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Bakersfield jiu jitsu academy makes strides

"It’s always all about the kids."
Posted at 6:06 AM, Jan 03, 2023

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — Ferny Arreola is a black belt jiu jitsu professor with his own academy.

He served in the marine corps for eight years after high school and he loved grappling, so when he came home, he began teaching himself jiu jitsu.

After getting belted and competing a lot, Ferny created Ferny Jiu Jitsu.

“It started as a wrestling class but eventually it grew into a jiu jitsu academy and ever since then, we’ve just been kicking butt," he said.

103 awards in only nine years.

Ferny said that’s pretty unheard of but really, the most rewarding part is the impact on his students.

“I tell parents, especially when they got girls, self-defense is a must. It's not an option," he said. "It’s not sports like soccer, football, tennis.”

Ferny said jiu jitsu helps the kids strengthen their bodies and their self-esteem.

“It helps them with other sports. [It] gets them in shape. I’ve had 20 kids be bullied in school. They don’t get bullied anymore," he said.

Although the awards don’t hurt either.

“We’re the first team to ever win three titles at the worlds and four. We did that twice so we have [twelve] world titles," said Ferny.

Still, he said it’s not actually about winning.

“I tell them I don’t care if you lose, as long as you give it your all. That's all I care about. We could lose every tournament. I don’t care as long as you don’t give up." said Ferny.

Helping them stay healthy and gain confidence on and off the mat.

“I do events every month for them. I do little fight shows for them, parties, we have pizza parties after every tournament. It’s always all about the kids," said Ferny.

If you’d like to learn more, visit Ferny Jiu Jitsu on Facebook.

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