Head Instructor - Lori O'Connell Sensei
Lori O'Connell Sensei holds a 5th degree black belt in Can-Ryu Jiu-jitsu and has trained in martial arts for over 20 years. She has trained under Ed Hiscoe Shihan (head of Can-Ryu Jiu-jitsu) in Ottawa and with Steve Hiscoe Shihan in Chilliwack. She completed instructor training with Professor Georges Sylvain (founder of Can-Ryu) and holds her full instructor's license.
As part of her involvement with Professor Georges Sylvain's development of the Can-Ryu 2000 program, Lori was one of the main demonstration models in several of his training videos including The Persuader Key Holder Self-Defense System, Police Pressure Point Techniques and The Use & Application of Pepper Spray Against Dogs.
Lori has taught martial arts for over 17 years in Canada and abroad. She started teaching at her home dojo in Ottawa, moving on to teach at the University of Ottawa. She later moved to Iwaki, Japan, where she lived and worked on the JET Program for 3 years. She started a club there, teaching both Japanese people and foreigners living there. After she finished her teaching contract in Japan, she moved to Vancouver where she eventually founded West Coast Jiu-jitsu in January 2006 (recently renamed 'Pacific Wave Jiu-jitsu'), which has grown steadily since it started to become the dojo it is today.
In addition to Jiu-jitsu, Lori has trained in a variety of other arts to broaden her perspective, including BJJ, MMA, Western Boxing, Shotokan Karate, Aikido, Hapkido, Taichi, Taekwondo, and more besides. Her original introduction to the world of martial arts pre-dating her Jiu-jitsu training was western fencing, in which she competed at the national level and in the university circuit for 7 years. She is currently doing regular training in Shorinji Kan Jiu-jitsu as a supplement to her activities at her own dojo. She firmly believes in continual learning and progress in the martial arts.
In addition to her martial arts training and teaching, Lori has published 2 books. Her most recent book, When the Fight Goes to the Ground: Jiu-jitsu Strategies & Tactics for Self-Defense, was written for Tuttle Publishing, an international publisher of martial arts books. She also wrote Weapons of Opportunity, about her personal experiences teaching and training in the martial arts. Lori also writes regularly on the dojo's martial arts blog and on her personal blog, Giv'er 365 about committing to selfless giving.
In addition to her martial arts background, she also earned a BA in Communication, carries Level-1 Coaching certification, and is certified through St. John's Ambulance in first aid and CPR in the rare case of class emergencies. Lori is also a volunteer for Big Sisters of BC Lower Mainland.
"I don't have size or strength on my side, but I've learned to make up for it with technique and tenacity." -Lori O'Connell Sensei
Instructor - Chris Olson Sensei
Chris Olson Sensei has been training in Jiu-jitsu for over 12 years, and holds the rank of Nidan (2nd degree black belt) in Can-Ryu (under Lori O'Connell Sensei) and Shodan (1st degree black belt) in Shorinji Kan Jiu jitsu (under Andy Dobie Sensei, head of Jitsu Canada). He has 8 years experience both leading and assisting in the instruction of classes. When not teaching classes, Chris works as a security professional in the Vancouver area. He is also certified through St. John's Ambulance in first aid and CPR in the rare case of class emergencies.
Chris started training at Pacific Wave in 2006, having moved to the Vancouver area from his native Ottawa. He held the rank of brown belt in Shorinji Kan at the time, but with no dojos of that style in the area, he took up training with us so he could maintain his Jiu-jitsu training. Since then, 2 Shorinji Kan dojos have opened up in the area and he came to assist the dojos in whatever ways he could, while maintaining his Can-ryu training at Pacific Wave. Chris eventually earned his Shodan in Shorinji Kan in Dec. 2009. The following fall, he earned the same rank in Can-ryu, becoming the 1st person to hold a black belt rank in both styles. He also has a Bachelor of Journalism degree from Carleton University.