Hello Pablo, can you please introduce yourself to our readers?
Hello everyone, my name is Pablo Lavaselli, I was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina. I’ve started training Jiu Jitsu when I was 17 years old and, since the moment I started, I committed to the sport with the intention of being professional and the best at it.
Is it your first time participating in Abu Dhabi World Professional Jiu Jitsu Championship?
I’m currently the 77kg Abu Dhabi World Pro Champion and I’m working my way to the second title as a black belt. This time due to IBJJF competition, I’m very light on daily basis (73kg) so I’ve decided going to the 69kg which is a new challenge physically and mentally.
It’s going to be my 5th time competing at the World Pro, and I’m always happy of how they really are pushing the sport to the next level: treating the athlete as a professional, attracting more people to the sport, popularizing the sport in the country (schools, army, etc.) and the whole world.
How is your training going leading up to the ADWPJJC?
My training is not different from the other tournaments. The only thing we may switch is the strategy due to the scoring system, but the hard training is always there no matter the tournament.
How did the sport of Jiu Jitsu impact you on a personal level? Why do you recommend youth to practice the sport?
I’ve always had a strong personality and the desire to succeed. What Jiu Jitsu added to my life was where to put all that energy. Besides that it has brought me the best things in my life: my best friends, my girlfriend, meeting people all around the world and traveling.
I recommend strongly to put your child in Jiu Jitsu to build his/her character. It is a sport where you have physical and mental pressure, and you have to do problem-solving on those circumstances. Therefore, if they are able to achieve that, they will have a good life no matter what they choose to do for living.
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?
Again, it’s the only federation providing this type of opportunity for the athletes. I’m from Argentina, so it would be hard to travel and compete in Abu Dhabi, but with the system they have built all over the years, they reach every talented athlete from all around the world and for that, I’m very grateful to them. If one day I have the chance, I would like to host an AJP in my country to share this beautiful league and show my gratitude to them.
Who influenced you the most in developing your BJJ game?
Tough question. Many have influenced my Jiu Jitsu since I’ve started my journey, but the first ones were the Mendes Brothers. I have been studying their game since I’m was a white belt, copying them and so on. Since I left my gym as a new brand blue belt with my best friends, we never had a professor teaching us, so we had to study the best and then try those stuff between our self and finding ways to improve. So it was pure trial and error until we found the small details to perfect our Jiu Jitsu.
Also, with time I started moving to other athletes like the Miyao Brothers, Leandro Lo, Rodolfo Vieira, Felipe Pena, Lepri and the list keeps on going. Also, other people like Gordon and Danaher switch my BJJ view and improved my game by a lot with their DVDs and tape study. I think every athlete have something to add to your game, therefore you have to study everyone who is bringing something new to the game.
Would you like to give any advice to our readers that would help them either on the mat or in their lives?
On the mats, focus on daily improvement. What is going to make the difference in the long run is skill acquisition, and that’s not related to beating everyone all day during training. Schedule your training, your goals. Planning is crucial to achieve anything in Jiu Jitsu or life.