Welcome to Forteza! Welcome home!

Forteza Fitness, Physical Culture & Martial Arts, a unique studio in Ravenswood, Chicago blending cutting-edge knowledge with old school training. 

Forteza is an ancient Italian word meaning “fortress” or “stronghold”. At Forteza we help each person who comes through our door build their own personal stronghold; the stronghold of their body, mind and spirit.

We do that by being far more than an ordinary martial arts school or a gym.  Rather, we are:

  • A fitness studio that combines personal training and functional fitness with modern nutritional counseling, set in a beautiful, 5000 square foot, c.1900 facility;
  • Pioneers in the revival of 19th century “physical culture” – the combined use of calisthenics, Indian clubs, medicine balls, therapeutic gymnastics, body-weight exercises and games designed to create natural strength and grace with athletic performance;
  • The Midwest’s only full-time school for the study of traditional Western martial arts, including the fighting arts of the medieval knight, and Renaissance swordplay;
  • Home to Chicagoland’s only licensed instructor in MBC Self-defense System; a nationally known and respected method of hand, stick and knife defense designed for modern people with limited training time;
  • A gymuseum: a unique “living museum” of antique exercise equipment and an inspirational gallery of 19th century prints portraying combat sport athletes in training;
  • An international center for education on the rich and sophisticated martial traditions of Western Civilization;
  • Home to an innovative and eclectic series of workshops, lectures and unique social events.

Above all, though, we are a fellowship and home-away-from-home for anyone who has ever been fascinated by these subjects and wants to challenge themselves to do more and be more

While our website serves to get prospective students the 411 on what we teach, when we teach it and how to join, our blog and Tumblr page are a growing archive on the Forteza experience in word, photo and video. It is also an ever-growing library of articles, martial arts techniques, old-school fitness workouts, nutritional tips, that we hope you will come to time and time again.

Welcome to Forteza! Welcome home.

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