Richmond Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and Self-Defense Academy
I just recently started training at this school regularly, but I actually took a few classes several years ago.
Location-wise its in an easily accessible area near VCU campus in Richmond, VA. Parking is street parking. The gym isn't huge and has plenty of students, so it can get crowded at times, but there are several options for classes.
I think that the instructor is superb. His name is Eric Burdo, I don't know his history but I do know that he competes. The business manager of the gym is a woman named Liz Sussan, who is a BJJ purple belt preparing for the Pan-Ams this year. Shes also had the gym involved in some charity work.
Teaching in the fundamentals classes is very thorough and step-by-step which is good for me because I am a slow learner. Class are 90mins and involve warm-up; break-fall practice; demonstration of 1-3 techniques; drilling the technique with partners; and ends with 15 mins of rolling. Plenty of blue belts in the gym, lots of white belts; several purple belts. Two of the instructors are black belts.
They also have a Muay Thai program but I don't take those classes. Recently had a student go to the finals at WKA in Richmond. They do seem to train students to compete at various grappling and kick-boxing tourneys, and some students seem to have done well.
No weapons training that I've seen.
Got a pic to put in the review?
Pic of the Gym
Originally Posted by Phrost
This pic (if it works) is a pretty good look at what the gym looks like on the inside.
Lineage is also worth mentioning. The head of the gym and one of the other black belt level instructors are black-belts under Julio 'Foca' Fernandez, who himself is a black belt under Carlson Gracie. They wrote a book together called BJJ For Experts Only or something like that.
Example of Instruction
Below is a youtube video from Richmond BJJ's "Technique of the Month" video series. It is a great example of the detailed, step-by-step instruction that Eric Burdo provides in his classes.
I visited there a few years ago. I think I was a brown belt at the time. Nice people and Eric is a good instructor.