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Fake BJJ Blackbelt Exposed

The Brazilian Jiu-jitsu community is full of frauds and McDojos (fake gyms) due to its mainstream appeal and how lucrative a business it is. The biggest problem is that teaching people without the right credentials endangers the students as this gives them a false sense of security, thinking that they themselves know how to fight.

It may be easy to learn a few moves on youtube and start selling that information as your own skills. But be warned, the Brazilian jiujitsu community is tight-knit, and it is difficult to keep up a charade like this for so long.

Mike Palladino is a black belt in Brazilian Jiu-jitsu and one of the founders of Evolution Grappling Academy in New York. Back in 2015 when Mike was still a Brown belt, he came across a business card at one of his local barbershops that were offering Brazilian Jiu-jitsu classes. At first, he seemed really skeptical as he has never heard of this guy before.

According to his website, he was an “IBJJF recognized Brazilian Jiu-jitsu instructor”. When searched on google, you would find numerous instructional and training videos that verified that he did not know what he was doing. So the first thing Mike did was go over with his training buddies to confront the fraud.

You can watch the whole video below:

As seen in the video, the fake blackbelt just denied all the allegations pointed towards him. Even when screened with different questions like “who promoted you to blackbelt” or “Are you a real blackbelt”, he could not give a straight answer.

The gym closed the next day and you can read what happened to this fake 3 years later in this article.

Ariston Palacios

Ariston is a Purple Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu practitioner and instructor under Carpe Diem BJJ. He is also a Coach at two UFC Gyms in his home country. Discovering BJJ at the age of 18, his passion for the sport usually ends up with most of his time doing all things BJJ related from training, teaching and writing articles. On occasion, you can catch a glimpse of him at a local competition to test his mettle, but you will usually see him sharing his knowledge and passion of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu to clients of all ages wherever a mat can be found.