History has been made in Great Britain as Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is now recognised by the Sports Councils of England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland and the UKBJJA is the recognised National Governing Body for the sport across the UK.This recognition can help grow the sport to new heights.
In most countries were BJJ is present, many foreign entities such the AJP and IBJJF backed federations and associations are trying to controlling the sport to make profit after the athletes in these countries (like the UK) had built the sport up from grassroots.
It’s only when profit was seen as viable that the outside entities suddenly took an interest.
The UKBJJA decided to protect BJJ, the students and the clubs from this happening in the UK by setting up a not for profit association run by people who were actively involved in UK BJJ and had been since the beginning.
So what does this all mean for UK BJJ?
Simon hayes of the UKBJJ stated:
“We also needed to be recognised to get BJJ being taught in schools and other places of education: something we all believe wholeheartedly in.
There are also plenty of grants and other types of funding both nationally and locally that are only available to recognised sports, so hopefully those funds that are set aside for sport (for all groups inc children and the disadvantaged) will become something UK BJJ clubs can begin to apply for, which will enable our sport to benefit more people in our local communities.
Of course there’s a whole list of other advantages centred around achieving higher standards: tournaments, safety, refs etc etc.
What I hope is that anyone who was previously on the fence, now gets onboard and joins us.
Thank you to both our CEO’s (Mike Williams and formerly Kat Hill) and all the members of Council who represent all the teams across the UK: collaborating to make our sport better and protect it.”
Statement from UKBJJA chairman Richard Martin:
I’m delighted to announce that Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is now recognised by the Sports Councils of England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland and the UKBJJA is the recognised National Governing Body for the sport across the UK.
The process of recognition for the sport has taken 8 years and was one of the founding goals of the association.
I’d like to thank my co-founders, Dave Coles and Simon Hayes, for their help and guidance with this project. I believe we have so far achieved what we set out to do by creating an NGB that is democratic, transparent, fair and serves all clubs and affiliations equally. The NGB should be there to serve the clubs, not the other way around as with some other sports.
I’d also like to thank the CEO, Mike Williams and his predecessor, Kat Hill for their hard work. Both have played an important part in the development of the association and the successful recognition process.
Finally, thank you to the Board of Directors and the Council, both past and present. Anyone who has given their time for the development of the association has played their part in creating a National Governing Body that we can be proud of, and that will help us to develop the sport going forwards in what I believe will be a period of huge growth.
I’ll be taking a back seat from now on and step down from the role of Chairman at the AGM on 23rd October. I’m confident that with a new Board of Directors, elected at that meeting, the association will have fresh impetus to take our sport to the next level, and become the largest martial art in the UK.