Yuan Yi is a Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt under Professor Takeo Antonio Tani of UFC Gym Singapore. He is currently running his own team, Galaxy Jiu-jitsu, in Changsha, China.
Yi began his training in 2012. At that time, he had already graduated from university and was working in a bank, but exposure to jiu-jitsu-related training and competition videos during his college years compelled him to explore the martial art further. Hungry for a deeper understanding of the sport, Yi resigned from his bank job and changed the direction of his life by practicing jiu-jitsu full-time at Shanghai BJJ.
Over the course of his journey to black belt, Yi has competed over 20 times and has taught seminars in over 20 cities across China on all aspects of jiu-jitsu and in both Gi and No Gi. By the end of 2019, Yi earned his black belt in Singapore under Takeo Tani.
Yi’s philosophy about his own jiu-jitsu is that it should be comprehensive and complete, and his goal is to be well-rounded in the Gi, in No Gi, and in MMA. ‘Jiu-jitsu is a competitive sport for me, but even more, it is a martial art,’ he said. ‘I attach great importance to the basics and require myself to understand them thoroughly. I must be very proficient at both left and right sides, and I must be able to make changes and apply them to different scenarios.’
Flow-rolling is one of Yi’s favorite aspects of training; it’s his chance to pay attention and appreciate the fluency, coherence, and beauty of the movements. To sum up his own style, Yi says he combines strengths of all schools of thought with his own advantages. He looks up to practitioners including Romulo Barral, Gordon Ryan, and the Mendes brothers.
- IBJJF Asian Open Tokyo Brown Belt Class 2nd Runner-up 2018;
- Boxing City Strikes MMA Shenzhen Division Champion 2019;
- Jiu-Jitsu Asian Championship 85 kg Brown Belt 2019 – 1st Place;
- Part of the Chinese Jiu-Jitsu National Team 2019;
- Association of Southeast Asian Nations Jiu-Jitsu Open Double Champion in Jiu-Jitsu with No Difference in Level 2019;
- Asian Jiu-Jitsu Open Brown Belt Adult Group 82 kg 2019 – 3rd Place;
- Shanghai AJP Jiu-Jitsu Open Black Belt Group Champion with No Gi / Gou Uniform Runner-up 2020;
- Beijing AJP Jiu-Jitsu Open Black Belt 77 kg Champion 2021;
- Nanning AJP Jiu-Jitsu Open Black Belt Class Champion / No Difference Champion 2021;
- Hangzhou National Jiu-Jitsu Championship Men's 77 kg Champion Best Technique Award 2022;
- AL Leone Jiu-Jitsu Invitational Champion 2022.