Episode 041

Born in Rio de Janeiro Fabiana Borgs @fborgesjiujitsu, started training jiu-jitsu at the age of 11 and began competing by the age of 14.

In 2008, at 20 years old, she arrive to the United States, invited by her friend Miriam Cardoso to teach at Gracie Barra, a Brazillian Jiu Jitsu organization with over 500 schools, in Washington. In 2010 she moved to California to work at Gracie Barra Head Quarters. She was then given the opportunity to teach at the Head Quarters for a couple years where she lead the Women’s Program.

She now operates and co owns Gracia Barra San Antonio

Fabiana gracefully let Brandon and Daniel participate in a training session before this interview, where they got a 101 on getting their asses kicked. 

Here is a list of her accolades

2010 World Silver Medallist

1st in American Nationals 2011

2nd on Pan American Championship 2011

3rd on Worlds Championship 2011

2 times World Champion

2x Pan American Champion

2x American National Champion

7x Brazilian Nationals Champion

We met Fabi through Couchsurfing and stayed with her for two nights. Little did we know we were staying with a world renown Brazilian jiu-jitsu champion. Seeing that we had an opportunity to interview such an esteemed guest we seized the opportunity. 

In the show we went deep not into just Fabi's journey to Brazilian jiu-jitsu greatness but also the kind of mental toughness, work ethic and the transformation it takes to go from from athlete to coach. Fabi shares stories and examples of her ups and downs on her path. From her first day in the gym at 11 years old to how she seperates work vs passion. We know you'll enjoy this episode as much as we did!


Brandon: Before we begin today’s talk, I’d like to share how we met and how we got connected. CouchSurfing.

 

Fabiana: CouchSurfing, connecting people.

 

Brandon: Everywhere. I’ve been using it for the entire trip. Me and Daniel we’ve stayed in some amazing people’s places. They let us into their home. Some reason they got really warm and really close to us. You know, the first week we’re in Salt Lake City. These people just let us ride into their house. We only put in for two days. We ended up staying an entire week. Sending mail to their house, everything. But yeah, they were sweethearts. They were great. Even in San Antonio before we stayed with you – the gentleman, that dog. I know you heard us talk about that.

 

Fabiana: He was nice, he was nice.

 

Brandon: The gentleman is a great guy but that dog. And lo and behold, we decided to switch tonight and we got to stay with you and then as I found out, you know, right when we got here. We jumped into going to your Jiu-Jitsu class. And then before this interview, I’m doing my research and my homework and you’re this World Champion. Yeah, woah, indeed. You just don’t see these amazing people right in front of you.

 

Fabiana: Yeah, you guys are too nice that’s why people like you. And yes, CouchSurfing you guys are my third guest in – I had a luck with all – the people they are coming in very interest people and yes, I’m that World Champion in Jiu-Jitsu.

 

Brandon: It’s not easy being the best, right?

 

Fabiana: No, it’s a hard work.

 

Brandon: I know, I know.

 

Fabiana: You know it, you’re an athlete.

 

Brandon: Now with all the hype around Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, the origin of jujitsu gets a bit overlooked but it’s from Japan. How long has this martial art been practiced in Japan and when and where did it come to Brazil?

 

Fabiana: Well, I think, since 1800s. To Brazil it came in on 1903 if I’m not mistaking. Mitsuyo Maeda and he was the first one to teach Carlos Gracie back in Brazil when the Japanese were moving to Brazil running from Japanese war or whatever was happening there. Yeah, that was the first contact that Brazilians had with Jiu-Jitsu and it was always through Master Carlos Gracie Sr., which is also the founder of Gracie Barra, which is the school you guys train at on Friday.

 

Brandon: Still running. Now Japanese Jiu-Jitsu, it seems to have its origin more in military usage. Where the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu seemed to be used for the smaller athlete and looking for an advantage against a larger opponent, as well as self-defense, which I know you’re a huge proponent. Is that the case? Is that where the difference is right there?

 

Fabiana: Yeah, the Japanese were more kind of Judo style. They didn’t have so much of the ground technique. They had more the takedowns, some immobilizations and then when Carlos Gracie being a small person he tried to change a little bit, making it possible for small guys to training and take advantage of somebody’s weight to control the person and have full control of the person with chokes, arm bars, all the locks possible.

 

Brandon: Now when I see, you know, we’re talking about more of the grappling, more of the ground stuff that Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, if you want to say, “encapsulates.” You know, I don’t see any other Asian martial art besides I can think Sumo, you know, where you’re having more of that contact. A lot of the Chinese or even Japanese, it’s very with the hands and it’s a lot with the kicking and less of the contact.

 

Fabiana: Yeah, and a lot of solo techniques kind of dance. I think Jiu-Jitsu is more a full contact sport. More realistic sport because whenever you get in a fight if the person meets the first punch, you’re going to get close, you’re going to get to the ground, you’re going to get together and that’s the most realistic fight and way of self-defense we have out there. Yeah, it is great when you watch a lot of these videos on YouTube, you know, you can see like someone who is a master – not a master or just somebody who is practicing Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu or any Jiu-Jitsu or even mixed martial art, you know, they have a bit of each thing and they're going to look for the different tactics whether it’s more of the grappling or the coming together and throw it to the ground. You know, a lot of those other martial arts just can’t keep up with it and they just get destroyed.

 

Fabiana: It grew a lot and especially the MMA like you said, a lot of people come from different backgrounds but most of them went there on the ground or whenever you get close contact then it’s kind of over – yeah.

 

Brandon: Did you have any family members who trained the Jiu-Jitsu or are the first in your family?

 

Fabiana: No, I had a cousin. Him and I started together, so by first class it was actually with my uncle. My uncle took me there and he stopped it. Nowadays we say I can kick his butt, which I think is real.

 

Brandon: Do you want any more of this?

 

Fabiana: No, thank you.

 

Brandon: I’m going to finish it.

 

Fabiana: Yeah, I started with our cousin but he stopped a little while – he stopped and I kept going. I had a lot of friends, they started with me and they all stopped. I think Jiu-Jitsu brought more into my life than to their lives.

 

Brandon: What initially brought you into the gym? In Rio, right? 

 

Fabiana: Yes.

 

Brandon: I know many athletes who in the US use sports as a social class elevator, you know, to get you out of certain level whether it’s maybe, you know, you’re on a lower economic standpoint or you’re – for example the American Football. I see it as, you know, a lot of ways to get out, you know, poverty. It’s like this is one of the only things they can – they can still use their physical abilities to, you know, dictate how well or how much better of a life they can make for themselves. 

 

Fabiana: So I was looking for a sport. I knew I wanted to do a sport. I grew in the hills in Brazil, we call Mojo. I grew up on that and I was looking for a sport. I tried soccer. I tried basketball. I tried triathlon and runner and it didn’t click with me. I didn’t feel – there was part or something I didn’t feel it was fun or anything like that. When I tried Jiu-Jitsu it was a huge community. Everybody is cheering you. I was a young 11 years old but I remember my first class. I got a mount and I got the arm bar and since then I’m in love, in love of Jiu-Jitsu, in love with the feeling that you have after training. And just everyday got more and more in love with Jiu-Jitsu.

