MMA legend and old school BJJ black belt Enson Inoue has been retired from MMA since 2004 (he had a short comeback fight in 2010), but he has started training Jiu-Jitsu again in 2016 after taking a 10 year break from the sport.
He actually went through a weird period when coming back to Jiu-Jitsu as he found himself lost with all the new techniques. After deciding to demote himself to purple belt, and creating much buzz in the BJJ community, he then decided to go back to black belt rank. Inoue was a BJJ black belt since 1999 and had started training in the mid 1990’s under Relson Gracie and then in Japan:
A few days ago, Enson Inoue had his 5th degree on his black belt certified by Nova Uniao founders Andre Pederneiras and Wendell Alexander (His instructor’s instructors):
“Thank you John Lewis for believing in me and making this happen. Getting recognition of my 5th degree BJJ Black Belt from Andre Pederneiras and the Nova Uniao Family. All I need is John Lewis’s signature on it to make it complete.”
View this post on Instagram
View this post on Instagram
He found himself in another strange situation back in September, when he was rejected by the International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation (IBJJF) when he tried to register his black belt with them , in order to register his BJJ/MMA academy Purebred as an official team in IBJJF.
I got my black belt from John Lewis in 1999 and I was never concerned about putting on my degrees but it was brought to my attention that I need to be certified by the IBJJF in order to be able to have my school, Purebred registered as an official team.
So I contacted The Japanese IBJJF and after waiting for over a year they told me that the main office will not acknowledge it. I got my black belt in 1999 so I am suppose to be a 5th degree. I don’t understand why they won’t acknowledge it. It’s just a bummer that I can’t register Purebred as an official gym of the IBJJF.
Thank you Nakai Yuki and Naoya Uematsu for trying to help me. What’s up IBJJF?
With that said, I’m not worried. I never actually cared about putting on stripes or framing a certificate. I have an awesome affiliate in @bjj_united that Purebred can compete under. Just unfortunate the Purebred banner can’t be flown respectfully . Sorry @purebredbjjguam, @purebredfukuoka @purebredfightfitness @fisticuffs_lg I tried.
So what does it take for IBJJF to recognize a bjj black belt?
According to their website:
You must have a valid IBJJF membership as a Black Belt with IBJJF or with an affiliated federation.
A certificate of completion/achievement from a CPR (Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation) or Basic Lifesaving course.
You must have an IBJJF Rules Seminar Certificate of Achievement completed within the last 12 months. IBJJF approval requires you earn 60% or more on the test taken in-person during the Rules Seminar or 70% or more on the online test during the Rules Webinars.
Processing Fee: $400
Processing Fee for each degree: $150