The Barbary pirates operated from North Africa, based primarily in the ports of Salé, Algiers, Tunis, and Tripoli. This area was known in Europe as the Barbary Coast.

They captured thousands of ships and repeatedly raided coastal towns. As a result, residents abandoned their former villages of long stretches of the coast in both Spain and Italy.

The raids were such a problem that coastal settlements were seldom undertaken until the 19th century.

The scope of their activity began to diminish in the latter part of the 17th century, as the more powerful European navies started to compel the Barbary States to make peace and cease attacking their shipping.

The name spread to San Francisco and was the subject of a number of major Hollywood films. Before becoming a major box-office star, John Wayne made many B-pictures, including Flame of The Barbary Coast, a romantic triangle set in San Francisco circa 1906 with the great quake as a back drop, which was nominated for several technical Oscars. article, Wikimedia photo article, Wikimedia photo

For our beloved San Francisco, it was in the mid-1860s that the term “Barbary Coast” came into being. It derived its name from its similarity to the notorious Barbary Coast in Africa, and stretched from Montgomery to Stockton Streets along Pacific Street and branched off into Kearny and Grant Ave.

Portsmouth Square near harbor in 1851 — San Francisco during the Gold Rush. article, Wikimedia photo article, Wikimedia photo

Given the recent dearth of fully competitive women’s wrestling not only in San Francisco but the entire Bay Area, there’s a new Marshal in town and her name is Syd Blakovich.

Her women’s wrestling group is entitled Barbary Coast Grapplers (BCG) and instead of beautiful turn of the century call girls and muscular brawlers covered in trail dust from their quest for gold; the new Barbary Coast is filled with Professors.

Yes, you read that correctly.

Please take a seat.

Would you like to meet them?

Syd Blakovich article, photo

                                                                                              article, photo

According to her site BCG was founded by Syd Blakovich, a former professional MMA fighter. Syd has been practicing martial arts for more than a decade. She has a passion for all things grappling, especially Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Her primary focus is safety and education, infusing others with the knowledge.

Located in Northern California’s breath taking scenic Bay Area, Barbary Coast Grapplers is home to an elite team of female fighters specializing in authentic competitive session wrestling. article, Wikimedia photo article, Wikimedia photo

Whether you are interested in becoming a skilled and devoted student or looking to find top level female grapplers, Barbary Coast Grapplers offer both premier instruction and competitive sparring.

They certainly have the credentials.

They passionately express, “Being a member is a journey not a destination. We are very passionate about grappling and want to make sure that you are too. Grappling is not merely a form of exciting exercise, but a way of life for us. We enjoy both the beauty of what it has to offer as an art form and the power of its technique. We acknowledge that sharing this with you is an intimate and special act.

Look elsewhere if you are looking for cat fight, faux wrestling, or sensual/sexual activities. Barbary Coast Grapplers is a PURE grappling training center and we take our art form very seriously.”

Very good Professor Syd. Message received. Being taught by Professors never sounded so good.

For those of us who are long-time fans of the women’s wrestling industry, Syd is a well-known name and her string of victories and conquests in many private companies speaks for itself. She is Fem Competitor to always take seriously and a warrior to be reckoned with.

Professor Jayogen is a true athlete with a heart of gold. article, Barbary Coast Grapplers photo article, Barbary Coast Grapplers photo

If you are looking for a beautiful women that can hold a conversation while she crushes you with her strong thighs; Jayogen’s charm is as stunning as her physique.

We concur. Her strong feminine thighs are absolutely gorgeous and sexy if we may say so without raising our hand.

She has an extensive martial arts and sports background including experience in competitive collegiate wrestling.

Jayogen enjoys playful sessions but can turn up the power for more competitive matches.

In our opinion her signature match was against the top journey level fighter Bella Rossi in a match that saw a titanic struggle go back and forth and remained close up until the end. As a newcomer, Jayogen earned a Barbary coastline of respect.

Professor Grace Romo has been a force on the scene for some time as well. article, Barbary Coast Grapplers photo article, Barbary Coast Grapplers photo

She has wrestled under other names as well so some might be a little confused.

We first saw her in what could be described as her signature match a few years ago against the San Jose champion Isamar. She went by the name of Kim then and based upon her performance against one of the industry’s great recruiters and champions, Kim can clearly wrestle in the upper echelon against any Fem Competitor.

Here is how she is self-described. “Professor Grace Romo has been competing in the grappling arts for over a decade. She has many elite tournament victories under her belt.  Her style is a mix of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Sambo, and wrestling.  When she’s not sparring, she’s in the gym lifting heavy…

Professor Grace Romo is not for the faint of heart.

With a body that is as strong as her chiseled good looks, Professor Romo has spent the last decade refining her grappling skills in tournaments, in sessions, and in the gym. She is a powerhouse of talent with a crushing top game that will leave you breathless and wishing for more. She will push you beyond where you thought you could go in the most calculated of ways. You will easily find yourself entangled in her long lean body like a fly before the spider, but do not fret. Her high level submissions are executed with the utmost control. Even if you are new to the grappling art, Professor Romo can show you the true beauty and passion of the “Gentle Art.” The Professor is also a well decorated disciplinarian and can whip you into shape faster than you can say burpee.

Looking for a little extra motivation and more dedication in your training? School’s in session with Professor Romo.”

The Barbary Coast was born during the California Gold Rush of 1849, when the population of San Francisco was growing at an exponential rate due to the rapid influx of tens of thousands of miners trying to find gold. The early decades of the Barbary Coast would be marred by persistent lawlessness, gambling, administrative graft, vigilante justice, and prostitution, however with the passage of time the city’s government would gain strength and competence, and the Barbary Coast’s maturing entertainment scene of dance halls and jazz clubs would influence American culture.

Female Competition International and Magazine would like to welcome Barbary Coast Grapplers to our great global female wrestling industry. With their fresh approach, dedication and innovative teaching methods, we’re confident like the old Barbary Coast influenced America’s love of the arts; the new BCG will have a positive impact on the world’s love of competitive women’s wrestling.

These Professors make going back to school and enjoying “the wrestling experience” a life altering educational journey.

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Sources:, Wikipedia,,, FCI Elite Competitor,, photos thank you Wikimedia Commons.