Meet our team! Our friendly instructors at Bentonville Krav Maga are here to build you up, not tear you down. Every team member takes our instructing very seriously, we recognize that we are quite literally attempting to give you the tools to save your life. We love what we do and take pride in continuing our own education, and in making that knowledge simple and accessible.
Russ has over 30 years of experience in martial arts.
He is a certified Expert Level 2 of Krav Maga, a certified Instructor of Israeli Tactical Knife Fighting, and an Assistant Instructor of Israeli Combat Shooting.
He holds black belts in Kenpo Karate, Taekwondo, and Combative Jujitsu.
He is a 2012 inductee of the Martial Arts Hall of Fame and the 2013 NAGA national points grappling champion.
Elle has 15 years of experience in martial arts.
She is a certified Associate Level 2 Instructor of Krav Maga, a certified Instructor of Israeli Tactical Knife Fighting, and currently holds a blue belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. She is a student of Infighting and Tai Chi.
Shaina has 6 years of experience in Krav Maga.
She is a certified Associate Level 2 Instructor of Krav Maga. She holds an Associate of Exercise Science degree and has eight years of experience in the fitness industry as a group fitness instructor and as a personal trainer. In addition to teaching Krav Maga, Shaina is also a Zumba Instructor. She has a passion for fitness and teaching people to defend themselves.
Shawn Pretat began his martial arts career in high school, practicing Jiu Jitsu and Pancrase Shoot Fighting. Upon joining the military in 1997, he dedicated himself to training in Russian Combat Sambo for the next 9 years. In 2007 he became a Master Combatives Instructor for the U.S. Army, training combat team operations as well as coaching and participating in traveling team competition.
Shawn started his path in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu in 2006, learning from Jason “Blind Fury” Keaton under the lineage of Renata Tavares. Having moved to El Paso, TX he transferred under the mentoring of black belts Phil Cardella and Steve Hordinski, while being belted directly from the legend Relson Gracie himself.
During his military service Shawn was able to participate in seminars all over the world and train with Brazilian Jiu Jitsu experts Royce Gracie, Ralek Gracie, Bob Bass, Rener Gracie, Rigan Machado and several others. He continued to expand his training and expertise, traveling to be certified in IKI Krav Maga under Moche Kratz and Rob Peterson, as well as studying American Kenpo Karate with Master Michael Pick, among others. In that time period, he also opened and established two academies, which are still open and have been transferred to qualified instructors.
Being technically and tactically sound, Shawn was selected to run military base programs as the Head Combatives Instructor for the U.S. Army. He was responsible for training soldiers every day, from basic to elite teams, in defensive and offensive fighting techniques, room clearing operations and small cell extraction with SRT (Special Response Teams).
While training soldiers and traveling he accomplished many victories with his team. He is a Pro Fighter and Army Champion at several bases around the world, has won several BJJ tournaments, including taking First Place in the NAGA Worlds Advanced Division in 2010.
Shawn retired from the military in 2017 after serving 20 honorable years. Because of his passion for teaching and helping others, he now shares the knowledge and expertise his years in the military bestowed on him with the private sector.