 

Brandon: Uh-huh, but it was the uncle or your cousin that initially got you in there?

 

Fabiana: Actually no, it was myself. I had the thought. I went and look for – I remember, my mom and my dad, they always work. So they didn’t have the time to go there with me to sign up. My uncle, he went with me. He always would take us but I got the paperwork, talked to my mom, my dad signed up and they gave me the money. I went back and “Hey, I’m going to sign up” and I start to training Jiu-Jitsu. Yeah, kind of crazy for 11 years old to say, “Hey, I’m going to train Jiu-Jitsu.”

 

Brandon: No, I could see it myself with basketball. Just always, you know, I think it was a godmother, you know, like someone like an aunt, you know, close non blood related family – friend of the family. And she gave this Michael Jordan jersey, had me started watching basketball. And my parents never played basketball. Didn’t watch it much and then, you know, I’m four years and old and I’m saying, “Hey, can we watch Michael Jordan? Can you put this game on.” They’re like, “What the hell are you talking about? Who? What?” And you know, I remember just sitting right in front of the TV as close as I can, you know, just like, “Okay, and I’m learning and I’m piecing together.” I even tell – I remember having like a 4-foot tall basketball hoop right in my living room. And I’m watching people do stuff on TV and just say, “Okay,” I’m wrapping the ball around my belly and dunking it in the hoop and just already like taking mental pieces of it and just always having a B, like ingrained in what I wanted to do and no one told me that’s just it, just, “Here’s a basketball.” I was like, “Oh, this is the thing I want to do. I swear to God.”

 

Fabiana: You know, it’s funny because my dad just saw me training in 2013. I’ve been training since 1999. In Brazil -- not it Brazil but on the poor side of Brazil, people work too much. I remember my mom living to go to work at 6:30 and come back at 7:00-8:00 and then work at home making food and making sure we were ready for the next day. So they didn’t have the time. It can sound crazy like, “Oh, your mom never saw you training.” But they didn’t have the time and I think they trust me. I had a good dad on my shoulders. So they always trust me. And in 2013 was the first time my dad actually saw me sparring and I could see on his eyes like the proud. I was with this big guy, [inaudible 00:15:30], I was controlling him and got him on a triangle and I saw my dad like, “Woah, that’s my little girl.” And now whenever he goes to trips I’m with them. He always ask, “Can I go watch you train? Can I go watch you train?” So it’s fun and good to see that.

 

Brandon: No, it’s great, so mom and dad will still ask me, “Oh, you’re playing? I want to come. I want to come watch.”

 

Fabiana: I think now they have like a more relaxed in life. They are not so busy trying to make a living for us. So it’s easier for them to enjoy more with the time us and all that. 

 

Brandon: Now I’m going to go take it back. It’s your first – you are 14 at your first major competition and were you competing for a cash prize? What was there anything other than doing what you love on your mind or were you competing then?

 

Fabiana: Yeah, so I’m 14 – when I was 14, I competed on the Worlds back in Brazil – when was it? At Tijuca. I was 14, I was competing the adults division. Back then it was possible to that, right now they are more very strict with age and keeping people in their age group.

 

Brandon: Is that due to like injury?

 

Fabiana: Legal stuff and something like that. But back in the day – then, no. So I got third place on the Worlds and then I was 16 at that time I believe – No, 14. I was 14, yes.

 

Brandon: 14, yeah. I know you better than yourself.

 

Fabiana: You did a good research. I was 14 and I got third place on the Worlds as a blue belt. And then from there just kept going.

 

Brandon: But was there anything in terms of like, “Wow. If there was a cash prize on this.”

 

Fabiana: No.

 

Brandon: Or “If I won this, I’m going to help my family.”

 

Fabiana: No, back then unfortunately, no. Back then it would be nice to get the title, to get the medal and I did earn a cash prize but in different way. I went to a private school in Brazil. In private school is expensive, I believe, anywhere you go. And I got a scholarship. So that was a huge cash prize and that’s how I also took me out of the favela’s mentality – the favela life style. Seeing those kids going to private school hanging it out with them, they helped me a lot. So it was a huge – now I can see it. It was a huge cash prize. So for me I would – for me to stay in the school, I would have to win. So it was a win and win situation. I have to win in Jiu-Jitsu to keep on the private school and I had take a good grades to stay in Jiu-Jitsu. It was both one pushing each other, you know.

 

Brandon: And now whenever you’re competing, does any of that come into play because I’m sure there’s more cash opportunities.

 

Fabiana: Now there is -- There is more tournament with cash prize.

 

Brandon: I know we talked about in like the Middle East they are huge on cash prize tournaments and even the education of Jiu-Jitsu. It’s, you know, even in regular schooling out there, in their physical education programs.

 

Fabiana: Yeah, they are more like in Abu Dhabi they have one tournament that it pay $6,000 to the first place, $15,000 for the open – 15 or 30? I think it’s 15 for the first place in open division. We have a IBJJF that gives $10,000 for the first place on the rank. Yeah, so right now yes, we have more money coming in, but back then not so much or if they did it was a little prize, you know, [inaudible 00:19:25] or a TV or Bike or something like that.

 

Brandon: I know you are recently scheduled to go to Japan for a tournament.

 

Fabiana: Yeah.

 

Brandon: And what was going to on there?

 

Fabiana: It was the Asian Open, it didn’t happen though. But it was the Asian Open, a big tournament back there. We have the Major Federation of Jiu-Jitsu and they do tournaments everywhere – Europe, Brazil, Asia – so that was a big one for me to go but because of Harvey … 

 

Brandon: Yeah, Harvey got both of us.

 

Fabiana: Yes.

 

Brandon: Harvey stopped us but then [inaudible 00:20:04]  but this interview wouldn’t happened.

 

Fabiana: Yes. Everything happen for a reason.

 

Brandon: If you say so. I didn’t say that.

 

Fabiana: We just find out later.

 

Brandon: Now mindset – mindset is a huge thing and we try to talk about that was like, you know, how do you differentiate now, you know, when you’re 14 you’re talking about, “Okay, I just love this,” you know, there’s nothing really on your mind. It’s like, “Okay, I’m just doing this because I love it, I’m good at it, I’m getting good positive feedback.” and people are saying, “Wow.” clapping like she’s good wow. You’re getting praise from it. Where does the split happen? Where does it become like, “Okay, I’m just doing this – I got to go to the gym today.” And it becomes like a job almost. 

 

Fabiana: Yes.

 

Brandon: How do you separate those or do you now separate them and they are still one?

 

Fabiana: You mean the passion in the work or?

 

Brandon: At work versus passion and passion versus work.

 

Fabiana: Yeah, I don’t feel that I work. I honestly don’t. Even though, I feel actually – let me correct that. I feel that I work when I have to stop in front a computer and do the office stuff but when I’m on the mat, I have such a pleasure teaching and seeing people improving that it doesn’t feel like work. I love putting my Gi in teaching and talking to people and touching people. It’s fun that I always say to my students that when I was a kid I wish – I had a dream that I want to work on a uniform and in my mind it was a white uniform. 

