London, Ont. – March 10, 2017 – UFCW Canada Local 12R24 member and steward Jesse Plant, who works at The Beer Store in London, will be competing in a major international jiu-jitsu competition later this month. Jesse had the following to say about her upcoming appearance at the Pans IBJJF Championship in California:

“I started training for Brazilian jiu-jitsu (BJJ) three years ago and have been competing in tournaments for two years now. I wrestled competitively during my years in school. A good friend of mine thought that I might enjoy BJJ. He invited me to train with him at his academy, and he was right! I am now a competitive BJJ practitioner training out of Rail City Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu in St. Thomas, Ontario. I represent the Carlson Gracie team and will be making my first appearance competing internationally at the Pans IBJJF Championship in Irvine, California later this month.

I quickly fell in love with BJJ. The training and even the smell of the mats remind me of my time as a wrestler, and I have always been a “mat rat” involved in training and competing since I was a kid. The bond you build with your teammates is truly amazing – they are my second family. Every day that I go on the mats, I am constantly learning new lessons to improve my game and challenge myself. And best of all, I am learning to kick butt against people who are bigger and stronger than me.

I will continue to train and compete as long as I am still enjoying it. There are a few tournaments after Pans that I would like to compete in, one being the Niagara Falls Open at the end of this month. One day I would like to advance up the belt ladder and get my black belt. But for now, I will just keep training and helping my teammate’s progress. I always encourage people to come out and give BJJ a try. I understand it is outside of most people’s comfort zones. However, it is an excellent way to challenge yourself and work out without weights, and serves as a great form of self defense.”