MU club sports adds Brazilian jiu-jitsu

Newest martial arts group joins Tae Kwon Do and Kuk Sool Won on campus


Robby Cowles,

Sprawl. Hook. Sweep.

Marquette’s newest club sport is Brazilian jiu-jitsu, a form of martial arts that focuses on ground fighting and grappling.

Aidan Flanagan, a sophomore and the founding president of the club, practiced Brazilian jiu-jitsu throughout high school but found it difficult to continue when he got to Marquette.

“There’s (martial arts) schools around here but unless you have a car you won’t go to those, and those are very expensive,” Flanagan said. “It’s like $200 a month. You’re a college student, you’re not really going to spend all that money, so why not get a club going here?”

Sophomore vice president Andrew Salinas emphasized that the club will be open to all people, regardless of their background in martial arts or Brazilian jiu-jitsu.

“We want to attract a big audience so we want people who have backgrounds in Brazilian jiu-jitsu and people who don’t,” Salinas said. “They can feel like they’re not pressured into a competitive atmosphere, but it is there if you want to do that.”

“Every practice you should come ready to work, but it’s not like you have to be afraid or be nervous,” Flanagan said. “Mainly it’s just to give people the opportunity to learn something new, give them the opportunity to make some friends and get some exercise in the process.”

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu will be the third martial arts club at Marquette, joining Tae Kwon Do and Kuk Sool Won, but Salinas pointed out the differences between the clubs.

“Kuk Sool Won is more of an art form, it’s not as competitive,” Salinas said. “It’s more you do it for yourself and learn for yourself, almost like dance. Tae Kwon Do is more competitive, and (with) that type of martial art… you’re kicking someone. Brazilian ju-jitsu is more grappling.”

In order for it to become an official club at Marquette, the Brazilian jiu-jitsu club must have at least 10 initial members, which will not be a problem according to Flanagan.

“We already have 20 (members) lined up,” Flanagan said. “They’re on deck to sign, so it’s not like we’re going to struggle to get those.”

Finding and recruiting interested students to become members of the new club has not been difficult. The club, which will begin practicing and competing next semester, already has members with different skill levels.

“A lot of people, especially guys, are interested right off the bat,” Salinas said. “If anything, we’re worried about not having enough space to accommodate everyone that actually shows up. There’s a lot of people interested.”