1. Hi Yuri, can you please introduce yourself to the Eastern European BJJ community?
Hi guys, first of all thanks for the opportunity, I am a BJJ black belt and a BJJ Athlete, all i do in my life is training and dedicate myself to this martial art and sport in which I became 4 times World Champion, 4 times European champion, World no gi champ, Brazilian National champ, etc…
2. Please tell us about how you started in Bjj and how you have now become a professional bjj player.
My first experience in BJJ was around 6, 7 years old my dad used to train bjj and back then he was already a purple belt he used to show me Rickson Gracie and Royce Gracie fights, and i used to train with him and his friends but nothing serious. When i turned 10 years old in school i had a trouble with a guy and I used to always be a very aggressive kid but this time the guy beat me up badly (lol) and I asked my dad to put me in BJJ, he didn’t know why I decided to start training but he made it and i went to a BJJ school not so far from my home. The first month all i was thinking about was about the kid
in my school ”man i am going to beat this guy up”, after a while I found myself going to the academy earlier than any other kid and leaving after everyone, and I forgot completely about the boy that had given me a hard time, and i was 100% focused in becoming not just a champion but an icon in the sport. Since 11 years old i have been trying to make it happen, and now I am thankful to that guy that beat me up in school because he made me find out one the most important things of my life (laughs)!
3. We understand that you have link with Eastern European BJJ, please tell us about that.
I know Bojan Mirkovic (Fabricio Werdum black belt, from Croatia) since a long time and he is one of my best friends that I made through Jiu-jitsu. I met him on 2004 I believe, it was in hunter gym under the late Mauricao Behring. I was a kid then, an orange belt and Bojan had a white belt and back there we spoke in some dialect that we created (laughs). Back then he didn’t know any Portuguese and i had no idea how to speak English or Croatian (still can’t understand Croatian at all), but Bojan has always been a great friend and great person and have taught a lot about life. He is doing an awesome job with his team and i can certainty say he is one of the best black belts in the whole Europe, he knows a lot and is helping a lot with jiu-jitsu development in Croatia. Every time i go there the guys surprise me. They are doing good and soon they will show their power at the international competitions.
4. Yuri can you describe your training routine when you train for a competition? And also when you don’t have a competition.
My day during a competition training camp is tough, and I’m going tomorrow back to California, where i have my competition training with my friends Lucas Leite, Marco Sharpei, Joao Assis, Buchecha and many others… I train with these beasts every day from 12:00 to 14:00 and then at 6 pm I have a lighter training with students where i can try new positions and stuff in Lancaster at Kemos fight factory, and 21:00 i do conditioning, weight lifting, running, etc… My training day when i am not competing is not as hard I try to focus on learning more and focus on learning more techniques and new moves, I kind of like open my mind more and don’t go as hard as when i am getting ready for the Worlds for example.
5. How about your diet during competition season? What do you eat, how often?
I always try to eat clean when I am training hard, avoid sweets, soda, and things that are not healthy for our body, I don’t hold myself to some specific diet, i just try to eat healthy and clean, veggies, steak, fish, rice beans just normal stuff, and of course it is really important for an athlete to use supplements as protein shakes and vitamins that help your body. It’s very important for an athlete to eat well.
6. What are your plans for 2012 now that you’re a black belt?
2012 I want nothing less than to go for everything that i can win, always looking for the submission, but of course this year my opponents will be tougher and way more experienced. I feel ready and feel like I’m going to do good because I know that I want it so much, and much more than anybody in my brackets, I believe a lot in my jiu-jitsu and in my training. I have a world championship bracket every day of training with my partners you can check everyone I’m training with is high level, so that helps a lot in terms of confidence.
7.Thank you Yuri for letting us know you a bit better. We wish you all the success in 2012!
Thank you for the opportunity to be on your website. It’s a pleasure being invited for an interview from you guys, Osssssss