Posts in Category: Academia

Everything in life is a matter of perspective 

Are you looking from the correct one?

As I have mentioned before, I often answer all kind of questions in my social medias, crazy questions, funny, silly, serious, BJJ and non BJJ related. 

I enjoy answering, even if take me a bit longer than I wish for to do so, but I try to answer all of them, many times I can take lessons from it and here I have a perfect example, a friend from US, purple belt, wrote me saying he felt like he was stagnated, he felt his Jiu Jitsu was not progressing for a while. I said that from my experience this is part of the process, I can even dare to say that to move forward, many times you will take a step or two back before.

Later on this same friend wrote me saying he was embarrassed by his terrible performance while training with a visitor, but reading his description of what happened, I realized that he was seeing the facts from a terrible perspective, check out our conversation and tell me with you agree with what I told him:

I rolled with a new guy... a white belt whos an MMA fighter and it was a 8-10 minute scramble... i'm 45 he's 22... i was constantly trying to keep up with him... i did finally take his back and slide choke him but I walked out embarrassed because i'm a "higher" belt and didnt want my professor to look bad because that kid bested me... I feel like... i want to be a source of pride for my professor and my presence and actions on the mat directly reflect him... and I walk out not living up to the quality that represents my professor... u know? My performance reflects back on him... and its hard... i take representing my school seriously...

HERE is what I wrote him back:

So you are saying that you at 45, was able to roll with a 22 years old MMA fighter, survive for 8-10 minutes, at some point got his back and choke him and you think you embarrassed someone?

HIS answer to my other perspective:

jesus... i didn't think like that... it just seemed like such a struggle to get there.. thank you sir...

I think all of us have the same problems, often we see things from a wrong perspective and if no one get you back in track or show you the best perspective of it, can lead to depression, discouragement and taking bad decisions. To make even harder, some times we only hear or see this better perspective if someone from a different friendship circle or family tells us. So next time you are having a hard time, think about this, talk with different people and I'm sure you will realize it's not as bad as it seens. Hardly ever is. 

As a teacher, I can say I will never feel a student have let me down if he is trying his best. As I always say, the ultimate goal should be to be come the best you can be! Felipe Costa

Posted by Felipe Costa Jan 26, 2014 Categories: Academia BJJ Felipe Costa Jiu Jitsu

The history of the Gracie Jiu-Jitsu Belt System 

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu belts

Quem sabe a origem das faixas coloridas no Jiu-Jitsu? E da faixa-preta?
O sistema original de graduação dos irmãos Gracie era baseado apenas em duas cores - a branca, para alunos, e a azul escura, para professores. As faixas não eram indicativas de capacitação técnica e sim de capacidade de ENSINO. Todos os alunos usavam a faixa BRANCA. Conforme iam seguindo no curso de professores, caso assim o desejassem, iriam trocando a faixa, mas isso só a partir de 1967.
Olhe a explicação completa interessantíssima (em inglês) dada pelo Pedro Valente.

Professor Pedro Valente on the history of the Gracie Jiu-Jitsu Belt System and the method currently used at Valente Brothers. 
Valente Brothers acknowledges and respects the fact that today, Jiu-Jitsu federations and many academies utilize different systems both for adult and youth students.

online training program

Dec 23, 2013 Categories: Academia BJJ Jiu Jitsu Video BJJ

5 basic rules of cross training for Jiu-Jitsu 

Does your teacher let you visit other academies?