So in Brazil a lot of doctors they dress white. So I always thought, “Oh, I want to be a doctor.” No, probably that wasn’t on my mind, you know. I that for like being a Jiu-Jitsu instructor, my favorite key is the white Gi and I help people with Jiu-Jitsu. It’s a very good tool. So I want to say there are days that I’m not – I don’t have those days that I’m like, “Okay, today I have to teach or I don’t want to train.” But then like you said then the mindset will come like, “No, let’s go.”

Those days I always think you have to give the best class ever because that’s what you love to do. Those day where I’m like, “Oh, I have to teach today or I have to train today.” I have a little switch in my mind that I say, “You’re going to teach the best class you’ll ever done it.” And it works by the end of the day I have the feel that endorphin going back on me and the feeling of like, “Yes, this is why I love do it.” And the next day it’s bad and the next day is better.

 

Brandon: No, I think it’s similar to the competition we talked about. That even though you’re not on the mat or I’m not on a basketball court anymore, I want to be the best at whatever I do and it’s like, “I don’t know, going to pick it up, going to suck it up, like no, no, no.” Even though when I was at the Jiu-Jitsu mat yesterday and this girl Alexa much, much better than me. I’m going to go my all. Even in one point, I think, I almost got out of her – her foot hold and I was on top of her and I’m looking over to you, “Is that it? Is that it? What do I do now? No more technique.” 

But, you know, it’s that mindset. It’s the mindset of, you know, even though you’re on the mat or you’re not on the mat and even when you’re training. Like you have to be able to replicate whatever it is that you’re going to have to do on the court, on the practice field. You’re going to have to do that in the gym. That way you’re ready for every single situation. I run into that myself when I’m coaching and teaching kids like, “If we can’t do it here, it’s not going to happen in the game.”

 

Fabiana: Yes, you got to train like you we’re fighting. If you’re going to compete, then train like you’re fighting. I tell that to my students I’m like, “If you would say to yourself, ‘I’m going to compete.’ you’re setting a goal and then you do not train like it’s so – you’re not going to achieve the goal. It doesn’t matter because you got to train like you’re a fighter. You got to train like you’re competing.” And I think that’s a huge difference that athletes and most of the – I would say most of the successful people or all successful people have. That’s the difference, we have the mindset, we have the switch. We do stuff that we don’t want to do it. We don’t want to do it. Sometimes we don’t want to wake up 5am and go for a run because you have to lose weight.

 

Brandon: Nope.

 

Fabiana: Or wake up – stay training until 10pm doing drills. You don’t want to do it but then you have to. You know you have to and that’s the difference of people that are not successful, they are not. People that are successful, they do things that they don’t want to do it, but they know that it’s necessary to do it to achieve the goals that they want to.

 

Brandon: Absolutely, it’s the sacrifice. So even though, you know, everything you do and everything that positive may come in your life, some has to be given away. There’s that contrast, you know, the yin yang. You can’t have life without death. You can’t have love without hate. You know, as much as you may despise one side of the something, the greatness of the other side can’t happen without it. And you see that just with, you know, the sacrifice you have to put in to training whether it’s to be a most successful person of your career – in your career. Or the type of style of work you have or the athlete, you know, that person had to give up and do so much. In order, you know, to develop that craziness and but then again when develop all that then the discipline comes in because you have it there. You know you’re going to do it, waking up at 5:00 in the morning to cut weight before a match which you may have to do. 

It’s already there, you’re like, “Okay, no, I know I have to do this, it’s going to be there.” But it even starts earlier and I actually notice this with my mom. Something that, you know, just she use to read this little cards like affirmation cards to me and, you know, just constantly throwing those positive reinforcement. The positive reinforcement is reading a page in a book on the way to school and just like, “Oh, where does all these positivity I have come from?” I couldn’t have had it, you know, just all of a sudden click in and then pop up, you know, it’s the that is just like one kind of discipline right there. That’s like a third party discipline. Something that you didn’t do on your own but that would help to initialize – 

 

Fabiana: You’re asking the wrong person about English.

 

Brandon: Just something that would initiate a discipline for you in the future so it’s interesting to watch now and finally pick up on those things and be aware of them, “Wow.” You can be picking up disciplines from third parties and you don’t even know it.

 

Fabiana: And you get addicted. Once you reach a goal and you see that you can reach the goal, you get addicted. Let me set another goal. Let me see if I can – the challenges.

 

Brandon: It’s the stimulus we talked about.

 

Fabiana: Yeah.

 

Brandon: As human beings we love stimulus because maybe it’s not the task itself is the stimulus but the feeling we get from it, you know, the hormones that it helps release in our minds this is, “Oh.” You know, praise – “People like this? I’m going to keep on doing it.” For example, you know, with young boys, teasing and that’s how, you know, that’s a sign or showing of affection. And you see these, you know, young boys teasing young girls, you know, they are teenagers or even younger than that and it’s like, “Well no, these boys [inaudible 00:27:24] .” This is how he shows affection. This is a evolutionary trait that we have used to – over thousands of years. Don’t punish somebody and you see a kid get in trouble in school like, “You’re punishing for doing something that’s--”

 

Fabiana: I don’t agree 100% with you on that but that’s another podcast.

 

Brandon: Oh, why not?

 

Fabiana: Because do you think it is showing affection is saying mean words to somebody?

 

Brandon: No, teasing on the side of, you know, not bullying.

 

Fabiana: Okay, okay.

 

Brandon: Yeah, there should no bullies. Because [inaudible 00:27:55] hitting everybody.

 

Fabiana: I’m fighting against bullies. We use Jiu-Jitsu as bully fighting too, so don’t tell me you can bully somebody, teasing somebody.

 

Brandon: No, no, trust me I’m a bully.

 

Fabiana: I can be too for Daniel but – 

 

Brandon: Now you – you’re a physical specimen. I think you may have more muscle on you that I have right now. Total muscle, I mean, what kind of training takes place outside of the mat like do you look how many things need to do for diet that help you at certain techniques. I just hear you just mentioned maybe for a fight you got to cut weight. So there is weight classes in Jiu-Jitsu?

 

Fabiana: Yes, they do have weight classes. I usually eat very healthy on my daily basis but for my cardio and my conditioning, I do all on the mat. I do it speed on the mats, the drills, the techniques because I truly believe for you to get better in Jiu-Jitsu, you got to train Jiu-Jitsu. However for strength I usually do CrossFit – I usually, no, I do CrossFit and that’s how I get the strength weight – I lift weights and I get that strength for, but I do that only two times a week. And most and I train 7 days a week. So if I’m going for a tournament, I train seven days a week. Every day is roll, usually in the morning or in – and in the evening. In CrossFit I do two times a week. A more explosive and weight – for weights too.

 

Brandon: Question just slipped right there. What is number one conditioning thing that you say you do on the mat? Because I noticed myself, you know, when I was doing all these things, you know, it’s completely different from the things I normally train with. Even though I maybe training with kettle bellssomething I know that you use in CrossFit as well as for Jiu-Jitsu that, you know, I wasn’t perfectly prepared, you know, for going a few rounds in sparring. Is there a certain thin you usually do? A certain exercise or a brand of exercises. 

