Wellingtonian Is Brazilian Jiu Jitsu US Champion
Press release GSW Martial Arts Wellington
Wellington July 2005
Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is martial Art that most people have never even heard of, but one local man is a US National Champion.
Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ) is a grappling art, which is fast growing in popularity for its non-striking and defensive aspects. BJJ is extremely effective. It involves controlling your opponent and “submitting” them using various methods including, joint manipulation, chokes, immobilization and attack and escape timing
Johnny Bares is a Kiwi living and working in New York, while there he decided to continue with the training he had become addicted to while at home in Wellington. Mr. Bares began training in the art of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ) in 2004 and it quickly became apparent that he not only had a passion for the art but real talent as well.
In November 2004 Mr. Bares competed in a local grappling competition run by the club he trains with, The Grappling Specialists Wellington (GSW), where he took home a Gold medal in his division. Then in February 2005 he competed in a National BJJ Competition, again hosted by the GSW club, which included representatives from Auckland, Napier, Wellington, Palmerston North and Christchurch. Once again Mr. Bares came away with a Gold medal in his division.
Shortly after the competition Mr. Bares traveled to New York to undertake some work for a family member and while there he continued training in BJJ, this time with one of the sports great names, Renzo Gracie. Johnny flourished under Mr. Gracie’s tutelage and decided to enter the “Grapplers Quest US nationals” competition.
Boasting a field of over 1300 competitors, Mr. Bares faced his toughest competition to date, with his division having 30 entrants. Facing opposition that outweighed him by up to 30 kgs and some of who had been training for twice as long, Johnny systematically went through them all to win the entire division! This feat so astounded Renzo Gracie that a few days later he promoted Mr. Bares to Blue Belt, a rank in BJJ that can take as long as 3 years to obtain. Johnny Bares had been training for less than 12 months.