Freedom Fighter Msg. Jason Martin Talks About His Roots, the Army and Jiu-Jitsu for Everyone!
In the war-torn country of Afghanistan, few may think that the art of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu may ever reach it. While some may argue its sheer possibility, one man has dared to put on the Gracie Barra Gi to spread the Gracie Barra way in that region!
Meet Master Sergeant Jason Martin of Jalalabad Afghanistan. Being active in the army for almost a decade, Msg. Martin teaches Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu as a part of the army’s Modern Army Combatives. “After I got interested in Jiu-Jitsu through the program I found a Gracie Barra instructors near the base I was stationed at, Prof Brian Marvin at Ft. Campbell, KY. He got me linked into Gracie Barra and I have been with them ever since.”
While the need to travel a lot can pose a challenge in his learning, Msg. Martin has had the influence and guidance of Professor Fabio Costa of Gracie Barra Georgia; getting in touch with different Coaches and instructors in U.S. bases close to Gracie Barra schools.
Everywhere I go, I try to spread the love of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu – Msg. Jason Martin, Jalalabad Afghanistan
“Since I am in the Army and travel so much it was hard to have one Prof. to stay under so Prof. Fabio has taken me under his wings and guided me as I have moved around for the last several years,” he says. “I have helped get a few schools going and worked with several other great coaches like Joshua Bowlin and Gracie Barra in Columbus, Georgia owned by Nate Hayes, Coach Deanna Yohe in Clarksville Tennessee and Coach Kenny Tyson in Murray, Kentucky. Everywhere I go, I try to spread the love of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.”
Having the drive and a deep understanding of the Gracie Barra methods, it was natural for Msg. Martin to start teaching BJJ when he got deployed to Afghanistan. “It was natural to start teaching Gracie Barra Jiu jitsu to the Soldiers and local Afghan workers who are all here on the base.” He says.
His focus in teaching Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu art is to help the freedom fighters that we have over the country of Afghanistan. “I teach mainly soldiers from the U.S. Army but the Afghans that have come to class have loved it and the GB system of teaching it. ( The Fundamental Program),” he explains.
When asked him who his favorite Gracie Barra personality is. He answers, “I have a few GB personalities that I admire much Master Carlos Gracie Jr. of course, Prof. Brian Marvin (my longest GB instructor). It is hard to keep one instructor with the Army life and moving around, the late Prof. Pedro Lacerda, who in a very short time knowing him taught me more about the spirit of GB than anyone. My favorite all in all though is Prof Fabio Costa. I met Fabio when he did a MMA fight years ago in Columbus, GA.”
There it is, folks. One more member of our Gracie Barra family spreading the message of Master Carlos Gracie Jr. to the world!