We’ve just wrapped up a very successful four-day training camp in Ohrid, Macedonia, conducting a total of 6 seminars, three in the gi and three in no gi. We covered a wide range of topics from chokes and leg locks, and discussed general longevity in Jiu Jitsu as well as in life.
It was great to be able to pick up where we left off, it didn’t feel as though we hadn’t seen each other in three years due to border closures and restrictions.
At the Friday night gi seminar and grading, we handed out stripes and pressure tested the belt gradings. Congratulations to Dejan, Blagoja and Martin for their third stripe on brown belts, Ivica for attaining the rank of 1st degree black belt and the other students who got a stripe on the day.
As belts go, Christian put on quite a performance with his smooth transitions in self-defence techniques to attain the rank of green belt. Looking forward to seeing the development of this young man in the future.
The next grade was one that is the pinnacle of achievement for every student that starts training Jiu Jitsu and takes well over 10 years to earn. We welcome to the rank of black belt, Professor Stefan Pecevski. Stefan has competed successfully in many BJJ competitions, and was undefeated in 4 amateur and 6 professional MMA bouts. He teaches regularly at our affiliated school in Skopje, and is the product of the hard work and tireless effort that Ivica has put in, in both promoting and spreading Jiu Jitsu throughout Macedonia.
I’m very proud to see that our seminars went really well, we had people come in from America, Germany, Serbia and Albania to participate. The feedback was positive, and the sessions informative, I’m very grateful for their participation as they gave the seminars an international appeal.
To the head instructors of Macedonia – Ivica, Dejan, Blagoja, Pece, Kate, Martin and Marija, as the years have rolled on your commitment to perfecting the art of Jiu Jitsu has made my long trips and sacrifice in travelling here year after year rewarding. It motivates me to be prepared as well as make that commitment to you to further your knowledge. To make Ultimate Jiu Jitsu a recognisable brand, and a reputation with both integrity and a commitment to the martial arts way.
The one thing that would not have made anything of this remotely possible is the very hard work and passionate perseverance from Ivica and Dejan. I’m truly humbled, your friendship is one that I value and has had a profound effect on me personally.
Macedonia was hit hard over the last two years due to its developing economy and restrictions. But if its one thing that the people here are well versed in, it’s the struggle and that fighting spirit. For them it’s just life and you fight to live it, their resilience is both educational and inspirational. I guess that’s part of what makes them such good martial artists.
The first 10 years of Jiu Jitsu in Macedonia from 2010 to 2020 was all about establishing a strong foundation, and promoting and educating our students in Macedonia. As it occurred all around the world, the pandemic played havoc with our momentum and dismantled a significant amount of our efforts from this first decade.
Now, we’re determined to rebuild and take this art that we love to the next level in the next 10 years, and beyond. Thanks everyone for your attendance and support. I wrap this up thinking back as they years have rolled on, I honestly feel blessed to be a part of what we have created. Take care Macedonia, until we meet again next year.