Featured affiliated academy: Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Qeqertarsuaq,BJJ Greenland

BJJ Greenland

Where is the gym located?
Our gym is located in a local multi-court gym on Disco Island, Qeqertarsuaq, Greenland.

How many people train there?
We have around 4-5 adults and 8-10 kids who train in our academy.

Is the gym growing – if so by how many new members each month or year?
The sport is so new that many people don’t know it yet, and our academy is so new, so it’s difficult to say yet if it is growing.

What are the highest and lowest belt grades training in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Qeqertarsuaq, BJJ Greenland?
We are all white belts, since there’s no one to promote us. I’ve been training martial arts for approximately 5-6 years, and BJJ for 4-5 years.

When did the gym open?
The gym opened in 2019, and in the beginning it was just us getting together to train. As people got more interested in the arts, we got together and officially became a club/academy.

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Qeqertarsuaq, BJJ in Greenland

Some facts about you:

Name: Aputsiaq Olsen
Age: 34
Belt: White
Years in BJJ: 4-5 years
Other martial arts: As a kid Tae Kwon Do, as an adult Muay Thai and BJJ
Currently living in: Qeqertarsuaq, Greenland
Originally from: Qeqertarsuaq, Greenland

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Qeqertarsuaq, BJJ Greenland

Please tell us the story of how your gym came into existence
I came back to my hometown to work in my profession in 2019. I have been training BJJ, and the only martial art the town had was Tae Kwon Do. I told my friends about BJJ and that they could try it out to see if it interests them. We did one training session, and they were hooked.

We’ve been training ever since. The kids saw us training, and they asked if the could try it. They tried it, and told their friends about it. At most we had 18 kids in a single training session, of which 8-10 have become regulars.

Tell us about the people that train in the gym – who are they?
They are fight enthusiasts like myself. We love to fight and grapple.

What are some of the challenges of running a BJJ gym in general, and in your area specifically?
The gym where we train only allows us to train on certain days. We still aren’t enough people to buy or rent a dedicated place to train.

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Qeqertarsuaq, BJJ Greenland

How do you see the future for BJJ in your area?
I hope the art can keep growing and become a national one, so we can have national championships.

What’s the best thing about your gym?
We do not charge for our members. It is free to become a member, and it is free to train with us.

I have just bought 15 BJJ gis so that members don’t need to buy their own. 11 gis for the kids and 4 for the adults. By doing this, the parents don’t need to buy a new gi every time their kids grows bigger.

What would you recommend Globetrotters to see in your area apart from the inside of your gym?
We have some of the most beautiful nature in our area. You can look it up on Visit Greenland and search for “Qeqertarsuaq, Greenland”. Everyone in the town is welcoming.

And we would love to see other BJJ enthusiasts in our town.

Thank you to Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Qeqertarsuaq, BJJ Greenland for making this interview