A now-blue belt in BJJ has been catching flack on the internet after a video surfaced of him delivering a dangerous slam to his opponent in a jiu-jitsu competition.
Ruslan Kim, who trains at Aranha BJJ in Guangzhou, China, has been a black belt in kudo since 2014 and has been training jiu-jitsu since at least 2012, according to his own Instagram posts. However, this year, he was still competing in the white belt division at BJJ tournaments.
This led, ultimately, to one of his matches going viral after Redditor u/touny71 shared a video of Kim lifting one of his opponents and slamming him on his spine before triumphantly celebrating his victory. Kim has since been dubbed a “sandbagger” by many in the BJJ community for his dangerous competition practices.
Kim’s coach at Aranha, Julien Vandelli, became aware of his student’s international infamy and provided his followers with an apology and his sentiments about the whole situation. He also promoted Kim to blue belt in an apparent attempt to pacify those who claimed that Kim shouldn’t be in the white belt division.
“A message to the bjj community.
My name is Julien Vandelli, head instructor at the Aranha Jiujitsu HQ In China Guangzhou.
Recently it’s with a big regret that I learned how Ruslan’s slamming video went viral and gathered very bad comments regarding his actions.
In spite of having warned him that this could lead to injuries and even disqualification, he perhaps did not understand properly the rules of slamming and consequently kept going.
He has been grounded and has learned from his mistakes and will be mindful of not repeating if he participates in any competition that ban slams.
In response to the question why he didn’t compete as a blue belt; I was hoping to see him perform more than just takedowns (and unfortunately slams) because Jiujitsu is more than that. It was perhaps my mistake as his level could have allowed him to enter the blue belt level. He is now promoted to blue belt and will continue to improve his ground game skills and adjust his throws and takedowns.
However, in spite of all his foul actions, one very big thumbs down goes to the referees who allowed the fight to go on in ruslan’s favor. This is unacceptable as should have been disqualified right from the get go.
Once again, to all the people who are against Ruslan’s action; you do have the right to point your finger at him. But as an instructor I will put this behind and continue to form him to become a better Jiujitsu fighter. Once again, all my apologies for the discomfort towards the opponents, the public and BJJ community.
Thank you for your understanding.
Best regards “