Credit: Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic

A New York City gym teacher has apologized to Jersey Shore star Nicole Polizzi (a.k.a. "Snooki") for punching her in the face.

After seeing a video of the attack (which has been cut from tonight's episode), "I was sick to my stomach," Brad Ferro, 24, tells the New York Post. "I couldn't believe that I'd ever do anything like that. I was raised to act in a respectful manner to women."

"I deeply regret what happened," he goes on. "Nobody deserves that. That was not the real Brad Ferro."

Ferro was arrested Aug. 19 shortly after knocking Polizzi, 21, to the floor at the Beachcomber Bar & Grill in Seaside Heights, NJ. Polizzi suffered an injury to the mouth. Ferro was suspended from his job and later enrolled in an anger management course.

Ironically, Ferro -- who says he "drank way too much" the night the incident occurred -- tells the Post that days before the attack, he had taught his students about bad decisions and the dangers of abusing alcohol.

"I remember very little from the time of the incident," Ferro says. "It's all fuzzy. I remember a punch -- I don't remember who or why and I remember being arrested."

Ferro's lawyer Andrew Siben says his client has learned his lesson.

"Brad should be given a second chance to show he is a person of much higher character than has been shown on this video," says Siben. "I think he's a decent young man who, unfortunately, made a bad decision which has come back to haunt him [and possibly end his career]."