Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is growing at a rapid rate among hobbyist athletes, and it seems that it will continue growing at that rate for some time… But the question is: how big will it grow when it comes to professional competitors?
How much money will there be involved for them – and will a successful competitor be able to make a living from tournaments?
This is the topic that Joe Rogan and Gordon Ryan discussed in a relatively recent Joe Rogan Experience episode. Rogan asked:
So you think, by time you’re 40, then you will be done. Where do you think the sport will be by then?
I mean, if you really look into the future in 13 years, how big do you think it’s going to grow?
Ryan first answers with his own efforts in mind:
The problem is, I’m trying the best I can [to promote BJJ] – but I’m only one guy. It has a trickle-down effect, so everyone’s going to get paid; everyone fights me to get paid, like, twice as much. So, athletes will make more.
But, I think that it is possible for it to break into a spectator’s sport. I think that there’s always going to be a cap on how many people watch it.
Like, it’s never going to be as big as the UFC. But I think it’s going to be a lot bigger than it is.
I think we can start to get people paid well. As in, like, real athletes for matches. I think that I will be making 7 figures per fight and a lot of people will be making 6 figures per fight.
So that people can compete and not have to worry. Like, they can just compete and be athletes.
Like, right now, if you want to create a career – you have to own a school. Or you have to teach seminars. You have to do something else… You can’t just be a competitor.