*Due to editorial limitations, parts of this interview may have been abbreviated.
Black Belt+: You inspired so many, who or what inspired you?
Ricardo: I started Judo when I was four years old. I passed through taekwondo, boxing and started doing Jiu-Jitsu when I was 15. The uncle of my first girlfriend was my biggest inspiration to start. He was a Carlson Gracie black belt, and invited me to visit Carlson’s school, and I never stopped after that.
Black Belt+:Black Belt+ was started to help students outside the dojo, what are your expert tips on training solo or remotely?
Ricardo: We live in the era of distance learning, knowledge was never so accessible to all as it is today. I really wish that it was like this in my time! The ability to receive a martial arts education is a blessing for the curious mind.
Black Belt+: Oftentimes in our training we hit a wall, what’s your advice for students who lack motivation or want to quit?
Ricardo: Inspiration and motivation is not always going to be there. If you want to succeed in anything you count on discipline, that’s a fact. The key to success is to consistently show up.
Black Belt+: Traditionally many martial artists start with one style, when do you recommend the best time to branch out and learn other styles?
Ricardo: Anytime you feel it’s important to expand your knowledge, do it. Learning is a continuous act and it’s never enough. Keep learning online.
Black Belt+: What are some changes or developments in your art over the years?
Ricardo: There are many changes in style and in rules for competition but the essence of BJJ is to adapt and evolve, keeping an open mind is essential to be up to date on the sport.
Black Belt+: Today, what is the emphasis of your teaching?
Ricardo: Jiu Jitsu is a lifestyle. It involves culture (food, music, art etc.), involves a philosophy of treating people the way you want to be treated, making them fell welcome, to help people heal physically and mentally. I’ve been through all the cycles in my sport, as an athlete, coach for high performance, school owner, sport administrator, and in the end my emphasis is about helping others and passing on the knowledge.
Black Belt+: What motivates you to stay passionate about your art?
Ricardo: Love and discipline. I know my “why”!
- 5 Lessons That BJJ Can Teach You About Life ›
- Five Tips for Competing in BJJ ›
- Is BJJ the Most Important Martial Art for MMA? ›