 

Fabiana: The one you were doing, we call it drills. We repeat, we get the muscle memory going and we repeat, repeat, repeat. Jiu-Jitsu – I believe is Jiu-Jitsu is different from working out or any other activity because you have to think. You have to do it. Send the message to your body. Do it and you have another body that you have to control. So you were with Alexa yesterday doing pass guard drills. You had to control her body as well to do your technique. 

 

Brandon: Yeah and when I was sliding her and then putting my knee to her chest and then back up and knee back down.

 

Fabiana: Yes, so it’s you telling your body what to do and you have to manipulate her body too. So we do a lot of that. We do a lot of drills. Repeat, repeat and the sparring – I usually sparring like six times – six rolling we call. Six to eight rolling [inaudible 00:31:05] sometimes. It just depends on the days on the days but anyways, we do sparing and then it’s going to be my mind, my body working against your own mind and your body. And that’s when it gets tricky, you know, you have to think ahead of the person. 

So usually that the drills, to get your muscle memory going – quick, quick thinking in the sparring that you actually going to apply that with – you’re going to apply the technique with somebody trying to apply a technique back on you basically. Both of you are trying hard to do something. Yeah.

 

Brandon: Now, when it comes to CrossFit and the weight training. Are you training for strength? Are you training for conditioning? Because I know there’s different levels, you know, for example we’re training for strengths maybe you want to lower the reps and keep the amount of – what was it? Reps times the next part. I’m butchered it right now. So for example instead of doing maybe 10 or 12, you’re only going to do five reps of the exercise -- five times and then for conditioning, you know, maybe you’re going to be doing, you know, may only 3 sets. “Sets” was the word I was looking for. 3 sets of 12 reps. So when you’re doing a CrossFit , are you training normally for strength? Are you training for the conditioning aspect? When it comes to weight.

 

Fabiana: Yeah, I was very concerned about doing CrossFit because we hear a lot of things – people getting hurt – shoulders, all that.

 

Brandon: Listen, those are just people who are just trying to jump into CrossFit. I’m sure you have great technique and you’re fine.

 

Fabiana: Yes, and I have a great coach. I only did start it because I do have a great coach. So whenever I do it I told him, “My goal is not to be a cross fitter. I don’t want to get strongest at CrossFit. I want to use the techniques for Jiu-Jitsu.” So I do not put too much weight. I do more – I work on my form, I work on the explosion of the techniques. That’s how I get my explosion and power. So I’m not so much to worry about like, “I’m going to add weights.” No. 

So whatever routine they have that’s what I do it. But my mind – my mind changes switch for Jiu-Jitsu. Let’s say burpees, I don’t do Burpees. I do sprawl. Jump box and jump in the box and think about double leg or explosive front double leg. If I’m doing Deadlift, I’m thinking about getting up of somebody with a close guard and getting up. So I’m constantly with a mindset for Jiu-Jitsu in CrossFit and I was thinking and try to elaborate thing for Jiu-Jitsu using CrossFit.

 

Brandon: Yeah, a lot of people just don’t end up training for their sport and I notice that myself yesterday, you know, I’m training for – I think a slow twitch muscle fibers, you know, for basketball – jumping, bouncing, being able to explode and use my speed in short distance and burst, so my stance might be wider and I think we went over that when we’re training. Like I just haven’t done training at all for this sport, you know, and I’m not there and prepared for but even that’s to see what the biggest problems and concerns, you know, any either elite training or even young kids, you know, when they train it’s – they have someone who is not training them properly. Whether it’s in the sport or they're training for Plyometrics or speed or strength training on the side. They are not doing something that is going to be used on the court or on the mat.

 

Fabiana: Yeah, adding for what their goal it is. Their sport it is. So I truly believe you should be good on whatever sport you are looking for and use the tools to you have around you to help you get better for soccer, for football, for Jiu-Jitsu, for Judo, whatever it is.

 

Brandon: What do you suggest to someone when they are looking for a good coach? Like what are the things that people should look for?

 

Fabiana: For CrossFit or Jiu-Jitsu?

 

Brandon: Anything, I mean, we are talking about it right now. It seems like that’s a huge problem. I see it, you know, training basketball. I’m just looking over sometimes maybe it’s in another court or someone else is doing something like it hurts, you know, like, “Oh, what are they doing?”

 

Fabiana: I think each sport have a different need. So you have to see what needs you have. There are coach – they are more aggressive. They are more yelling at you. I’m not – I don’t like that. I don’t like people telling me what to do. So it depends what you need. I hear ladies saying like, “Oh, [inaudible 00:36:04] somebody pushed me.” or guys saying like, “Yeah.” and I meet somebody that’s more a military style like – it depends what you need. 

But for Jiu-Jitsu, what I truly recommend is you look on the class. You look if there is the young person that likes competition, if there is lady on the mat, if there is an old guy that also are welcome on the class. It has to be a mix of people. There you know it’s a good school with a good instructor because if you can fit everyone, then you can be there, you know. 

Sometimes also depends on your need but sometimes if you go in the school there are only young athletic guys. It’s a more of competition style. If that’s what you need, if that’s what you want, you go for that. But there is school you can have all. You can have both, you know, you have the athletes and you have people there enjoying Jiu-Jitsu. They love the art. They use for self-defense, use for weight loss or use for depression, ADHD, whatever are the reasons you can use Jiu-Jitsu for.

 

Brandon: Yeah it was – I can definitely even say, you know, for someone who hasn’t done it. It’s a great work out.

 

Fabiana: Yes, how is your neck?

 

Brandon: I told them my neck wouldn’t be sore but my neck is a little sore, but luckily I got my Green Roads World CBD oil, some Turmeric in the tea, so I’m doing much better. 


Fabiana: Good.

 

Brandon: Besides that, you saw me. I was back in the gym working out today, no problem.

 

Fabiana: Yes, CBD there a good job.

 

Brandon: Oh, you saw those frog jumps on the mat.

 

Fabiana: You are very athletic. You have a bright future in Jiu-Jitsu.

 

Brandon: Even with all my neck and back injuries. 

 

Fabiana: Yeah, you will be fine.

 

Brandon: They told me don’t even go near a mat. Don’t even do this. [inaudible 00:38:03] push it. Mic almost off the table. Now, you’ve been in San Antonio…

 

 

Fabiana: Four years.

 

Brandon: Four years.

 

Fabiana: Four years on and off.

 

Brandon: But you weren’t here first, I mean, you were in California and...

 

Fabiana: Yes, when I come to here – 

 

Brandon: Washington?

 

Fabiana: Yes, Washington State. I came to Washington State, stayed there for 1 year teaching classes and I moved to California where I thought classes at Head Quarters. So at Head Quarters was like my internship, I would say. I learned everything I could in Jiu-Jitsu world. As a businesswoman, as an instructor I grew a lot staying at the Head Quarters at Gracie Barra Head Quarters. I grew a lot as an instructor. I learned how to teach. I learned how to analyze needs.

