Meet Jun Matsumoto. Not only is he one of my favorite training partners, but his martial arts story is truly…
I Received My Brown Belt In Jiu-Jitsu!
I received my brown belt in jiu-jitsu today. By my rough calculation, I have spent at least 2,400 hours on the mats (if not more). It has been a long journey with many ups and downs (and injuries), but I would not change any of it. I have been submitted more times than I can remember. I have gone home discouraged more times than I care to admit. I have wanted to give up more times than I can count. For sure, I am not the most talented jiu-jitsu student, but my love for the gentle art is unbreakable.
This journey would not have been possible without the incredible professors and training partners who have helped me along the way. I would like to express my deepest gratitude to Master Renzo Gracie and Professors Rafael Gordinho Lima, Teco Shinzato, Alex Silva, Leandro Brodinho, Almiro Barros, Gamal Hassan El Amin, Valdir Rodrigues, Eduardo Rigatto Novaes, Guli Kozama, Rodrigo Marello, Thales Nakassu, and Martin Hartono. Without each of you, I would not be here today. Each of you gave me a piece of your game and generously shared your love of the gentle art with me. You beat me up and made me suffer, but I am eternally grateful for all of the lessons on and off the mats. I would also like to thank all of my training partners over the last 16 years. I would like to give a special shoutout to all of the jiu-jitsu students at EVOLVE with whom I have rolled, especially Jun Matsumoto. Thank you all for making me a better martial artist and a better human being.
It is embarrassing to admit, but I started jiu-jitsu in January 2005 at the Renzo Gracie Academy when I was living in NYC. I received my blue belt in November 2007 before moving to Singapore. I eventually switched to no gi jiu-jitsu and trained the next 10 years without the gi. In 2018 though, I decided to go back to the gi to chase my dream of earning my black belt. Despite my crazy work schedule, I committed myself to training 5-6x a week again. It was hard to get back into the gi after so many years without it, but I am now genuinely addicted to it. I ended up receiving my purple belt in September 2019 and the rest is history as they say. It has not been easy, but it has been a truly extraordinary adventure. Martial arts is what I love. Martial arts is who I am.
In our suffering, we discover our greatness. OSS!!! #gratitude
Chatri Sityodtong is a self-made entrepreneur and lifelong martial artist from Thailand. His rags-to-riches life story has inspired millions around the world on BBC News, CNN, Financial Times, Bloomberg TV, CNBC, Channel NewsAsia, and other major media. He is the Founder, Chairman, and CEO of Group ONE Holdings (ONE), Asia’s largest global sports media platform in history with a global broadcast to over 150+ countries around the world. He is also the star of the Asian edition of The Apprentice, the award-winning, global reality TV series. Sityodtong was named “Asia’s King of Martial Arts” by the Financial Times and was ranked the “2nd Most Powerful Person in Sports in Asia” by FOX Sports. Sityodtong was also selected as one of “Asia’s Top 100 Business Leaders” by Business Insider. He is an Entrepreneur-in-Residence at INSEAD, Europe’s top business school. Inducted recently into the Black Belt Hall of Fame, Sityodtong is a Kru in Muay Thai under Yodtong Senanan and a Brown Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu under Renzo Gracie. Sityodtong holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and a BA from Tufts University.