At 27 years old, Jackson Douglas is Checkmat’s bet in the super heavyweight division of the 2022 Pan in Kissimmee, Florida. With Lucas Leite’s teachings combined with his own training, Jackson is confident of a good performance this Saturday, April 9th, the day the black belt disputes begin.
For Jackson, the mental factor could be a turning point during the Pan American campaign. He reports learning important concepts from Lucas and Léo Vieira, his mentors.
“Honestly, I don’t know how I differ from other athletes. But one thing I do know: my mentors Lucas Leite and Léo Viera have been transforming my mindset in a surprising way. The black belt is the apex of competition in the sport, and I realized that I’ve been focusing on getting the positions right, without allowing counterattacks and stuff like that”, details Jackson.
The athlete participated in some of the Federation’s tournaments in his preparation process for the Pan. In his own eyes, he highlights the results but emphasizes improving his skills in the sport’s elite.
“The last few events were good, but not great. I had two serious injuries, but I still had relevant results. In my game, I don’t think about changing anything. I just want to train more to always be in a comfortable position, whether it’s guarding or passing. I also have my mind in perfect condition to just let my Jiu-Jitsu flow”, he reflects.
In addition to being a competitor, Jackson is a referee at the biggest Jiu-Jitsu tournaments around the United States. Over there, he has noticed that Grappling has taken on gigantic proportions and may, yes, even pass the popularity of Jiu-Jitsu with gi.
“Without a doubt, No-Gi Jiu-Jitsu will become as big as the gi version. I dare say that even bigger, at least in the USA, where the Americans have a very passionate culture for shows, and we can’t contest the No-Gi always gives a show”, points out Jack, before closing.