CLIENT: UAE Jiu Jitsu Federation
PROJECT: Jiu-Jitsu World Championship
LOCATION: Mubadala ARENA
Contributing to Build a Strong Generation
With the support and guidance of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, the UAE Jiu-Jitsu Federation was established in November 2012 as the official authority for Jiu-Jitsu in the UAE.
The Federation plays a leading role in supporting Jiu-Jitsu and contributing to building a strong generation of UAE athletes to excel at the local and international levels. The Federation’s role is to implement policies that develop the sport in collaboration with various government entities, educational institutions and other partners in order to advance the sport locally, regionally and globally.
The UAE Jiu-Jitsu Federation strives to promote the following values:
- Loyalty – Instilling a sense of loyalty and belonging among players who believe in their country and protect its achievements.
- Self Confidence – Building strong citizens that defend themselves, their families and community.
- Professionalism – Qualifying highly competent and professional players.
- Continuing Development – Working to develop our performance and resources in a highly professional manner.
- Teamwork – We are cognizant of the importance of cooperation, sharing and exchange of knowledge and expertise.
- Recognition of achievement – We value achievements, through motivation at all levels expertise.
- Sportsmanship – We are cognizant of the importance of respect and compliance with the game’s rules.
The Abu Dhabi World Professional Jiu-Jitsu Championship hosts more than 7,000 elite athletes from over 100 countries, who will fight it out for the championship titles. This week-long event features the Abu Dhabi World Youth Championship, the Jiu-Jitsu Masters Championship, and blue to black belt tournaments.
Scope of Work
- 13x days event with 5-8x crews
- registrations and activation tent
- Weigh-in & Warm up area, tournament
- Opening Ceremony
- autograph sessions & podiums
- Fans/family/friends: excited spectators
- Championship Finals Black Belts & Legends
In my teenage years I used to practice for 5-6x years quite serious Shotokan Karate, a traditional full contact martial art. With its meaning that improvements in character and mental discipline are as important as physical skill, if not more so. No doubt this shaped my personality.
Therefore it was an honor and joy alike to document the Abu Dhabi World Professional Jiu-Jitsu Championship multiple times with my team. The sheer number of ca 7,000 athletes was overwhelming. If I recall correctly during the early days of the tournament the arena’s setup allowed the organizers to have more than 10x fights at the same time. Many tens of thousand images later around the final the mats setup would change to fewer simultaneous fights until the big finals arrived which were of course broadcasted and fought out in a single setup.
From a photography point of view there are many cool angles and subjects to be captured. Having almost 2x weeks time to explore every position and angle inside the arena was a blessing and offered a wonderful playground to mentor my crew on how to improve their output and challenge their settings.
My motto was to shoot from super low angles, partly with longer lenses for diagonal shoot through fighting frames with super soft bokeh and meaningful background. Jiu-Jitsu is sometimes really fast and You got to be ready to trigger with fast frame rates to freeze the action and capture intense expressions and emotions too.