The addition of medal-winning martial artist to Mark Zuckerberg’s resume is new. To the shock of many in the martial arts community and maybe more broadly, the founder of Facebook and Meta won gold and silver medals at his very first Brazilian jiu-jitsu competition in Redwood City, California.
The 38-year-old tech millionaire claimed to have developed an interest in the sport early in the outbreak. “Participated in my first jiu-jitsu competition and brought home some medals for the Guerrilla Jiu Jitsu squad,” he wrote in the caption of a picture of his victory posted on Instagram.
Khai “the Shadow” Wu, one of his coaches, offered this praise for his pupil: “Watching Zuck compete yesterday was quite awesome. No game was simple, and everything had to be earned. It was an honor to be able to assist with coaching and provide any guidance I could. A number of well-known athletes offered support to Zuckerberg in his new interest.
“Yo!!! F***ing fantastic Mark,” Conor McGregor wrote in response to the post. Conor is a former UFC champion and anger management student. The five-time world jiu-jitsu champion from Brazil, Bernardo Faria, praised Zuckerberg’s victory, saying: “Amazing!!! arm-bars, a triangle, and a half-guard! Wow, that’s awesome. Several other celebrities praised the software nerd-turned-athlete for his accomplishments.
Mario Lopez, a US television personality and former teen idol, replied with three fire emojis.
Other well-known individuals have also started playing the sport. The actor Ashton Kutcher, who started training in jiu-jitsu more than ten years ago, holds a brown belt in the discipline. Both comedian Russell Brand and actor Jason Statham have purple belts. Tom Hardy, who has been in the films Venom and Peaky Blinders, also participates in the UK and has taken first place honors in Wolverhampton and Milton Keynes.