Friday, 22 August 2014

An Interview with BJJ Funny Man Kit Dale

Today, I bring you guys an interview with Kit Dale, Australia's finest BJJ talent. He is probably best known for his rapid fast journey to black belt, his Jiu-Jitsu related comedy and of course his beard. I hope you guys enjoy the interview.

For some people who may not be familiar with you, could you please introduce yourself?

My Name is Kit Dale. I am a Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt competitor and coach, I have a comedy channel with my brother Scott in which we both write and act. I do what I enjoy in life and say what I think. Life is about having fun to me and that's what I do. I'm passionate about my work but very laid back and down to earth. 

So how exactly did you get started in Jiu-Jitsu?

I started in 2008 with my cousin. I was playing football at the time and was getting beaten up by some of the bigger tougher players so I wanted to build my confidence by trying some MMA. Soon after joining an MMA school I started doing the BJJ and really enjoyed it. In 2009 I started competing and bar from taking one year off in total from injuries I have been very consistent.

Why did you decide to move to Checkmat?

I decided to go to Checkmat after having a disagreement with the instructor about the way my old academy was being run. I wanted to help the level grow by teaching. He wanted to keep teaching himself even though he was way out of touch. Then I heard Yuri Simoes was moving over and I was really interested to do some training with him as he is an unbelievable grappler. We got along really way and I trained under him for about 5 months until he left back to California and I took over the club.

Your head instructor is Yuri Simoes. What is relationship like with Yuri? And how is it to have him as your instructor?

It was good; he is like a brother to me and helped me a lot not just technically but mentally and still does to this day. I don't see him often but he always messages me before big comps or after it and lends some advice.

Yuri Simoes and Kit Dale

Yuri has recently left the Checkmat team, and has since joined Caio Terra’s team. He has previously left Checkmat before only to return shortly later, do you think that will happen again?

No I don't think he will. He is really enjoying it with Caio Terra and so I see no reason why he would leave.

So currently you are with Checkmat, and Yuri is with Caio Terra. Are there any problems, since you are with two separate teams? 

The only people who have problems are the political extremists. I train with who I want when I want. I'm not bound to the laws of politics and if someone tries to control me that way then I would no longer represent them. I represent Checkmat but I do my own thing and they let me which is why our relationship lasts.

How is the Jiu-Jitsu scene in Australia? And how does it compare to the rest of the world?

It's very far behind at the moment, but there are a few working really hard to catch up. Unfortunately the numbers are much smaller and most people here are more interested in making money then growing the level of Australian BJJ. Otherwise we would have been a lot closer by now.

You have claimed a lot of titles in your very short career, but what would you say has been your biggest accomplishment? 

Well you can compare coloured belt titles to black belt matches. But at the time the Abu Dhabi pro purple belt gold was one of my biggest achievements, beating DJ Jackson, Felipe Pena and many other high level guys.

Last year, you had the opportunity to compete at the Copa Podio middleweight Grand Prix. What was that overall experience like? And would you do it again?

That was great. I only received my black belt shortly before then, so to be invited was an amazing thrill for me to share the stage with so many high level guys. I will never forget that experience. I really hope to be invited back soon as I want to visit Brazil again.

You have had the opportunity to fight Paulo Miyao twice, once at the 2012 Asian Open, and the second being at the 2013 WPJJC. Both of these matches are very close, but how was the overall experience fighting Miyao? 

Well he is a difficult opponent to face but a fun one. Because it's not going to be a physical war so I'm not going to be super tired, which I am glad, but technically it is very difficult. He is a specialist and the best in the world at what he does, I enjoy trying to fight him at his own game and so far have done very well losing both times by one questionable advantage. Next time I fight him I will try and enforce my will onto him instead of playing his and see how the match goes. 

Kit faces Paulo Miyao at  the 2013 WPJJC

What was your strategy going in against Miyao? And did it change at all between both of the matches?

The first time I was more interested in seeing what he does and trying to come up with a strategy then, but I couldn't figure it out in time, and lost by an advantage for his near back attack. The second time I was a lot more ready and felt I did a much better job at defending and spent a bit less energy. Unfortunately it was too little too late and the match finished with me starting to push the pace but running out of time with a near late pass.

At the worlds in 2013, you went up against Keenan Cornelius in the first round. Many consider that to be Keenan’s hardest match to date at the brown belt level, how does that make you feel? And were you concerned fighting Keenan first round? 

It's nice to know as he destroyed many people and fought many hard people at brown belt. I was concerned but more excited to get to fight him. He was bigger and more experienced so the pressure was not in me. I had a good strategy for that fight and think I did enough to win a refs decision but unfortunately a phantom advantage was given to him somewhere in that match and it was the cause of my loss in the end.

Kit against Keenan Cornelius at  the 2013 Worlds
Source: Mike Calimbas

What has been your most challenging competition match? 

My most challenging would be fighting Metamoris against Garry Tonon. This was made more difficult by the rules. 20 minute submission only No-Gi is not my style. So it was difficult trying to come up with a strategy for someone like him in this situation as it is a great style for him.

At this year’s Pan Ams, there was some confusion on your entry into the tournament. Can you clarify what exactly happened?

Well it was a last minute thing as I was originally opening a new academy at that time, but due to a building problem it was postponed till later, opening time for me to compete at the pan ams. I left two days later but wanted to see how my weight was before registering in a division. I waited three days in San Jose to see my weight, then when deciding to register it turned out the divisions closed 3 hours earlier and they would not let me enter late. It was disappointing but also good because I got to enjoy the pan ams without the stresses of competing.

Source: BJJPix

What are some of your goals for the rest of 2014? 

Get more experience at black belt. Get more exposure and spend more time acting. 

Are you considering qualifying for the 2015 ADCC?

Yes I would like to. Unfortunately there are no trials in Australia so I will have to go overseas for this. But it is definitely on the cards.

You were promoted to black belt after just four and a half years of training. Could you take us through how you achieved it so quickly?

This is true and I got it because I was smart about the way I trained and I found a method that speeds up your learning time by 4x. It was a bit of an accident from just being lazy but proved to help me a lot in the big picture. 

Has anything changed since you were promoted to black belt?

Yes the level in competition is much much higher so I need to be a lot smarter with my preparation and strategy. Otherwise still the same game just different colour belt.

You recently moved to a new gym, how is everything going with that?

It's going good. I have a lot of more serious high level competitors with me now, and we have all grown together like a family. It is run very different to what you will see in your normal gym but everyone there trusts my judgment and can see the results.

You’re pretty well known for your online funny videos. What inspired you to start making them? And do you get to do them as often as you would like?

I don't do them near as often as I would like unfortunately due to many reasons. One being free time, but ever since me and my brothers were younger we always enjoyed making films and acting. So it's only natural that we kept doing them. My brother bought a camera and started leading about how to film, direct and write and I enjoy acting in them so it's a good relationship. 

What is your weekly training regime like?

I train once during the day at lunch time in the competition class for an hour of just rounds of sparring. Then at night I teach the advanced class and sometimes jump in the specific training.

Do you do a lot of strength and conditioning workouts?

My warm-ups consist of many acrobatic exercises like flips, hand stand as such. So that is the only conditioning I get. And it's more about making me more nimble and aware than about strength and conditioning.

Personally, do you take any supplements? 

Sometimes I will take BCAAs but that's all. I eat well now so that's all I need.

Except for Jiu-Jitsu, what do you get up to in your spare time?

Filming, writing, talking to people on social media, playing console games and watching movies :)

And finally, are you ever going to shave your beard? 

Possibly, if I lose to Garry Tonon in our rematch I promised I would :)

Okay, time for the quick fire questions, they are:

1. Charmander, Squirtle or Bulbasaur? Charmander
2. Shawn Michaels or Bret Hart? Shawn
3. Automatic or Manual Transmission? Manual
4. DX or NWO? NWO
5. Honey Mustard or BBQ Sauce? BBQ
6. Resident Evil or Silent Hill? Resident Evil
7. Marcelo Garcia or Rafael Mendes? Marcelo
8. Rodolfo Viera or Roger Gracie? Rodolfo
9. PC or Console? Console
10. Frieza or Cell? Freiza
11. Hotel or Tent? Hotel
12. Tea or Coffee? Coffee
13. Spiderman or Batman? Batman
14. Dark Chocolate or White Chocolate? White
15. Berimbolo or 50/50? 50/50
16. Half Guard or Spider Guard? Half guard
17. Sting or the Undertaker? Sting
18. BBQ or Restaurant? Restaurant
19. CD or Download? Download
20. Cycle or Walk? Walk
Thank you very much Kit for the interview, before we end is there anybody who you would like to thank? 

Just the fans for being awesome supporters on what I do :) thank you.

Please like my fan page Kit Dale, and subscribe to my website ( and check out my newest DVD which shows the secrets to how I got my black belt in just over 4 years (


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