Werner Coetsee was born on the 3rd of November 1981 in South Africa. He grew up practicing many sports including Shotokan Karate where he achieved his brown belt. In 2009 he moved to Melbourne Australia where he started practicing Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu in early 2010. He finally found the martial art and sport that ticked all the boxes. His first competition was the Pan Pacific Jiu-Jitsu competition in Melbourne towards the end of 2010 which opened his eyes to the world of competing. Injuries caused some setbacks until he competed at the Victorian State Championships in 2012 placing second in his age and weight division in the white belt category. In mid 2012 Werner moved his family from Victoria to Western Australia where he joined the Legion 13 team training out of the affiliation, Gemina Mixed Martial Arts. He was promoted to blue belt on the 29th of March 2014. As a blue belt Werner placed second in the 2014 WA State Championships in the open master’s division. He received his purple belt in April 2016 and went on to place first at the 2017 WA State Championships in his age and weight division and second in the opens. He is training and preparing to enter the World Masters Jiu-Jitsu competition which will be held in Las Vegas in 2018.
Q&A Session Between Werner Coetsee and Elite Sports
Question: What will you suggest to the newcomers?
Answer: Be humble and kind, let your achievements and time on the mat’s do the talking. Put in the hard work and dedication which is required to be successful.
Question: What does it mean for you to be a fighter?
Answer: To be better than I was yesterday, not just in my jiu-jitsu skills but also as a person, father, husband, colleague and mentor.
Question: What are the essential things for the training?
Answer: Training gear, min of 3 sets of Gi and No-Gi apparel to ensure you have clean, dry gear to train in. Good nutrition and additional supplements to fuel the body during recovery after training sessions.
Question: What separates you from every other fighter in your division?
Answer: I can’t talk about other fighters but my composure and lack of excessive anxiety before competitions provide me with clarity and confidence.
Question: What is the meaning of success in your mind?
Answer: To be content as happiness and sadness is only a temporary state of mind.
Question: With whom you would like to fight, and why?
Answer: With the winner of this year’s World Masters competition in my age and weight to determine where I am at.
Question: Is there any difference b/w your common days’ diet and during competition training diet?
Answer: It depends on the competition. For larger targeted competitions preparation will start well in advance and the weight will be on point weeks out from the competition.
Question: How does a beginner will prepare for the competition? Any advice for beginners?
Answer: Remember to breath. Set small goals and expectations and regardless of the result you will learn a ton from the experience. Don’t get discouraged if your first experience doesn’t go your way.
Question: How is it helpful to have the information about your competitor?
Answer: It arms you with information which will allow you to prepare your game plan. If your opponent is a better wrestler than you it would be wise to not play that game.
Question: Is the martial arts necessary for a common person? How?
Answer: Any person can learn and enhance their life through martial arts. They do not have to be competitors. It is a healthy past time which teaches life skills, patience and humility which in turn makes the world a better place.
Question: Which moment is memorable for you in your past competitions?
Answer: My last competition where I won gold in my age and weight division. I finished both my opponents via submission. My goal was to at least win one match so I far surpassed my expectations of myself. I have had a bad run of results in the previous two competitions so this was one of those “getting the monkey of your back” feelings.
Question: How do martial arts help to build a leader?
Answer: By understanding humility and ego and that hard work and team work are essential ingredients for success.
Question: What would be your dream fight?
Answer: World Masters finals… Don’t care who my opponent is.
Question: How is the road plan necessary for any competition?
Answer: Planning, visualizing and preparation is important for success.
Question: Do you have any advice for your competitors?
Answer: No not really. Good luck and let’s have fun.
Question: How much importance has sports gear in any competition?
Answer: Gear is very important as it can affect the outcome of your match. If you are equipped with quality apparel that is light and comfortable it will make you feel good which will result in better performance.
Question: What should we learn from the legends /or from the seniors? Who is your inspiration?
Answer: That success requires hard work, sacrifice, and dedication. The people that inspire me are those competitors who train part-time because they have careers and other commitments and still make the time and put in the effort to achieve good results.
Question: To whom you would like to compliment for your success?
Answer: To my parents who taught me that success requires endurance and dedication.
Question: Who is your favorite legendary fighter? Why?
Answer: Andre Galvao, his of similar age as me and a true legend with multiple World and ADCC championship golds. His hard work, dedication, perseverance and ethics are a real inspiration.