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Teaching Brazilian jiu-jitsu

A Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt athlete, who is also a professional MMA fighter, is sharing his knowledge of the sport with students from Kleinmond and Hermanus.

Deon Bruning (34), who was born in Bloemfontein and grew up in Cape Town, currently calls Kleinmond home, but lived in the UK for 13 years from 18.

Bruning grew up loving martial arts. “As a kid, I did some wrestling, Karate and later Tae Kwon Do,” he said. “In 2009 while living in the UK I started training Aikido, but decided it was not for me. At the same facilities, another instructor was teaching Brazilian jiu-jitsu, kickboxing and managed an MMA team. He invited me to one class and after that, I was hooked.”

Brazilian jiu-jitsu (BJJ) is a martial art, combat sport, and a self-defence system that focuses on grappling and especially ground fighting. Brazilian jiu-jitsu promotes the concept that a smaller, weaker person can successfully defend against a bigger, stronger assailant by using leverage and proper technique, taking the fight to the ground – most notably by applying joint-locks and chokeholds to defeat the other person.

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu training can be used for sport grappling tournaments and mixed martial arts competition or self-defence. Sparring and live drilling play a major role in training.

“One of the things that stood out for me was when I first started training and sparring with the more experienced members, I remember feeling helpless and completely dominated.

“My training partners were able to control me with ease, without having to use aggression or strength. Having done so many different martial arts up to that point, nothing has ever felt so effective.”

He is not only a skilled Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu fighter as he also competed in big shows like Extreme Fighting Championship (EFC), and he won two amateur British MMA titles, both via submissions.

In 2015, he won the gold medal at the British Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu No-Gi Open while he was still a brown belt in the sport. In 2016, he won Gold at the same tournament but this time wearing his black belt. Later in the same year he took silver at the NAGA London Advanced Category, a Silver at the ADCC Cape Town Advanced Category. Deon was announced as the winner at the Grapple Nation Super Fight submission-only tournament in 2016.

“Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is for everyone, regardless of gender, age or fitness level,” says Bruning.

He is currently teaching Brazilian jiu-jitsu classes in Kleinmond, and will start to teach Jiu-Jitsu in Hermanus from 5 February.

For more information contact Deon Bruning on 079 120 3551.

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