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Name: Maximo Castro, Jr. (Mr. Max)

Job Title: Martial Arts Instructor and Recess Enhancement Program (REP) Coach

Asphalt Green Department: Sports and Community Programs

Asphalt Green Campus: Battery Park City and Upper East Side


Q: How long have you been working at Asphalt Green?

A: I’ve been at the Battery Park City campus since it opened in 2013 and at the Upper East Side location since 2014.


Q: What do you do at Asphalt Green? What are some of your responsibilities?

A: I have two roles: martial arts instructor and Recess Enhancement Program (REP) coach. As a martial arts coach, I teach kids basic grappling, blocks, strikes, and kicks. As a REP coach, I go to New York City public schools and run games for recess.


Q: What is your favorite aspect of working at Asphalt Green?

A: The thing I enjoy most about teaching martial arts is seeing kids grow—watching them get better, not only as martial artists but also as leaders. 


Q: What is one of your fondest memories of working at Asphalt Green so far?

A: There isn’t one specific memory that comes to mind. Every time kids tell me they had a great time in my class or at recess is pretty awesome.


Q: How did you get into the sports industry?

A: I started training in martial arts when I was 22 and had one amateur muay thai fight. I’ve also trained fighters to get ready for their fights.


Q: Who inspires you?

A: The kids inspire me. I always try my best to ensure that the kids have an amazing time in my class. I want them to talk about how awesome Mr. Max is when they leave.


Q: Do you play any other sports?

A: I’ve played in kickball and dodgeball leagues.  


Q: What is your favorite sport to watch?

A: I enjoy watching MMA and football.  


Q: Who is your favorite sports team? Why?

A: My favorite sports team is the Green Bay Packers. I was a huge Brett Favre fan as a kid, and I stuck with the team even after he left.


Q: What is the best sports tip you’ve received or favorite tip to share with players?

A: Don’t be afraid to fail.  


Q: What is a fun fact about Mr. Max?

A: I can do a handstand and walk on my hands.


Q: What is your favorite food?

A: I love cheese.


Q: What is your favorite quote?

A: "I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times." -Bruce Lee