When you start your BJJ journey there are a few things you realize; who can tap you out, who you can tap out and how everyone is brought together by BJJ. With my recent travels and my personal experience training BJJ I have realized that you truly do create a new family within the gym. A great number of BJJ practitioners have two families, their real one and their gym family.

The camaraderie that is created when all are striving towards a certain goal is unbelievable. When training at the 4 months at Dark Horse BJJ, it was truly the environment that kept me there. Everyone there had a common goal; it wasn't to beat each other up but to make each other better. The blood that's shed, the injuries that occurs, and all of the other things that happen when training BJJ brings everyone closer.

I competed in November after training at DH for about 2months, I didn't expect anyone to coach me since there were others competing as well. But as soon as I was called to fight, everyone was calling our team over to coach me. Needless to say I was very surprised and it truly meant the world to me that they would do that for me. Recently I competed at Pan Ams and met up again with my team. It was like nothing had changed, everyone was still family even after being away for 4 months. They are more than a gym family to me. They are my real family.

I don't believe this is a unique feature within one particular gym. Watching Cobrinha, Lucas Lepri, Fabio Gurgel and other Alliance leaders interact at Pans also opened my eyes to this idea of family. They acted like brothers; with Cobrinha in LA, Lepri in Atlanta and Fabio in Brazil, from what I can imagine they probably don't see each other much, but it's BJJ that brings them together. Brazilian Jiu Jitsu to me, and to many others is more than just a sport, more than just a passion, it's Life.


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