New Members: Introduce Yourself Here!

New to our forums? Introduce yourself here. Share your story, Jiu Jitsu experience, and goals.

I’m Cole - one of the cofounders of Gold BJJ. I’m originally from the East Coast (DC), and my wife and I moved to San Diego in 2015. When we lived in DC I was boxing a bunch, but when we moved to San Diego I wanted to try something new and figured being in San Diego I would give Jiu Jitsu a shot. I quickly got hooked and have been training pretty much daily since then.

I train at Professor Rodrigo Medeiros’ academy in Pacific Beach, where I got my blue belt in June 2017.

My cofounder Dave and I started Gold BJJ in 2016. We had some ideas on how to improve the Jiu Jitsu accessories we were using (one of our first products was our Gatame Training Backpack to hold our sweaty gear after training), and we launched Gold BJJ as a side project. Our initial couple of products quickly built up momentum, and we’ve been building out our line since.

We started Gold BJJ with the core value of treating our customers like family. We back all of our products with an unconditional guarantee - we don’t want to take your money unless you’re 110% thrilled with your purchase. One of the projects I’ve been most excited to work on is Gold BJJ Online Training (officially launching on Monday, July 1st). It’s been an incredible experience working with some high level athletes on our training content.

I’m looking forward to meeting more members of the Jiu Jitsu community through these forums!

1 Like

Hello everyone! I’m John, or those who know me, call me Jates (short for JT). I’m from the Philippines. (Yes, BJJ is indeed a thing here too! :slight_smile:)

I started JiuJitsu in 2016. I actually wanted to start earlier than that but before gyms here were very difficult to come by and not really that advertised. Luckily I was able to join one of the known teams here which is Ronin Jiujitsu, now known and affiliated with Checkmat as Checkmat Manila

I was promoted to Blue Belt on Oct 2017 under Professor Jeffrey Calma (1st degree black belt under Leo Vieira) Although mostly we were trained by our brown belt during his absence. Now he is a Black Belt as well, Professor Manny Jimenez III.

I loved competing but since my wife and I had our first baby. I had to stay at home and take care of him. Slowly getting back your rhythm is indeed not a simple thing!

After all…

‘Jiujitsu is a Journey, not a destination’

Right? :wink:

Please allow me to share a picture of my team after the 3rd seminar of Leo Vieira held in our HQ:

I am grateful and honored to be part of this community. This is the perfect venue for sharing your passion and curiosity for the art and discpline!

Looking forward to hear from you all!

1 Like

Hello Gold BJJ Forums,

My name is Jordan and I have been training BJJ since February 2016. I currently live in Tucson, Arizona with my wife. We both train under BJJ black belt Chris Cariaso at Rise Combat Sports.

My journey in BJJ began while I was studying Arabic in Amman, Jordan. I was looking for an outlet while being alone in another country and I had some previous casual experience in martial arts.

I literally thought I was looking for a judo school and ended up in a small BJJ dojo, named ‘The Dojo,’ tucked into the 5th floor of a Jordanian skyscraper.

The place is owned and run by the Rasheed brothers Abdalkarim, Hussein, and Abdallah Rasheed.

Long story short, my three weeks at the Dojo changed my life and I ended up dropping out of my study abroad program.

Although there were a number of reasons for me leaving my graduate degree program, a big factor was my desire to pursue Brazilian Jiu Jitsu as a serious aspect of my life.

I returned home, got a job in HVAC, and began training BJJ 3-5 days per week in Monterey, California under Daniel Thomas, a Coalition 95 black belt.

I earned my blue belt in December 2016 and decided to pursue amateur MMA. I lost my first fight due to being entirely unprepared in striking and wrestling.

Following my first MMA loss, my journey took me to Antdawg’s MMA in Gilroy where I trained under Anthony Figueroa, Angel Figueroa, and their coaches Antonio van Buren and Adine Duenas.

They taught me many fundamentals of fighting and cornered me for my first (and only) MMA victory. That was well over a year ago and I have not since competed in a strike-legal tournament, nor do I intend to.

Cost of living, bad commutes, and a draining lifestyle caused my wife and I to move to Tucson, Arizona in July 2018. Tucson has a thriving BJJ community and we are currently loving the lifestyle and BJJ training here.

Although I train many hours per week and compete about 3 times per year in BJJ, I do not consider myself a competitive player and strictly train and compete for the balance and satisfaction it provides on its own.

I train gi and no gi about equally.

Outside of BJJ, I am a strength and fitness coach and train several non-BJJ guys and gals in strength and conditioning. I also teach some group fitness classes.

I am a big fan of all styles of resistance training including bodyweight, free-weights, and all manner of strength and conditioning implements.

I am currently working on developing strength and conditioning routines for various levels of athleticism to help new and experienced BJJ players to safely strengthen their bodies while recovering for 3-4 training days per week.

I’m blessed to be able to rent space at this badass strength and conditioning facility.

Feel free to ask me any strength and conditioning questions.

I look forward to interacting with you on the Gold BJJ Forums!



Hi Everyone!

My name is Sky and I am a white belt from Cebu City, Philippines. Aside from BJJ, I also train in Muay Thai and Boxing. I’m quite confident in my striking abilities and wanted to improve a whole lot on my grappling, hence I decided to start training in Jiu Jitsu.

