With the nonstop growth of mixed martial arts and emergence of jiu jitsu competitions worldwide, it should come as no surprise that names often associated with the sport of MMA are often advancing in the ranks of BJJ just as well.
Joe Solecki is easily one of the nicest fighters I have ever interviewed so when I saw that this professional fighter was recently promoted to black belt I knew I had to talk to him about it.
Solecki currently trains out of Fitness Edge MMA in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina but originally trained at Hassetts Jiu Jitsu in New Jersey from age 6-19 before moving down south. He has been training a total of 18 years.
The lightweight fighter currently holds a 4-1 pro MMA record and is ranked the number 1 active lightweight in South Carolina by Tapology.
Joe Solecki reveals how the belt promotion went down
“I went back home to do some training and visit some family and reached out to my instructor John Hassett to see if he needed someone to do their seminar on Promotion Day.
“He scheduled me to come, and I went and taught, and after the seminar he did belt promotions. Everything was all done and wrapped up and he brought up the two assistant instructors, Jason Kinner and Tom Marino to thank them for always helping the academy.
“And then he brought me up to thank me for coming all the way up to teach the seminar. And he said we have been loyal students since day one and that he would be promoting all three of us to black belt that day.
“We were shocked. It didn’t feel like it would ever happen, and I had been training so long that I thought it would be anti climatic when the time did come, and I couldn’t have been more wrong. I got choked up for sure. And to get it from the man I have learned from and looked up to since childhood meant the world!”
Solecki also recently announced his next mixed martial arts fight will be back in New Jersey for Cage Fury Fighting Championships.