6 Time Hall of Fame Inductions
10 Time Best Business Award
2019 Highest Rated Martial Arts school in NJ

Our Team

School owner/Chief Instructor – Robert Nichols has been studying martial arts for over 29 years. He is as passionate about learning now then ever. Mr. Nichols currently holds black belts from various martial arts schools and in different styles of martial arts. He is a fifth-degree black belt in TaeKwonDo as well as a seventh-degree black belt in Ninjutsu. He is currently the highest-ranking SAMI Knife Fighting Instructor in America, and in 2017 became the first sanctioned SAMI Training Center owner in America. In 2018, he also became licensed in SAMI Panatukan concepts, SAMI Axe and Tomahawk Fighting Concepts, and SAMI Kapap concept. In 2019 he also learned the SAMICS Expandable Baton Concept for Law enforcement. A multiple time inductee of the United States Martial Arts Hall Of Fame as “Instructor of the year,” Mr. Nichols has proudly run Union UTA since its opening in 2001. He was listed in and on the cover of the 2020 Action Martial Arts Hall of Honors history book. An anti-bullying consultant and martial arts business consultant, Mr. Nichols married his high school sweetheart in 2006 and lives with her and his daughter in western NJ. An active member in the community, both in his hometown and in Union, Mr. Nichols believes deeply in the value of martial arts training as a vehicle for self-improvement.

Get started today with our FREE Trials! Experience our martial arts training program first hand and see how Union UTA Martial Arts/SAMI Union can change your life! For children, teens, and adults, we have the action-packed, fun, and disciplined classes for you!

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Leadership Team

The pride of our martial arts school is our interactive leadership program. Our leadership program helps students gain confidence and focus by providing them with tools to become leaders. Our leadership team is the group of instructors that run our martial arts classes daily. Our martial arts school boasts one of the largest instructor staff for an individual martial arts school in the state of New Jersey. Each instructor is a certified martial arts instructor and trained personally by Mr. Nichols to teach our curriculum. Instructors range in age — though some may seem young, they have all passed a written, verbal, and practical evaluation. Instructors can be recognized by the colored wristbands or belt markings they wear. Different colors denote the different certifications that instructors hold. Instructors should be able to answer many questions about curriculum, events, and much more and can be a very helpful resource to parents. As well as junior instructors, we also have office personnel that are there to answer questions and assist parents in any way possible. Please feel free to speak to them about anything. More important than anything, our leadership team serves as mentors and activists in our community. Being an active member of this team is the ultimate goal of all of our students.

Our martial arts school opened in 2001 and since then we‘ve grown tremendously! We’ve become a school of more than:

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Large Staff of Assistants

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Certified Instructors

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Time Winner of Best Business from U.S Commerce

  • No testing or belt fees
  • Low monthly rates
  • Large multiple family member discounts
  • No “locked-in” contracts
  • Large staff of 85 assistant instructors, including 22 certified instructors
  • Open since 2001
  • Extra workout floor expansion in 2011 and again in 2014, 2015, and 2019
  • We focus on leadership skills, discipline, respect, confidence, character building, and much more
  • Specialized adult martial arts classes offered in combatives, knife training, firearms disarms, and no-nonsense personal protection
  • 10-time winner of Best Business from United States Commerce Association
  • We teach a variety of martial arts styles including: American Taekwondo, SAMI Combat Systems, Authentic Ninjutsu, ground tactics, kickboxing, and tactical combat training
  • 20 different weapons and tools
  • America’s first SAMI Combat Systems International Training Center
  • We have been teaching anti-bullying and character development in public and private schools for over 10 years, reaching approximately 5,000 kids a year


In 2001, Union UTA started as a traditional Taekwondo martial arts school. With great respect to this worldwide martial art, we choose to have more of an adaptive curriculum, evolving and adjusting to the needs of our students. Our martial arts training program has grown to include aspects of kickboxing, Ninjitsu, Judo, grappling, Kali, combative knife concepts, and MMA-style fighting. Not only do our students work toward their black belts in our system, but through the practice of many aspects of martial arts, focus on improving themselves as individuals.

In 2017, Union UTA became the first SAMI Combat Systems International Training Center in the Western world! With the partnership with SAMI founder, Peter Weckauf, Union UTA truly became an international school.

With the variety of martial arts we study, Union UTA has become host to MMA-style fight night events, where competitors from our school and others train for and participate in MMA-inspired matches.

Our organization not only benefits the students in our martial arts classes but also spends time giving back. For instance, the organization successfully raising over $50,000 for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. In the past five years, we raised over $450,000 for children’s charities. Other charities we sponsored were March of Dimes, COSAC, and various children’s cancer organizations. Union UTA has always strived to give back to our community. With our leadership team spending time on community service projects.

Union UTA also hosts a number of other events annually, such as tournaments, demos, parties, and testing. Union UTA also participates in many local events, fairs, and outings. We feel a personal responsibility to be involved with our community and its members.

With different goals for both our children and adults, Union UTA’s martial arts school focuses on each individual’s goals and growth. So regardless of a student’s reasons for joining our program, it’s our commitment to excellence and service that help our students achieve. Contact us today to learn more and sign up for martial arts classes!