Name: Ben Hills
Gym/ Location: Next Generation Liverpool
BJJ Rank: Brown Belt
Weight Class: Heavyweight
BJJ brown belt Ben Hills is a fierce competitor with an extensive martial arts background, including childhood judo and Thai boxing. He started in BJJ at 14 years old. Head coach at Next Generation Liverpool, Paul Rimmer, is the man who got Hills started. Says Hills: “I went (to the gym) initially looking for a Thai boxing class and stumbled into a BJJ class that Paul was running. I ended up giving it a go, and was hooked. No kids classes back then, so you either survived with the adults or you didn’t. I was gripped.” Being thrown into the deep end and learning to float is often the best way to learn something after all. Next Generation is renowned as one of the best gyms in the North West. You can read my interview with head coach Paul Rimmer here.
Hills has competed countless times, including such events as Empire Grappling Invitational, BJJ Outliers, Grapplekings, Pantheon and he is a Grapplefest veteran. Hills’ last fight was at Empire Grappling Invitational Vs Liam Cann in July, 2020 where he won a unanimous decision. Cann stepped in last minute at Polaris and beat Hills teammate Chris Fishgold, so Hills knew he would be a tough competitor.
Hills’ best fight was at Grapplefest 7 Vs James Walters, which Hills won by submission by guillotine choke. Grapplefest 7 was a great card, hosting the likes of Craig Jones, Ellis Younger, Jed Hue, Molly McCann, Tom Halpin, Hills and some other established fighters, with a lot of submission finishes. Hills’ favorite submission is “any necktie” and he labels his grappling style as “technical.”
Hills is a brown belt competitor who’s talents have been coming more to the forefront in recent years, achieving a superfight record (as of 2019/20) of 10-2 so keep your eye out, because you’ll probably be seeing and hearing a lot more of him.