Five ways to make money as a grappler
#1 Teach Seminars
or small classes. You know, pick a technique, pick your A game, whatever it is. It could be in your own gym. If your coach is okay with that, presuming you're not the owner of the gym or whatever.
You could do it in a friend's gym. Do an early morning class or something. Specify a technique and crack on.
#2 Sell Merch
Partner up with a clothing company. Partner up with a sponsor. Ask for a cut of a specific design work. Collaborate with them on a t shirt or something like that. Or do your own if you've got a nickname to play on something.
You can print on demand if you want. Tons of websites out there. Or you could just get 20 printed. Sell them all to your mates for your next upcoming match or something like that. More straightforward than you think and not a bad way to make a little bit of money.
Do limited runs. You could do all sorts. Do a white T shirt this time, three months time. Do a black T shirt. Yeah. Get friends with designers and see what you can come up with. See what you can make.
#3 Create Some Content
It could be a YouTube channel. Now, this is kind of like a longer play, I guess, but it could be a YouTube channel. It could be specific stuff that you put on TikTok. Come with the strategy, stick with it, start putting some content out there. It could be you do a technique of the week on TikTok.
Once you get past 100,000 followers on TikTok. They start paying you for TikToks in the same way that YouTube do. You can join it with the content creator program. It won't be loads to start off with, but if you're hammering it and you're doing really well, you can start to make money from TikTok and YouTube.
So have a think about the content that you would create. My brain just goes to jujitsu technique because that's what's so popular at the minute. But you can really build yourself over the platform on there and start to make money from creating content. You don't need a lot. You could do it all with a phone if you wanted to.
Before you know it, you're making some content and you could be making some money. From there. The other thing that you can get from creating content and having an active channel is brand sponsorships. So companies will get in touch with influential creators and say, could you talk about the benefits of using this defense soap?
You know, I mean, to prevent ringworm or whatever it is. It could be anything. It could be coffee. Don't think. Just MMA. Jiu jitsu. There's all kinds of brands out there that are looking for just exposure, but authentic exposure. So, yeah, you can make some real money from doing brand partner videos on YouTube, TikTok, wherever.
So obviously clothing brands and other companies will often sponsor fighters or jiu jitsu guys. Now, these can come at a really high level and a lot of people presume that this is the only way to make money in Jiu Jitsu, and they think it's the dream or wouldn't it be amazing if somebody them along and said, I'm going to pay you X amount and you can just train full time?
Now, the reality is that's kind of saved for the top 2% of probably grapplers in the world. Same with MMA. Is really it's very rare that people, except for the highest, highest, highest levels, will get paid, you know, like a certain amount each month by a sponsorship program. You know, I imagine somebody like Fion, obviously God and Ryan, people like that, do get a monthly retainer.
Whether or not it's enough to live off again, you know, remains questionable. It'll obviously supplement your income and it'll obviously help. But I imagine a lot of people just think that once you get sponsored and you get paid monthly by a sponsorship, that's an amazing way to live. And that's the only way to live.
It's not true. They're all doing lots of other things in order to make money.
#5 Get A Job
Invest in yourself. So one of the ways to make money as a grappler is obviously to go through the belt ranking systems, go do loads of competitions and just general, really perform amazingly.
You can't do that if you can't look after your body, and you can't look after your body without having a bit of money behind you. So as much as the allure of being. Full time grappler might be amazing. Having a part time job. Doesn't have to be full time, doesn't have to be a career.
It could be fucking working in Tesco, it could be working in Costa Coffee. It could be working wherever, somewhere that you might do 16 hours a week, just part time, just to cover your bills and then a bit more. That could pay for your competition entries. It could pay for some physio.
It could pay for a strength and conditioning coach to really bump you up to those next levels. Would you get to those next levels? Then people like sponsors might start knocking on the door. You might start being able to afford to enter competitions where everybody puts a grand in, the winner walks away with eight grand.
Or even just investing in stuff like better food, better supplements, whatever it is that's going to keep you on the mats and keep you training by having a little bit of money in your back pocket. Being able to buy a car and afford the insurance on it and the petrol on it.
To drive the other end of the country. To compete in an event which might just tip you over the edge. Doing all those other things that we discussed along the way, create some content and sell some T shirts for that and all that. Eventually you can kind of build an ecosystem where you can survive.
And live as a grappler, because you laid the foundations by doing all the other things I discussed in this video. But you're going to have to invest in yourself. You're going to have to work somewhere in order to either pay your bills or just to like I say, invest in yourself.
Buy some new gear, not testosterone, unless by gear I mean jujitsu gear. Buy some supplements. Invest in strength and conditioning coach. Invest in a physio or massage therapy or just an extra gym membership so you can go and use a cold plunge and stuff like that. Focusing on recovery, some supplements for your sleep, things like that.
Just basically think of it as, okay, yeah, it might be a little bit of lost time, but what you're going to get from the cash from that is invest back into yourself to become the meanest grappler in the world. When you become undeniable, when you become one of the meanest grapplers in the world, that's when the sponsorship starts coming.
That's when the money starts coming. Flooding in and flow grappling and ringing, wanting to pay you to do stuff. Although apparently flow grappling don't pay people, but you know what I mean? So, yes, that's my five tips, five ways to make money as a grappler. Hope you find it useful!