 

Brandon: You’re competing at these time, yeah, I think, when we talked about it in the intros like, you know, you were winning some of these medals during all that time.

 

Fabiana: And I was an athlete. So I grew as a human being, as a businesswoman, as a teacher and as an athlete. I learn how to eat better much healthier. How to workout specifically for Jiu-Jitsu and how to train for Jiu-Jitsu. Even though I was a black belt but I think my time in California made me the real deal, the real black belt. Even though I had won some tournaments. My time in California it was the time that I learned the most.

 

Brandon: Did you deal with any culture shock? I mean, I felt like I’ve dealt with a little culture shock just being in West Texas and even San Antonio when we went out and there is like – going to a bar, I was like, “It’s the place.”

 

Fabiana: From Brazil to Washington, yes, especially the weather. I remember I got here in October.

 

Brandon: It’s like 200 days of clouds up there, maybe even more almost 300. 

 

Fabiana: Yes, I got here in October and November I was cold the whole time.

 

Brandon: Did you lose your tan at all or you were still able to keep that tan?

 

Fabiana: Yeah, a little bit.

 

Brandon: Really?

 

Fabiana: I just brought flip-flops. I was like, “Let me bring flip-flops and shorts.” That’s how we are in Rio, flip-flops everywhere. So I was like, “I’m so cold. I’m so cold.” So I had to buy boots, I had to buy extra clothes, extra jackets. That was a big difference and then when I move to California was like, “Okay, this is better,” Now I can wear my flip-flops again.

 

Brandon: Was it southern California?

 

Fabiana: Yeah, Orange County.

 

Brandon: Ah, beautiful, right?

 

Fabiana: Yes, beautiful.

 

Brandon: We’ve done a bunch of shows out there. [inaudible 00:40:55] Southern California.

 

Fabiana: Newport, the lagoon and Huntington.

 

Brandon: If you can see her, she’s using her hands right now. That’s how much she enjoyed living in those places.

 

Fabiana: Yeah, beautiful. Yeah, in California I could use my flip-flops but I had to have a little jacket because it was cold still for me. And when I moved to Texas, I just fell in love. I fell in love with people, the weather, finally I could wear trousers and flip-flops and not get cold. I just love Texas. Texas is something I was – yeah.

 

Brandon: I’m excited to go to Austin. We really, really push Austin up there and said it’s the best. I hear it that from everybody. Now besides culture, was there any different like shock when it comes to like the rules of Jiu-Jitsu? When you came from, you know, Brazil to competing – there’s a Pan American, there was a US Nationals – was there any shock there?

 

Fabiana: It was shock on how we train here and how we train in Brazil. In Brazil – now it has changed. I’m talking about like nine years ago when I move to here. Like in Brazil, at my gym we were all sweaty, all smelly. Guys without shirt going around and here people are more conservative -- wearing rash guards, their uniform more clean. So that was a big shock for me like, “Oh, you guys are so clean here.” But besides that, no. 

Actually yes too because how the guys train here much stronger, more power – more physical power. And for me was I need to adapt to my training again from Brazil to here. I have to adapt to how to train and how to measure my power and use much more leverage, much more technique with those guys because – 

 

Brandon: Did you begin much more strength training once you got here?

 

Fabiana: No, I think my technique had to grow more because I couldn’t match power. So I had to use the techniques when I got here.

 

Brandon: Do you have like a signature technique like one you like favorite. I don’t know if you can say that on the microphone. I don’t want to give – 

 

Fabiana: Where did you read that?

 

Brandon: Give anything away to your opponents.

 

Fabiana: Arm bar, I love arm bars. 

 

Brandon: Is that the one that I kept messing up in the video?

 

Fabiana: Yes.

 

Brandon: You can check out in YouTube. You can watch the video of me putting Fabiana in an arm bar. 

 

Fabiana: Yes.

 

Brandon: She was struggling. A huge struggle.

 

Fabiana: Yes, I love arm bar. Even though I think chokes are more efficient because whenever you choke somebody if they pass out they can’t fight. Arm bar they still can fight with a broken arm. I love arm bars. I just see arm bars everywhere. I dream of arm bars.

 

Brandon: I know when you arm bar Daniel. Daniel being the mind he is, he is like, “I’m not tapping.”

 

Fabiana: I’m not going to tap.

 

Brandon: He’s not going to tap out. Have you broken anybody’s arm or broken a shoulder or pulled a shoulder out of its socket.

 

Fabiana: No, no, not breaking. Usually after tournaments or after we finish tournament, I can see some people with ice but not breaking. You have to have a good sportsmanship in Jiu-Jitsu because it’s up to you to break in training. Especially in training, if somebody doesn’t tap you move on, you know, but in tournaments sometimes you go a little bit further. But no, I have not break.

 

Brandon: Oh yeah, there is cash on the line, I mean, you may have to break someone’s arm. Now they’re not going to come back and compete and again and now it’s like you got the advantage.

 

Fabiana: Yeah.

 

Brandon: I get it.

 

Fabiana: Yeah, on tournaments I would, but not at the gym. We’re not training for.

 

Brandon: The gym you workout, co-owner of Gracie Barra San Antonio, have you ever train Gracie Barra? Have you met Gracie Barra --

 

Fabiana: So let me explain to you Gracie Barra. Gracie is the family name, right. Barra is a neighborhood in Brazil.

 

Brandon: Ah. That’s the one I research about [inaudible 00:45:15] .

 

Fabiana: Yes. That’s how they come up with the name. Master Carlos Gracie, they don’t want to – Master Carlos Gracie Jr., they don’t want to put his name.

 

Brandon: Is that the one who went to California, I think it was the 50s and he started the training out of his garage and started to train.

 

Fabiana: No, you see there are too many Gracie’s, Helio and Carlos. I believe Carlos had 21 kids. Helio had 19 kids.

 

Brandon: Yikes.

 

Fabiana: So you’re going to see a bunch of Gracie around, right. And most of them use their names -- Renzo Gracie, Carson Gracie, Royce Gracie. Carlos Gracie Jr., he didn’t want to use his name. He want to make it something bigger and the legacy would go on and on, you know, because he is going to die and we’re not going to use his name anymore or something like that, you know, so he wanted to use the team name, Gracie Barra. And that’s how you’re going to keep the legacy alive. 

So yes to your question, have I ever trained with a Gracie. Yes, Master Carlos Gracie at the Head Quarter, so he used to be there and watching training and leading camps, competition camps. Kayron Gracie too, his son, is also at the Head Quarters and I use to train with him a lot.

 

Brandon: Was there one that like you really looked up to before you like, “Oh, man this is my first.” Like, you know, Michael Jordan for me. If I got to meet Michael Jordan and train with Michael Jordan like, “Oh.” you know, I’ve got meet him and I got to train with him.

Fabiana: I like Roger Gracie. I saw good fight of Roger back in Brazil where he broke a guys arm, Jacare, and Jacare kept fighting but – 

 

Brandon: But Jacare is -- I think I’ve heard of that name.

