that this former concert pianist can teach your children how to defend themselves?

“Because he is one of the best, most experienced, and most widely acclaimed self-defense instructors in the world;  and thousands of parents have paid him up to $1875 each to do just that”.


Jerome Mackey is a pretty great guy and really knows his stuff.

Black Belt Magazine said:

“Jerome Mackey is to self defense what Colonel Sanders is to fried chicken. . . (he) manages three Manhattan schools, franchises eight others and instructs between 4000 and 5000 students.” 

Actually, it’s more like 50 schools with 23 franchises and, in some years, he’s taught as many as 10,000 students.

But in 1956, before opening his very first self-defense school, he spent six years at Juilliard with the expectation of becoming a concert pianist.  Only after graduation did he discover that he couldn’t earn a living as a concert pianist.  So – what to do???

He got the idea, which seemed a little crazy idea at the time, that wealthy New Yorkers might pay him to teach their children Judo.  So, in addition to teaching piano, he also opened a self-defense school.

Since World War II hadn’t been over very long, any subject involving the Japanese stirred deep emotions inside most Americans.   But New Yorkers knew how important it was for their children to learn how to protect themselves.

Not long afterward, Life Magazine became aware of Mackey’s unique school (the first one of its kind in New York) and published the following article showing American children learning the Japanese arts of “self-defense” and enjoying it.


The day after that article appeared, parents lined up outside his door with cash in hand, and literally begged him to accept their children into his classes.  Some also wanted him to teach their kids how to play the piano.

 Since the demand for self-defense was running high, he went to Japan in search of great teachers and was the first American entrepreneur to actually establish an office in Japan, employ and bring back the world’s most outstanding Japanese Judo, Karate and Aikido experts as teachers.


(left to right) Matsumoto, Shiina and Yonezuka were the first to arrive.  They spoke no English at all but their skills were so amazing that the students immediately fell in love with them.

 Soon, Look Magazine followed up with the following article naming him “Mr. Judo”.


This article (above) showed Mackey practicing with 5th degree Black Belt Shunichi Ito, teaching martial arts to a class of kids and giving a Piano performance.

 Readers Digest followed with a feature story


And New York Magazine called his school:


“The General Motors of its field – the largest, most elaborate, most comfortable and most successful dojo in New York.”


Actually, Mackey’s NY dojo was one of the most famous and successful dojos in the world.




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