Mackenzie Dern, Grappler of the Month!!!!

    Mackenzie Dern, a purple belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, began learning the martial art when she was just 3 years old. Her training started under her black belt father, Megaton Dias in Phoenix, Arizona and continued in kid’s classes, taught by her stepmother, Luka Dias, also a black belt competitor. Mackenzie competed in the juvenile division and then moved to the adult division at 14 years old. This past June, at 17 years old, after winning her division and the open division at the 2010 World Championships, Mackenzie was awarded a purple belt by her father while receiving her gold medals on the podium. Mackenzie divides her time training in Arizona under her father with time also spent in San Diego training under Leticia Ribeiro as well as at the Gracie San Diego Academy, and in Brazil at the Gracie Humaita Academy. In order to dedicate completely to the sport of jiu jitsu, Mackenzie graduated early from high school. This affords her the ability to continue traveling, competing and training as much as possible.

Mackenzie’s plans for the upcoming season consist of multiple tournaments, seminars, and of course ongoing training. On January 15th, she will be competing in the Abu Dhabi Trials in Portugal. Following Abu Dhabi, she will assist her dad in his seminar tour through Europe. Mackenzie plans to relocate to Brazil in February while still returning to both San Diego and Arizona before tournaments. She also plans to compete at the European, Pan American and World tournaments. Her future goals include becoming a black belt world champion, helping jiu-jitsu become a popular sport among women and eventually opening her own academy. Thus far, Mackenzie has been able to claim multiple titles in national and international competitions, some of which are listed below.
4x World Champion
3x No-gi World Champion
2x American National Champion 
European Champion
U.S. Open Champion
Rio International Champion – Weight and Absolute
South American Champion – Weight and Absolute 
CBJJE World Champion – Weight and Absolute

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