Ahead of his big UFC comeback fight with Nick Diaz on January 31st 2015, the former UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva recently received the third degree on his black belt from his Jiu-Jitsu master Rodrigo Minotauro Nogueira.
Anderson’s Jiu-Jitsu story started at an early age in Brazil. His family was unable to afford expensive lessons in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu early on.
“When I started out, Jiu-Jitsu was really an elite thing in Brazil, and there was some prejudice towards poorer kids, so I had to learn things on my own,” he told Fight! Magazine. “Some of my neighbors started doing Jiu-Jitsu, so I started watching it, and then started rolling with them. It wasn’t organized training, but it was better than nothing.”
Despite this, Silva’s supportive family did find the money to pay for Tae Kwon Do lessons (age 12). Silva then moved onto Capoeira before settling on Muay Thai by the age of 16.
Silva joined the Chute Box Academy. While there he developed a reasonable ground game. After he encountered some problems with Chute Boxe and with Pride, Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira offered Anderson the possibility to train with him.
Nogueira improved Anderson’s ground game and promoted him to BJJ black belt in 2005. Nogueira follows the Gracie Lineage through Carlson Gracie, like Murilo Bustamante and the Brazilian Top Team.
Nogueira has this to say to Tatame about the promotion and the fact that Anderson was present in his academy in Rio De Janeiro:
“Promotion is one of the most important moments for us and for students. It is time that all the effort and sweat is rewarded. So I must always be present in the ranks of our academies. The presence of Anderson (Silva) was also very important, as he is one of the biggest idols of world sport and a great example for everyone. Anderson is a very great incentive for our students, especially in this career re-birth he’s having after that serious injury. His recovery is a great lesson of life and willpower for all of us.”
Check out this video of Anderson (light) rolling in the Gi with Iam Behring: