Hello Maja, can you please introduce yourself to our readers?
Hey, I’m Maja Povšnar and I’m from Slovenia. I have been training jiujitsu for about 8 years now and I’m currently a brown belt in Jiu Jitsu and Judo 2nd Dan black belt. I have competed a lot in lower belts; I was blue belt World PRO champion, silver medalist in World PRO in the purple belt division, and European IBJJF championship silver medalist 2x in purple belt. I was also 2x European JJIF champion and I took silver at World JJIF championship and I can’t wait to compete on such a level as a brown belt now.
Is it your first time participating in the Abu Dhabi World Professional Jiu Jitsu Championship?
No, actually I have participated in Abu Dhabi World PRO 3 times before, 2 times in blue belt division and one time in purple belt division. But this year I’ll be competing in the brown/black category for the first time and I couldn’t be more excited.
What is the most memorable experience from your participation?
Every single time when I compete in the Abu Dhabi World PRO I feel great, and for now I have always gone home with a medal so I really hope that this will not change this time 🙂
How did the sport of Jiu Jitsu impact you on a personal level? Why do you recommend youth to practice the sport?
Jiu Jitsu has had a tremendous impact on me. It’s a sport you fall in love with and you can’t do without. As a kid I started with judo, which I really love, but there were some moments, where I didn’t feel like going to training, going to training camp, or competition. But Jiu Jitsu is something different.
I love every second of it, every single training day, and every single moment.
I would recommend Jiu Jitsu training to youths because it teaches you discipline, it teaches you to be humble, and it’s a great sport for your mind and body.
How is your training going leading up to the ADWPJJC?
Training is going great, I think I’ve never been more prepared than I am now. I adapted my training perfectly to my work and other obligations, and I used my free time to the maximum for training. I have also significantly improved my game and tactics over the last six months, so I can’t wait to show it on the tatami.
How do you see Abu Dhabi hosting global Jiu Jitsu championships and giving the chance for athletes to compete against the best in the world?
The event in Abu Dhabi is really something special, the organizers could not organize a better competition. The fact that even currently unknown competitors have the opportunity to compete with the best in the world, I think it’s really precious and for many of us such a great opportunity to show something more.
Who influenced you the most in developing your BJJ game?
I have trained with many different people and each of them had a certain style that helped me a little in developing my BJJ game. But still, I made the biggest improvement in my game in the last year, so I can say that my current closest training partners and coaches have influenced me the most.
Would you like to give any advice to our readers that would help them either on the mat or in their lives?
I would give them the advice that guides my life as well..If you find something in life that makes you immensely happy, stick to it, no matter the circumstances. No matter if it is Jiu Jitsu, fitness, work, running, reading, whatever. Life is extremely short and only rare people are that lucky to find something that truly makes them happy, and that’s really something invaluable.