K. Smirnov was awarded a Fifth Dan black belt

The legendary fighter and the founder of the International Grappling Federation Kęstutis Smirnovas was awarded the Fifth Dan black belt by the Dan-Kyu International Commission of the Grappling Federation. This is one of the highest achievements in martial arts.

Every athlete has a goal to be valued, so I would be lying if I said that this award is not pleasant. All in all, it is an interesting year. In June, I became the winner at the Baltic Championship in both the discipline with and without the kimono, and now this title has been awarded”, said the holder of the Fifth Dan black belt.



The official belt award ceremony was held at the traditional international camp in Palanga, where a lecture was also presented by the Brazilian legendary fighter, the Fifth Dan master of Brazilian jujitsu, Iran Mascarenhas.

As I expected, we had a top-level camp. Personally, I am most pleased that our athletes had the ideal conditions to prepare for the World Grappling Championship”, noted K. Smirnovas.

The title awarded to the founder of the Lithuanian Grappling Federation by the International Grappling Federation is the fifth in the world of martial arts. To date, his CV includes the following ratings: the Fifth MMA Bushido Dan, the Fourth Judo Dan, the Second Karate Shindoka Dan, and the Second Martial Arts Self-Defence Dan.

The Lithuanian Grappling Federation, founded by him seven years ago, from the very first days sought to popularise this sport and unite those interested in it. Currently, the National Grappling Federation unites 47 sports clubs from all over Lithuania, and the International Grappling Federation unites 27 organizations from various countries.

When I remember the first grappling competition, it even made me smile a bit. I remember there were 30 participants and we were just contemplating about how to increase that number. Currently, around 200–300 participants take part in our regular competitions. The result is good, but we are not even thinking of stopping at that number”, revealed K. Smirnovas.

The nearest event organised by the International Grappling Federation is the World Grappling Championship, which will take place on the 9th of October in Panevėžys. K. Smirnov, the holder of the Fifth Dan black belt, also plans to try his hand at this Championship.