 

Fabiana: Jacare is an alligator.

 

Brandon: Oh it’s a real alligator.

 

Fabiana: Yeah, but that’s his nickname.

 

Brandon: Okay.

 

Fabiana: And I like him.

 

Brandon: Does he fight in the UFC because – okay yeah.

 

Fabiana: Yes, there you go.

 

Brandon: That’s where I’ve seen him, okay.

 

Fabiana: Now he has transitioned to MMA. Yeah, I like Roger Gracie but I learned a lot from Kayron too. Kayron, he has a very good game like he works with his legs, his leverage. I like his game too.

 

Brandon: Is there any like one person – If you could train with one person, you know, whether they passed away or whether they are alive now. Who would it be?

 

Fabiana: It would be Rolls Gracie. That was the teacher of Carlos Gracie Jr., I hear very good story about him and he was a very good athlete. I think I would love to learn from him.

 

Brandon: This is the Royce Gracie who won the first UFC.

 

Fabiana: No, Rolls it’s R-O-L-L-S and Royce is R-O-Y-C-E.

 

Brandon: You got to speak that if it’s a Portuguese, you’re not just pronouncing the Portuguese right there.

 

Fabiana: We say R different. Rolls Gracie and then Royce Gracie. Yeah, so it would be Rolls Gracie.

 

Brandon: What are your thoughts on an organization like the UFC? Do you watch and do you compete in anything like that?

 

Fabiana: I’m not a big fan of punches, never been. I do watch but for me it wouldn’t work. I don’t like the idea of punches and I wouldn’t do the transition. I think you don’t get too much money for the consequence that you can do to your body, so I don’t think it’s worth it.

 

Brandon: Yeah.

 

Fabiana: So I don’t think it’s worth it.

 

Brandon: Yeah, I mean, the year or six months of training prior to a fight and then sometimes maybe six months until you recover. I mean, if you get knocked out for example, you know, that’s a serious one year recovery. You want to go and recover on a knock out and – well it’s interesting that you – what do you think about it all because with the UFC was there and you know, established, you know, as a springboard for Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu it seemed like, you know, way to demonstrate that this form of martial arts is the greatest martial arts. 

Started from the garage in California and now like, “Oh, let’s put this out there. Let’s put this on the map. We’re challenging all these people in a garage, but now we’re going to pick the biggest and a lot of these strongest guys.” And I think I forgot who founded the UFC but when they picked Royce, you know, a smaller individual who ended up just taking everybody down.

 

Fabiana: Yes.

 

Brandon: What is it about Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu that makes it the like elite martial art? Do you think it’s the elite martial art?

 

Fabiana: I think so. It’s so much – it’s a powerful martial arts. Powerful tool to – for example Royce, he would compete against people from wrestling, people from Muay Thai, people from Sumo and he would have the way of getting them down and hold controlling them. Once you’re on the ground like, “You are over.” In MMA, UFC proves that a lot. We are very grateful, I’m very grateful that it grew so much because that’s how we kind of expand the knowledge about Jiu-Jitsu. But a lot of people come to the gym because of UFC. They say, “I want to do UFC. I want to do MMA.” and like, “Okay. Let’s see what kind of UFC you want to go to.”

 

Brandon: Yeah, it is still a martial art. You still have to establish, you know, what you want your primary technique or primary art to be, you know, but at the same time like you’re talking about, use specifically want to practice Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. You enjoy Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and then remember we talked about Muay Thai. Muay Thai, you know, initiating more punches, adding that in. That’s a whole different technique that you want to add in. Could you or would you ever try to go up against somebody and just with strictly Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu?

 

Fabiana: I come on. I would and I think I would be successful. However, going back sorry to the UFC. I wouldn’t do it, MMA, but I admire a lot who does because you have to put a hell of training. A lot of training in to -- you got to train on your feet, you got to train Jiu-Jitsu, you got to train your wresting, you got to do your conditioning -- so it’s a very tough job and I admire who does. 

 

Brandon: Absolutely.

 

Fabiana: I wouldn’t do it. I have my reasons and I think it’s not worth it for me but there are people that they want to do it and they – I have friends that do the transition from Jiu-Jitsu to MMA and they are doing great. It’s just not for me.

 

Brandon: On the Brazilian side, you see a lot of women, really, really catapulting to the top right now and doing really well. I think Cyborg, I watched her she was the one of the prelim cards on the Jon Jones fight recently.

 

Fabiana: She’s amazing.

 

Brandon: The woman who she was fighting didn’t even look like, you know, they just picked her up from the middle of nowhere and said, “Hey, you’re going to fight Cyborg.” Cyborg was just toying with her.

 

Fabiana: And Cyborg is a brown belt in Jiu-Jitsu, has very ground game. 

 

Brandon: She didn’t even took her to the ground, though. I mean, she was hitting her with punches.

 

Fabiana: And her main sport is the Muay Thai, they shoot box from Brazil but the Muay Thai and yeah, but she’s amazing, she’s a beast. But there are other girls, big names in Jiu-Jitsu that have transitioned to MMA and they are doing a good job too.

 

Brandon: Yeah, I mean, I love watching Jon Jones, unfortunate they say he is micro dosing with the steroids or he was taking steroid like in general all in all but, “Oh, man.” That leg kick he landed against Daniel Cormier, did you see that?

 

Fabiana: Yes. Yeah, he is good. I like him too.

 

Brandon: Just like a long, tall individual. He was like 6ft 2” - 6ft 3”, you know, just under 200 pounds.

 

Fabiana: Yeah, a monster.

 

Brandon: Oh, a monster I’m glad you finally.

 

Fabiana: He actually trains at Gracie Barra by the way, Jon Jones in New Mexico. His instructor is Roberto Tussa Alencar. We have another black belt from New Mexico, Rafael Barata that trains Holly Holm and – 

 

Brandon: Holy Holm, yeah, yeah, she’s a good boxer.

 

Fabiana: Yes, yeah, but her ground is good too.

 

Brandon: She is getting better.

 

Fabiana: So many, many people train with Gracie Barra Jiu-Jitsu too.

 

Brandon: It’s interesting when I’ve watched all of these things – the UFC were talking about is the leg kicks. Those extra leg kicks. Just like, you know, slowly wearing and wearing someone down.

 

Fabiana: Precise.

 

Brandon: Yeah, and it’s just like, “Okay, it’s something I can.” If you think about like you know old school fighting video game and there’s like a whole red bar of how much power you have and if I could take away a little bit each time. I think that’s what – in the second fight Conor McGregor vs Nate Diaz, that’s the thing that helped him the most. I mean, Nate Diaz was limping on that leg by the third round and it’s just, “Oh, it’s just something so simple. It’s a strategy.” But there’s no kicking involved in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. 

 

Fabiana: No, no kicks, no punches. We do covers the self-defense so we add a little punch but everything to get closer to the person and take the person down and control the person to the ground. We’ve dodged the punch and go into the ground and that’s a lot of what people that transition from Jiu-Jitsu to MMA are doing. They are getting the double leg, they are getting the clinch and throwing the person to the ground and manage the fight on the ground.

