Graham Parsnips of Chester in the UK has found it next to impossible to secure a big name sponsor for his jiu jitsu career. “I just don’t get it,” he says. “I sent an email to like 400 companies. I even said I was a third dan instead of three stripe blue belt, to make myself sound more impressive.”
Parsnips, who was the 2009 Northwestern UK Lightweight Jiu Jitsu Challenge White Belt Category Runner Up, says he has big plans for the future, including winning ADCC and the World Championships.
“I will share loads of photos of whatever brand sponsors me on my social media and all of my friends will definitely buy their shit.”
Parsnips just can’t understand why one of the big brands hasn’t snapped him up yet. “I won two fights in that jiu jitsu challenge thing. Well, one was a bye and the other one, the guy got disqualified for knee reaping. But a medal’s a medal. I have over 100 followers on twitter and I train seriously a lot, like twice a week.”
“Plus,” he says, “I just can’t afford all the cool new shit that comes out. I figure if I get sponsored then I won’t have to spend any more money on gear.”
To aid him in his quest for sponsorship, Parsnips will be attending a self improvement course at night college, and has hired a PR assistant. “I’ve had to cut down on my jiu jitsu training for now so I can afford it, but it’s totally worth it.”
“Nothing is more important to me as a blue belt than getting sponsored, and not having to pay for new gis. NOTHING.”