In the competitive world of Jiu-Jitsu, black belt sensation Paulo Miyao has recently called out a prominent jiu-jitsu promotion for offering what he deems as an inadequate compensation package. The offer, totaling $1,000 to show and an additional $1,000 to win a contract, has sparked a discussion within the BJJ community about the value placed on the skills and dedication of athletes in the sport.
Miyao writes on social media: “Have you thought about dedicating 15 interrupted years of your life to a profession? Recognized as one of the world’s best in the area. Having taught in over 20 different countries.
Have your own school with over 150 students in less than a year of operation.
Having a social media with almost half a million followers and being one of the most active content producing in the area.
Imagine all this and getting an invite to test your knowledge with another field expert at one of the world’s largest conferences for $1,000.
It ain’t little money but in my opinion it’s little consideration.
This was an offer I had to fight in one of the biggest jiu jitsu events in the world.
Although it makes me a little sad because, as I said, I dedicated 15 years of my life to this sport, it also leaves me at peace and with a clear conscience that I have decided to turn away from competitions relatively young and have devoted myself to studying and improving myself in others areas.
Competitive jiu jitsu will, for now and unfortunately, only provide a comfortable retirement for a few athletes.
A piece of advice to the young people who follow me: train hard and give your all as competitors, but also dedicate yourself to improving other Jiu Jitsu related skills such as teaching, communicating and selling. That way you won’t have to accept any and every proposal.”
Miyao accompanied the post with a picture of the text exchange with the promoter confirming the 1000$ offer.
Miyao clarified in comments: “My intention with this post is not to expose anyone, but to alert young people who deceive themselves that competition alone will guarantee them a future.”
Many prominent BJJ competitors piped in.
Dillon Danis was among the first commenting sarcastically: “Legends”
Fabo Gurgel praised Miyao for the post saying: “Congratulations Paulo, I’ve been saying this for a long time… very good to read the testimony of one of the greatest in sport and his influence guiding the new generation”
Adam Wardzinski added: “This happens often unfortunately… we as jiu jitsu athletes sometimed accept being underpaid to showcase our style hoping for better pay in the future and more recognition but being a veteran of the sport, one of the best in history why would one accept 1k$ pay when can simply teach a seminar, make few dozens attenders happy by sharing knowledge, avoid all the stress and struggle and at the end of the day have much more money in the pocket?”
Felipe Andrew commented on the fact promoters feel entitled to behave this way due to the fact competitors compete in IBJJF for free. He also pointed out that the only reason he’s getting the call in the first place is because he spent the money competing for free building up the name:
“The guy comes and then says “but you fight for free and you still spend money on IBJJF events. “ He’s my friend, but if it weren’t for these events that I “spend to fight for free” you wouldn’t be here calling me…”
Aj Agazarm added: “hahaha these guys are the worst, only want to take advantage to put more money in their pockets at the expense of our well being. what’s worse is the ones that say they are gonna pay you and never do while hiding behind a name because they think you’ll never expose them. good thing we have each other brother which is why it’s so important for us to show solidarity and use our platforms to change the sport. ✊”
Craig Jones reacted with a classic Pawn Stars Best I Can Do Meme:
Miyao’s post shines a spotlight on the fact that most of the talent in Jiu-Jitsu still struggles to secure major paydays that would make competitive Jiu-Jitsu a viable career choice.