Danny O'Donnell


There’s a quote currently circulating the internet that reads, “My honest advice for anyone wanting more from life: MOVE AWAY FROM YOUR HOMETOWN. You’ll find you become your true self, you stop caring what other people think, and there’s a million times more support. People in your hometown rarely want you to win.” As someone who’s left his hometown, this got me thinking about the pros and cons of moving to a new city. I moved from the Chicago area to Arizona during the fall of 2014 to train with one of the best competition teams I could find and to pursue other new challenges. While the move was not easy, there were so many benefits. Leaving my comfort zone taught me a lot about myself, the people around me, and what I wanted out of jiu-jitsu.

What does it mean to be a jiu-jitsu professional in 2021? When you think of a professional in jiu-jitsu, you probably think of a competitor or a coach. However, a jiu-jitsu professional is anyone who makes a living through the sport. An athlete, a coach, a jiu-jitsu-related business owner, and even a jiu-jitsu content creator can all be included in the professional category.