I train with the awesome people at 90/Eight BJJ PH. Our head coach, PJ Pages is the brother of the Jay Pages, CEO and founder of Jay Pages Jiu Jitsu Academy based in Tempe, AZ. PJ already relocated to Arizona but our Purple belts who are currently running the show are really doing an amazing job in training us and making sure we get a fun-filled learning experience.

Here are some photos of me and the 90/Eight BJJ folks:

I am so happy to be part of this online community and discussion forum. :blush:

Looking forward to meeting you all and hearing your insights. :black_heart:


Nice to meet you @jiujatesu! Congrats to you and your wife on your first baby. Thanks for sharing those photos - your academy looks amazing.

1 Like

Welcome @jiujitsu.lifts! Congrats on your blue belt and MMA win, takes some serious guts to step in there. Looking forward to picking your brain about strength training for BJJ :slight_smile:

1 Like

Welcome @Sky! Awesome photos, thanks for sharing. It’s cool to see how Jiu Jitsu (and martial arts in general) are growing so fast in the Philippines.


Hello everyone, my name is Keon Gallagher and the owner of a jiu jitsu meme page known as @no_jitsu. I am excited to start working with everyone! I started grappling at age 10 in two wrestling styles and started jiu jitsu in February of 2017. I am currently a blue belt under Bradley Lehuta in Missoula, MT. Here’s some pics of me competing (and some memes)


Welcome @no.jitsu, awesome memes (and competition photos) haha.

Hello fellow Checkmat Affiliate @jiujitsu.lifts! :slight_smile:

I can imagine the bad commutes and cost of living scenarios we encounter heavily here in the PH. Three times per year? You sir, are a competitor!

Thank you for sharing and introducing yourself! Can’t wait to chat with you all regarding our common passion!

Hi @Sky!

Wow Cebu! The tourist capital of our country! Part of my job entails travelling and one part of it had me training in Osaka, in a gym there call Impacto BJJ Ikuno. Having said that, hope I can cross train there as well some time if my business travel brings me there!

Looking forward to hearing from you all!

1 Like

Nice to meet you too @Cole! Thanks for opening this forum for us to share and be loud in expressing our passion in the digital world!

Dude, I follow your ig extensively and get a kick our of your posts. I now know the man behind @no.jitsu, and the humor that’s in our sport! Hahaha!

Looking forward to fun times with you guys!

1 Like

HOLA! I’m Noreen currently living in Cebu Philippines. I’m a martial arts enthusiast, Growing up I was taught by my brothers with karate-do and taekwondo. I started jiu-jitsu last year but sadly I had to stop a couple of months ago. Aside from BJJ, I trained a little bit on Boxing, muay thai and capoeira. I’m always moving around, so it makes me happy whenever I meet people who love martial art.

I don’t compete but I love sparring. So, I’m always a yes for a quick spar. :innocent:

1 Like

Thank you!!! I’m glad you enjoy my content and i’m i can’t wait to get to know you and everyone!

1 Like

Hi @Noreen,

I’m from Cebu, too! It also makes me happy that more Cebuanas like us are slowly but steadily learning and practicing combat sports. I took a break from Jiu Jitsu for awhile as well because my work schedule was kind of hectic and the traffic got really bad that it made me miss classes. But I guess everything works out eventually because now the Universe technically conspired for me to be able to attend Jiu Jitsu training again. :slightly_smiling_face:

If you want to get back on the mats, you can check out my gym’s schedule and see if it works for you. We’re very easy to get along with, I promise. :blush:

Hi, @jiujatesu!

Sure, we’d love to have you train with us! We get a lot of visitors from other gyms nationally and internationally as well and it’s always a fun learning experience every time. Let me know if your job brings you to Cebu soon. :slightly_smiling_face:

1 Like

Yes… commutes can serious impact quality of life. I was lucky enough to be able to move when I did.

I did start at Checkmat while in the Middle East, however my current gym is unaffiliated as far as I know. Our instructor has his black belt from Ralph Gracie and Kurt Osiander.

As others have noted, it’s really great to be able to see BJJ growing across the world.

It looks like its really thriving in the Philippines?

Hi Guys!

I’m Dave, the other cofounder of Gold BJJ. I grew up in San Diego and am now a father of two, raising my kids here with my wife, Caroline.

(I’m the one with no hair :stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes:)

I was always at the beach as a kid and surfing has remained a passion of mine my entire life. I played traditional sports growing up and had no experience in martial arts or combat sports before starting BJJ in 2015.

I train at Professor Rodrigo Medeiros’ academy in Pacific Beach and received my blue belt in June 2018 (I took a 10 month break from training after the birth of our 2nd child, Henry). I like playing butterfly guard and Z guard, but have recently been working hard to improve my passing game!

Here was a fun day of training- our annual Ugly Christmas Sweater No Gi day. Yes, it was hot and gross, haha!

As Cole mentioned in his introduction, we started Gold BJJ to make jiu jitsu gear that we loved using in our training. We are incredibly proud of everything we make and that is why we back up all our products with a comprehensive guarantee. We will do whatever it takes to make our customers happy.

We are stoked to launch Gold BJJ Online Training today! It has been a lot of fun filming with these instructors and creating a platform that helps teach techniques in a logical, thoughtful framework.

I am looking forward to meeting more members of the community and all getting better together :call_me_hand: