Former UFC champion Holly Holm has just promoted to blue belt in BJJ by her instructors Roberto ‘Tussa’ Alencar and Rafael ‘Barata’ Freitas.
Holm has been putting in the work training with and without the Gi for the past few years.
After losing to Miesha Tate last year by submission, Holm put on her Gi and started to work more seriously in her Jiu-Jitsu:
I am going to train hard and show that I am better than this. I am down but not out. Thank you Miesha for the opportunity last weekend. Well done. What do you say? ….Let’s do this again.
How awesome are these guys ?!?! Thank you @tussagb and @bjpenn for your kindness and your knowledge.
The practice of promoting big name MMA fighters in Jiu-Jitsu has generated – and still generates – much controversy. Xande Ribeiro, for example, did not mince words to criticize the instructors promoting students more for fame than for actual effort . Holm’s instructor Roberto ‘Tussa’ Alencar, however, does not follow the above line. Jiu-Jitsu teacher UFC champion Jon Jones , Tussa told TATAME why he still has not promoted ‘Bones’ to blue belt.
“He is done with moving from New York to Albuquerque. At the beginning, he would go to the academy only for class, but now it is different, he is staying longer. He already has transferred his daughters to our school. The transfer is complete. Everything has been resolved. I talked to the coaches and now he will start to work in the Gi, to get a promotion because white belt is not working, not for a champion (laughs), ”
“He has to get at least a blue belt. But he has to understand the principle of Jiu-Jitsu, has to understand the rules, philosophy, have to spend some time on it. I can not give the belt to him just because he’s Jon Jones. So about that classic photo where he’s a white belt, I said, ‘Jon Jones, I’ll tie the white belt on you there because you have never trained kimono. You are good enough to have submitted a BJJ black belt with guillotine and americana (Lyoto Machida, Vitor Belfort) and everything, but that does not make you a black belt ‘. So I want him to work. It is a way to force him to put the Gi and train, just as my students do. I do not think that it’s fair for my students who work for one or two years to get a blue belt, and Jon Jones, only because it is a UFC star, gets the blue belt with no idea of philosophy, not knowing who is his and my master and all. That’s how I think and he respected that a lot, ”
Tussa says that Jones likes to train Jiu-Jitsu, but explains that his busy schedule hampers his training routine:
“When he learns something new, he likes to try to apply it. Go for a heel hooks, some triangles and stuff. Jon Jones trains Jiu-Jitsu once or twice a week, when it is possible. His schedule is very busy. He has plenty to do. So when he has some time there, he calls me.”