RESPECT, ETHICS, NO SECRETS, DISCIPLINE, and FRIENDSHIP—those are the five basic principles of   Brasa black belt Felipe Costa’s new, cutting-edge-training team sessions created for anyone from any team, but they have to meet one requirement. “We are uniting people from different teams to come train,” Felipe says, “But we all have one thing in common: we’re all under 160 pounds (73kgs).
Felipe got the idea for these training sessions because he’s always found it difficult to put together a group of higher belts who are light, like to train hard, and want to compete. “Whenever I get the chance to talk to my opponents at various competitions, we light guys always agree about how hard it is to only train with heavier training partners at our academies,” Felipe says, “So, I thought why not bring people together who share the same passion, but just happen to be from different teams? We can help each other get better. In the end, that’s what we all want, right?”
Jiu-Jitsu practitioners from Brasa, De La Riva Team, Soul Fighters, GFTeam, Nova Geracão, Carlson Gracie, Gracie Humaitá, and Brazilian Fight, to name a few, all attend Felipe’s training sessions. “We have about 40 people who come to train three times a week,” he says, “This is something unique to the world, so many top fighters under 73kgs from all over come to train. Cross-training between teams was something unimaginable when I started back in 1991, but things have changed and we all need to adapt. So, everyone is welcome, as long as we think alike.”

I thought why not bring people together who share the same passion, but just happen to be from different teams? We can help each other get better. In the end, that’s what we all want, right?

Thinking alike includes the five basic training principles. “Despite your rank or team, once you join our training team everyone is the same,” Felipe says, “It’s like making a new team, at least while inside the mats. No one is allowed to make fun of or put down another training partner. That’s respect. Everyone who comes to train is loyal to his own team, but also loyal to the training partners who are giving their best to help each other. So, to show ethics, we do not comment about our training to our teammates from our original team.”
Felipe also says they don’t hide or hold back techniques. There are no secrets on the mats. “We just want to get better, so the best way to do that is to share our knowledge,” he says. As far as discipline goes, everyone must arrive on time and only miss training in the case of something extreme. “It’s our way to show respect for our training partners’ time and effort to be there,” he says, “And lastly, without trust, there is no improvement. Despite our team flag, we are friends and there is no need to oppose each other. This is the biggest lesson we can teach the world.”

"...without trust, there is no improvement. Despite our team flag, we are friends and there is no need to oppose each other. This is the biggest lesson we can teach the world.”

Felipe leads the training sessions, but follows the recommendations of physical fitness trainer Itallo Vilardo. “He’s the best BJJ trainer I have ever had,” Felipe says, “We are lucky to have him leading us through the training. The results are amazing.”
So far, Felipe has enjoyed much success with his “little guy” training sessions. “I spoke to Ricardo de la Riva about the idea of this training, and he was the first one to say we could use the space in his academy to do it,” Felipe says, “He also joined us and gave us the honor of getting to roll with him a little. He deserves all the good things people say about him. He is a legend in the sport and we are all so honored to have the chance to be friends with him and have him roll with us and teach us in each session.”
 Caio Terra’s way
Felipe says, although this type of cross-training has not been accepted in the past, he and another famous small fighter , Caio Terra, are good friends and have trained together since Caio was a white belt. “The fact that Caio enters the open weight and gets great results is amazing and living proof that technique can overcome strength,” Felipe says, “He is no doubt the best rooster today. When Caio was still living in Rio, he used to invite people from different academies to train with him at his house, where he had mats laid out. I was often there and we helped each other get ready for many competitions. With all the traveling I do throughout the year, visiting many academies all over the world that defend different flags, I have learned that it doesn’t matter if someone fights for a different team than yours. In the end, if someone does BJJ, he shares the same passion as me, but he just happens to be on a different team. So what stops us from being friends and training together? The politics from the old generations aren’t holding up anymore; this new generation is stepping up and changing this.”
Felipe says his training is really making a difference in the life of small fighters because little guys have some major challenges they have to overcome as Jiu-Jitsu fighters. “The truth is the small guys suffer!” Felipe says, “But I think everyone agrees that the small guys who don’t give up usually become the most or close to the most technical guys in the academy. If I had to give advice to a new small Jiu-Jitsu guy today, I’d tell him to first learn how to defend himself, learn how to avoid injuries, understand the limits of your body, and then, once you pass that phase, you will be very good at the art!”