About Us


Martial Arts

We teach Systema, a military grade martial art developed in Russia and used by top special operations units.    We offer unique solutions to violent encounters.  By learning Systema you will become stronger physically, mentally, and psychologically. You will learn the skill sets necessary to 

protect yourself, and loved ones.


Healthy lifestyle promotion.

 We teach the health system of Systema which includes: breathing practices, diet, cold water dowsing, calisthenics, fasting, and meditation.  These practices create vibrant health, and the ability to manage stress better.  They provide optimal functioning to the physiological systems of the body, and in many cases heal old injuries.  The body begins to function optimally  stress, pain, and negative emotions disappear.  


Teaching Methods

The training methods have been intrinsically designed to work in civilian life.  A lot of research was put into how to teach Systema.  How we learn and retain new information quickly was studied.  You will walk away from every class with usable information that can be applied immediately.  The skills learned can be taken into all aspects of your life be it: self defense, business, family, or outdoor activities. 


Our philosophy

 The definition of Excellerent is: becoming outstanding or very good quickly.  Learning self defense skills should not take years, and you don't need to fight in a ring to get them. For those of us dealing with injuries, or age related issues, jumping into the ring or on the mat to learn self defense is simply; not safe. 

We value safety among all else. "Do no harm" is one of the main principles of Systema. On that note, we route out violent and irrational people quickly.  They never stay long and are not welcome here.  We feel that aggressive individuals and situations are not conducive to learning quickly.  We offer an environment which allows you to explore your limits safely.  Many gyms and martial arts schools leave you physically beaten, and more exhausted  mentally then when you came in.  With us you will not only drastically improve your self defense capabilities, you will become healthier doing so.  


Your Instructor

John Rigakos began martial arts at the age of ten with taekwondo and then later Karate, in which he earned a black belt.  In his twenties he studied Kung Fu and Hapkido, earning High ranks in both.  Training in some of the roughest martial arts schools in Toronto Ontario, he sustained many injuries along the way.  He became disheartened with the "tough guy" personas that pervaded these organizations at the time, and became more interested in healing his many injuries. He studied Shiatsu massage, and Chinese medicine. He later added Reiki and Internal kung fu to his practice routine.  They were all beneficial, but none of them provided a true healing experience.  Discovering Systema in 1991 was like opening a gift that continued giving.  It healed all of his past injuries and asked only one thing; that he keep practicing.  He felt it was so wonderfully laid out, that he wants to now share it with everyone.  John has been trained and authorized to teach Systema by Vladimir Vasiliev, Director and chief instructor of Systema Headquarters, Toronto. 

If you have questions about any of the programs we offer, please send us a message. We would love to hear from you.

Excellerent Systems

Victoria, British Columbia, Canada

John Rigakos (250) 588-7187 HOURS Monday - Friday: 9am - 9pm Saturday: 9am - 5pm Sunday: Workshops and Seminars

If you are travelling in the Toronto area please visit Toronto HQ, for the highest level of mastery in this art.

Toronto School of Russian Martial Art Art

39 Glen Cameron Road Unit #2

Thornhill, Ontario

L3T 1P1


Get in Touch!