From fashion model to BJJ champion, meet Monique Elias

1. Hi Monique, can you please present yourself to the Eastern Europe BJJ community?

Monique winning the Pan Ams 2012

My name is Monique Medeiros Elias, 22 years old and Blue Belt.
I train with Mario Reis at Alliance Porto Alegre, in
Porto Alegre City (Rio Grande do Sul state), Brazil.
As a White Belt i was CBJJ (IBJJF) and CBJJE Light Weight World Champion, South American Champion (CBJJ/IBJJF), amongst other titles.As a Blue Belt i was Abu Dhabi World Pro Absolute Division champion (-64k) in Abu Dhabi, CBJJE World Champion (Light weight/absolute division), South American Champion ( Light weight, CBJJ/IBJJF), Pan American Champion (Light weight/Absolute Division CBJJ/IBJJF) and State Champion (FGJJ).

Mario and Monique

2. How did you discover Jiu-Jitsu ?
Mario and me became friends talking in a square garden near our houses. A common friend told
me Mario was a BJJ World Champion. We started talking about Jiu-Jitsu and he explained to me what it was. I got interested and took and experimental class with him. I never left the mat since then.

3. How do you compare modeling/ fashion indsutry and Jiu-Jitsu? (are there any similarities, diffrences) and do you miss modeling?

Fashion industry is so hard on bodytypes, weight and measures but in Jiu-Jitsu we have to control
our weight as well. Jiu-Jitsu is fun all the time, as a model i felt stressed for expending my weekends
in auditions, photo shootings or TV footage. In other hand, expending my weekends training or fighting it
is a synonymous of pure fun! The only thing i miss about modeling is to do my nails, my hair, taking care of my skin… but i know those sacrifices must be made to be a champion.

4. How did your Pan competition go? Please guide us through your matches.

Pan American Championship was an extreme high level Jiu-Jitsu competition. It took me 4 fights (4×0…)
till the final, where i closed up the category with my colegue Karna Nelson. In the Absolute Division i took
4 fights (W.O., 2×0, 0x0, submission) and in the last match i submited my opponent with and straight foot lock.The hardest fight was the semi-final, where my opponent was a lot heavyer then me. I worked on my guard attacking omoplatas and triangle chokes without submiting. The fight ended up 0x0, the judge called the victory on me and i went to the final.

5. Congratulations on your engagement. What does Mario Reis represent to you from a jiu-jitsu point of view?

Mario represents a big change in my life. He changed the way i have fun, the way i talk, the way i deal with people… that experimental class was fundamental so i fell in love with Jiu-Jitsu. The way he conducts my training, my teachings, the way he conducted my first “rola (how we call a Jiu-Jitsu fight in Brazil)” and guided me through my first tournament and my first victory, as well as my first loss. To live with Mario is to live Jiu-Jitsu 24 hoursa day! The way he teaches me the techniques, the reason why he eats what he eats, those things only make my love for him grow stronger and stronger. I feel accomplished for marrying a person who is much more then the man i love, he is also someone to admire and my Master in life!

6. What are your competition plans for 2012?

My plans for 2012 are to fight the Brazilian Championship (CBJJ), World Championship (IBJJF/CBJJE), Rio International
Open (IBJJF) and then take a vacation, because i’m marrying in october and i want to plan everything! But never forgetting
about my 4 hours of daily training, of course!

7. Monique Thank you for your time, all the best! OSSS!

Thank you very much! OSSSS!