Last weekend my students Casey Pearson and Aly Pearson became  American National Champions and it makes me super proud. Proud of them, of course, because they have been working super hard and they did great at the tournament. But more than this, it makes me proud of my whole team and proud to be a coach.

The Pearsons’ were my first students in the USA. At the beginning with Private Lessons and after as the students’ number 001 and 002 of Six Blades jiu-Jitsu Fort Worth (followed by their daughters as number 003 and 004). They were there to help me to choose the place for the gym, to help me paint the school when we found the place, also for thanksgiving and barbecue.

In the beginning, communication was hard. My English wasn’t good enough, and he speaks Texan English, which is not easy at all. However, we had a lot in common since the beginning, and jiu-jitsu was one of these things. At this time, Casey had been training BJJ for 3 months and would like to evolve faster. He starts with private lessons, and after he brought Aly to training together, looking for self-defense and to have extra time together as a family.

Arriving in a new country is very hard: New city, New house, New church, New friends, New culture, New language.  Don’t forget to add an immigration process and a new business to this list. Everything is new and it’s challenging. To find friends like they since the beginning is a blessing.

For the last 18 months they have been training consistently, and the results at the IBJJF American National just reflect all the hard works. And it makes me look to my whole team.

Just like them, I have so many students that are working hard to improve themselves in different ways. Each one of them makes me super proud when they respect the process of learning jiu-jitsu. When they try to use the technique they are learning instead of crazy things. When they are good listeners and trust me and in the plan that I’m drawing for them to grow. When they follow the plan.

Also when they can be happy because a teammate won a fight at the same moment they lose their own fight in the tournament. Or when they text me during the day asking for a position they could see from the position learned yesterday.They allow me to do what I love most professionally: to coach.

My first two American National Champions are also my first two students in USA, and I’m sure this is just the beginning. I’m proud of what we are building at Team Marra – Six Blades Jiu-Jitsu Fort Worth.