 

Brandon: Now, you’ve been doing this like 20 years almost now right.

 

Fabiana: Almost.

 

Brandon: Almost 20 years. Now, you know, I remember you even more when we were training like you are emphasizing in other technique, the rules, I think Alexa wrapped around my body and you’re just yelling at me, “Don’t throw her down. Do not slam her.” And I was compose still as much as you didn’t think I was. I’m not going to that. I heard you. But do you see like any fundamentals and techniques like being tainted with the saturation of the market, you know, you have the UFC and now you have these trainers and maybe they’re not Gracie Barra. You know, have trainers everywhere and do you see like people are just the techniques even better now because there’s so many great teachers out here or is they’re like a lot of technique like, “Oh, yeah.” It’s hard to watch.

 

Fabiana: It depends on what you look at. If you look on the sport side, there are a lot of techniques that it holds down the pure of Jiu-Jitsu – they’re attacking it, they’re going forward looking for a submission because people are looking more for the points, holding the person down, getting the finish and the win. So we always say the new Jiu-Jitsu and the old Jiu-Jitsu. The old Jiu-Jitsu people would take down and try to submit. I like that one better -- when you are looking for submissions, when you’re attacking and looking for the finish. 

So yes and no. We’re improving a lot on techniques but there are couple techniques that it makes boring the sport like the 50/50 guard or Berimbolo which I don’t like. But it makes the sport not so pleasure to see. I like when we were going for the kill, you know, “let’s go, let’s take that person down and hold them to the ground then choke them out.” I like that Jiu-Jitsu better.

 

Brandon: In basketball, the game seems to always be changing. Like in the NBA, they’ll change the rules whether it’s there’s illegal defense. So you can’t be inside the paint right under the basket if you’re not guarding someone who has the ball. And a lot of things for example, like what’s we just talked about to amplify the amount of offense. 

We want more points, people want to come they want to see more points, the ball go in the basket, people are excited. The game is just flowing, it’s going up and down more. Now, in Jiu-Jitsu does the game change that way? There’s new styles and new techniques like someone could come out with a brand new move here like – 

 

Fabiana: Yes.

 

Brandon: “Woah, why did he do that? How does she do that.”

 

Fabiana: Yes, they are changing a lot to make more dynamic, the fight. For example the 50/50 I’m talking about. Now you cannot keep longer on that position for a long time. You will get punishment. 

 

Brandon: A foul.

 

Fabiana: Foul, yeah, you get a foul for that. So they are trying to make the game more dynamic for people watching not staying so much on the ground. Yeah, every now and then they have to change the rules and take some techniques that might be more damage for athlete, they take that out. For example heel hook we cannot do heel hook in a Jiu-Jitsu tournament because we can hurt your knee, we can hurt your ankle and that’s a long recovery. So yes, we always have to change the rules and get a better sport for everyone.

 

Brandon: How is the – because of the popularity, who do you – what kind of demographic of people do you see coming in the gym more -- people coming in for weight loss or people coming in for self-defense, people coming in because they see it on TV and they want to compete or they want to train like these people compete. What’s the primary like people that come in?

 

Fabiana: It’s funny that – it’s very big abroad but it’s funny that nobody comes to the gym to say I will be a world champion. Nobody comes in the gym and say, “I want to compete.” Not nobody but the percentage it’s very low. And once they come, usually a friend told them or a mother told them to put the kids. So they get the other benefits for Jiu-Jitsu for example for kids, kids with ADHD, kids with that has higher active – it’s a great sport to help them calm down.

 

Brandon: Oh the focus, the discipline, it’s something huge. I mean, I think, watching even the young kids class and I’ve worked with young kids with basketball. It’s, you know, they don’t get this opportunity to run around. They have all these energy. They are all little monkeys just even for them to throw their bodies in awkward weird positions that, you know, we tell them to sit at a desk and a chair with their legs at 90 degrees all day and it’s just terrible for their hips and I’m just – now you haven’t do like a bear crawl, you know, butt up in the air and hands and feet on the floor. It’s sad when you can’t see some kids do that. 

 

Fabiana: Yeah.

 

Brandon: You know, it’s like, “Oh, we were crawling like that for 200,000 years or after since 200,000 years ago, I mean, we’ve been doing this and all of a sudden we’re going to tell our bodies to not to do this.” Like even after we get out of this chair right now, I’m going to get a good, good deep squat stretch right after this.

 

Fabiana: So a lot of people also – adults for come for stress relief after work, they want to stress relieve. A lot of ladies come for the self-defense. Everyone comes for the fitness, for the weight loss I suspect. And then they start to fall in love with – they start to feel confident about going for tournaments, going for competition. So most people doesn’t come in to the gym saying, “I want to be a world champ.” No. 

They come in to find something to relieve the stress, something to keep them active, something to connect them with their spouses or their kids and then they say, “Oh, I can do this. I can do that competition thing.” And then they start to look for the tournaments and other stuff.

 

Brandon: Now how was your transformation going from competitor to coach? I know you noticed you’ve become much more of a coach. Not be able to compete as much. Especially you couldn’t go – able to go to Japan but do you enjoy it as much as competing?

 

Fabiana: I love coaching. I fulfill my happiness the same way – actually not the same way but probably more seeing one student that came into me, they didn’t know anything. They didn’t know how to fall. They didn’t know how to do a takedown and then, they go to a tournament and win that’s like it’s a happiness coming from my heart. 

More than myself win because I know myself. I talk to myself when that’s my challenge that’s me and me but when I see somebody that accomplish so much through Jiu-Jitsu and I could witness that. It’s a good – amazing feeling. I love competition but I think when I compete it’s me and myself. Myself talking on my mind and telling what to do, what do I have to do. Myself getting disciplined. 

I like the aspect of the discipline but when you see somebody growing through Jiu-Jitsu, it’s amazing feeling. That be happy with others happiness, it’s totally true. I get so happy when I see a student that say, “Oh, I lost 30 pounds.” or “I’m not taking more 2-3 meds instead I use to take.” or “Now, I want to do that tournament.” They do the first tournament and“When can I sign up for the next one?” It’s so good. It’s very rewarding job if we should call job.

 

Brandon: Do you have a favorite coaching technique? Is there something that you do that’s different? And then when you see other coaches when you watch them is it, you know, do you have more compassion? Do you communicate more? Do you lecture clients or people you trained, you’ll give them a little more freedom to see what they're doing wrong without telling them what they're doing wrong.

 

Fabiana: My students say that I have a lot of patience. I’m very patient person. So I think that’s something that I – I would say difference…

 

Brandon: Differentiate?

 

Fabiana: Yes, myself from others. Thank you.

 

Brandon: I just work here welcome On The Bus.

 

Fabiana: Yeah, I think the patience. I’m very passionate. Every time I go to a tournament, I lose my voice because I’m there with them. I know they can do it. I know they are capable of. So I lose my voice easily because I’m there. I’m with them on the mat. So I think the passion – the compassion that you said, I understand that most people – when I say like move your hip. They don’t know – they don’t know yet. So I’m compassionate in trying to teach them, trying to break it down to them all those techniques. So the patience, I think, I’m very patient. That’s what my students would say.

