Colombo, Sri Lanka — In order to get away from the harsh European winter, I booked a flight to Sri Lanka. My “winter” vacation mostly consisted of immersing myself in Sri Lanka’s scenic beaches and green highlands while eating delicious koththu rotti and sipping the country’s famous tea. Luckily after gaining 10lbs in 2 weeks, I had an opportunity to drop by BJJ Sri Lanka in Colombo to wrap up my trip.
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Sri Lanka is an island country in South Asia. While its coastline is lined with unpolluted sandy beaches, the mainland boasts compelling landscapes from highlands covered in tea plantations to wildlife-rich jungles. With its famous tea and flavorful local cuisines, the reasons to visit this beautiful South Asian country goes on, not to mention Sri Lanka’s more than two thousand years of recorded culture and history. With various sceneries and activities bottled up into a small island, Sri Lanka provides an array of holiday experiences.
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Sri Lanka is the first BJJ academy in Sri Lanka under the head coach, Tithira Hiranjith Perera, and is currently affiliated with Professor Rodrigo Teixeira. Established in 2016, the academy is one of the pioneers to introduce Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, which is a relatively new martial art, to the country. While training Jeet Kune Do, Coach Tithira had an opportunity to train with Professor Arun Sharma who is now India’s first native BJJ Black Belt and the founder of BJJ India. Subsequently, Coach Tithira was asked if he was interested in starting a BJJ program in Sri Lanka, which he gladly accepted. Shortly after that, Coach Tithira went to Singapore to train under professor Rodrigo Teixeira who later promoted him to a blue belt. Although the academy initially started at his house with a few jigsaw mats, BJJ Sri Lanka has grown with 3 in-house blue belts and more than 50 students with its own training facility.
Given the recent introduction of BJJ to the country and its geographical location, Sri Lanka has rather limited resources for Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. However, that did not stop Coach Tithira from running a successful academy, and he has been going above and beyond to spread the gentle art to his home country including hosting the Invictus submission grappling tournament. Further, one of the ways was to promote and strongly encourage the exchange of knowledge and experiences by combining Sri Lanka’s famous hospitality and Jiu-Jitsu. When I got in touch with Coach Tithira, he welcomed me to the academy with open arms and hosted an open mat for me. With its visitor-friendly environment, I had a pleasant experience with my new friends, and I was happy to share my limited knowledge with them. Coach Tithira even came to hang out the next day with his son!
Sri Lanka is already an amazing country to visit and will remain one of my favorite countries. If you are in Colombo, which you are most likely due to the airport, I would highly encourage you to reach out to BJJ Sri Lanka and enjoy an experience at the academy. I cannot thank Tithira and everyone at BJJ Sri Lanka enough for their hospitality and such a memorable experience. I will be back!
Location & Facility
BJJ Sri Lanka is located approximately 20-minutes away from Colombo’s city center next to the Nugegoda Railway Station. I would personally recommend taking a tuk-tuk since it would be the most convenient way to reach the academy. The facility is located within the martial arts academy called “The Shed”. (Google Map: Link)
BJJ Sri Lanka offers classes every day including morning and evening classes. The academy’s most recent schedule is posted below:
BJJ Sri Lanka did not charge anything for training. However, it is always courteous to reach out to the gym before your visit.
Miscellaneous — BJJ Sri Lanka’s Website
- Mirissa — Surrounded by palm trees swaying in the sea breeze and turquoise waves, Mirissa, a small town on the southern coast of Sri Lanka, is a magical beach town to let the days pass by without a care in the world. From whale watching tours to a handful of notable restaurants along the beach, Mirissa has it all for you to soak up the sun in peace. Don’t forget to take a picture on the famous Coconut tree hill!
- Ella — Tucked away in the misty Sri Lankan high country, Ella is everyone’s favorite hill-country town with spectacular views. The train ride from Kandy to Ella through the tea plantations and mountain passes are considered one of the most scenic train rides. That’s not all. With its iconic Nine Arch Bridge and stunning 220m tall Diyaluma Falls, many of the Sri Lankan adventures can be found in Ella.
- Sigiriya — Often referred to as Lion Rock. Sigiriya is an ancient rock fortress in Sri Lanka. Built on top of a massive column of rock around 200 meters, the UNESCO World Heritage Site has a historical and archaeological significance. It is the most visited tourist destination in Sri Lanka providing unique harmony between nature and human creation. With its spectacular view and the remains of a royal palace on the summit, Sigiriya undoubtedly remains the star attraction in the country.
- Galle — A city on the southwest coast of Sri Lanka known for the Galle Fort, Galle is a fortified old city in Sri Lanka. With stone sea walls and historical architecture, the city embraces its ancient and colonial past. The Galle Fort is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a living monument, and the city connects European architectural styles and South Asian traditions.