 

Brandon: As a coach myself you got to have patience and if you don’t have the patience and you’re not able to look within to have the where with all. Well I’m the coach if this player, this competitor doesn’t know what to do or isn’t understanding, I have to be a better person. I have to be a better coach in order to communicate with them, so they know what to do. They are here to train with me. You know, yelling at them, pulling my hair out, stomping the ground isn’t going to necessarily make them, you know.

 

Fabiana: And it’s such a growth, you grow so much teaching somebody and you see the results. You grow every time – every person that comes in to the gym they're teaching you something. They are teaching you how to be a better coach because each person is different and let’s say you have hundred student, you havea hundred different minds. You have to help them discover themselves, get safe on the map and I use to say let them fly after. You teach them how to crawl, you teach them how to walk and then later on just let them fly and be the better, the best Jiu-Jitsu practitioner. 

 

Brandon: Are you able to personalize any of the trainings, you know, maybe you don’t, you know, you have a class but still it’s like, “Okay, I have Paul over there and I know what Paul does best and I know how to get the most of Paul. I know where is going to, you know, be at his best and I’m going to put him in situation.” But you also know where Paul is not at his best too. You know what his weak points are, whether that’s going up against someone who he use to have hard time with or for example in basketball like, “Oh, I know that we’re going to work on this drill today.” Are you able to do that in your training to personalize it a little bit?

 

Fabiana: Yes, uh-huh, I have some people that I know more less how they work. Like some people they need to read, some people they need to see it to learn, some people need to do it over and over. Go there and do over and over and over and over. So I try to learn how they learn and help them with that. Then I said, “Look, watch this video here going to open up your mind or with this book or do this at home watching TV you can do this – do this technique going to help you.” And it’s working.

 

Brandon: Is there anything that you do personally? That helps you get to that good mindset so you’re able to – You know, is it mantras? Is it writing your goals down? is it – what is it? Is there certain particular thing that, you know, helps you help your clients even better? Yeah, your success is able to be passed on and generates, you know, even more success for people under you.

 

Fabiana: I think in my mind being compassionate about them, my mind. I have a good mindset like I have a little switch on my mind that I always do it like, “Hey, come on. calm down, breathe and see the whole picture and see what you can do. What can you do to help the person grow.” I do write my goals but – so my personal goals but that’s for myself.

 

Brandon: Now, last thing. Class yesterday, Daniel and I we joined the adult class and we got to sit – not just sit in, we get to participate. You gave us a few basics just in one class. I try to demand more out of you but you won’t listen, “This is all you get, this is all we can go over in one day.” How did we do? I know Daniel got his hip and back pain but I mean, I thought he did well. You know, for someone who complains about a lot though, he did great. What about me? How did I do?

 

Fabiana: Uh-oh, remember I’m very patient, so – 

 

Brandon: No, listen, I want the critic tell me what I got to work on?

 

Fabiana: No, you’re very – you definitely have to work on not doing so much power. Jiu-Jitsu is not power all the time. There is a time you work – you have to add that power on but when the beginning you got to work on your techniques, learn how to do – and in one day you’re not going to learn everything, so you use what you have which is the power but definitely work on your power not to do so much power. You have a great speed.

 

Brandon: I love that one move where you put – you step to the side, you put your knee down, the outside knee down first. That’s what I was going for every time. I’m going to grab her leg and throw her down. I mean, I was like see this is my move.

 

Fabiana: Single leg.

 

Brandon: Yes, we practiced it and the repetitions in the beginning, I like that one.

 

Fabiana: Your speed is very good but yeah, definitely work on how to calm down, how to breathe. If you waste so much energy you’re done. Jiu-Jitsu have to waste – you have to use the minimal amount of energy to apply your techniques. So if you waste the energy then your breathing is not going to right then somebody catches you.

 

Brandon: I can definitely say I wasn’t like going skill wise, I was just like, “Okay, I’m going to give as much as I can, get it done, get my point and I’m good let me step off the mat.”

 

Fabiana: And Alexa just wait.

 

Brandon: Yeah.

 

Fabiana: She just waited and – 

 

Brandon: Tactically, yeah, I could tell too. I mean, when I was looking back in photos and videos from yesterday. 

 

Fabiana: And that’s the beauty of Jiu-Jitsu. You is a man – stronger than Alexa, I would say. Probably heavier and she is 125 pounds and she controlled you. So that’s the beauty. That’s what Master Carlos and Helio try to do. Know somebody that’s very small, get control that bigger person. That’s the self-defense aspect. If somebody tried to attack Alexa on the street, I feel sorry for the guy. Unless he has a gun, a knife or something like that but her Jiu-Jitsu is great and she can defend herself if a guy like you stronger, bigger try to attack her, you know, that’s the beauty of it.


Brandon: I just because I only had one class.

 

Fabiana: Okay.

 

Brandon: Give me two more classes.

 

Fabiana: Oh, I’m going to tell that to her.

 

Brandon: You tell her that. I’m coming back. I’m going to take her down. Now before we go, anything you want to leave any of our bus guest with. I mean, messages, anything that about motivation. Things that, you know, positive information you want to pass on to them please. Take the floor.

 

Fabiana: I just want to tell you guys to keep on going. Sometimes we don’t know where we are going but we got to just keep on going and the destination will happen and enjoy the process. I try to translate a lot of things from Jiu-Jitsu to life. Sometimes you’re being smashed, you know, you’re being like – somebody on top of you is smashing, crushing you down. You got to breathe, you got to relax and see the opportunity, see the ways out and then you’re going to figure out how to get out that way. 

So you guys have a beautiful project. You guys are putting your heart, passion and anything you do with passion it’s good – there is no other way you’re going to end up being successful if you’re passionate about it, you’re successful about it. And thank you, thank you for the time, thank you for this amazing two days. I’m learning a lot from you guys and yeah, for the people out there try Jiu-Jitsu class. Sometimes you say, “I don’t like it.” But you got to try it first and then you decide if you like it or not.

 

Brandon: And where can people find you? First before I even say that, that was perfect. Relating sports to life, beautiful. Again go ahead with plugging your way. Where can people find you? Where can they connect with you? Where can they learn more about you? Where can they even message you or talk with you?

 

Fabiana: My home base is Gracie Barra San Antonio. I teach at Gracie Barra San Antonio, but you guys can find me on Facebook, Instagram. Whatever question you have, there is no question that it’s unnecessary. If you have a question, ask and I will be able to help you, to guide you, maybe you’re looking – you are thinking about training, you are thinking about studying your Jiu-Jitsu path. Just do it, you know, in life sometimes we have to just do it. And you guys can find me online or Gracie Barra San Antonio gbsanantonio.com too.

 

Brandon: Thank you so much, again and we will have all that information in the show notes from where you can connect with her, where you can find out where she’s going to be competing and where the best place is to watch some of her videos on YouTube. You can even watch some of the videos that we took part in her class yesterday. There’s going to be a few and that will be On The Bus Podcast’s page on YouTube and we’re going to sign out from here.

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