Interview with Braulio Estima !!

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How long did it take you to progress to each belt level?

from white to blue 10 months

blue to purple 2 years 4 months

purple to brown 2 years 8 months

brown to black 1 year 5 months

Do you adhere to any specific nutritional plan? Do you use supplements?

When I’m training I try to eat healthy, no fat or fried food no high sugar and I do use supplements, vitamins, proteins oils (omega 3 6 and 9)) flex seed, joint supplements (msm, glucosamine)

How important is the mental aspect in jiu-jitsu, and how do you prepare mentally?

It’s very important, one of the most important ones. If you step on the mat thinking you can loose its a big step backwards in the fight. I do a lot of drills and try a lot of techniques on training. That makes me feel confident and sharp therefore gives me a mental strength that allows me to apply the movements in the match.

Do you prepare differently for specific competitions or opponents?

For sure. I always come with something new under my sleeves. We need to have something to get the opponent in a trap. Nowadays everyone has access to our old fights that’s why I try to innovate all the time.

How did your training for ADCC 2009 look like?

Very intense on the physical part and technically, I focused a lot on sweeps, arm triangle and inverted triangles….

How do you keep things from stagnating or getting boring? How do you keep yourself motivated?

I’m very addicted to BJJ, so always if I can I train, even on my holidays or breaks (laughs). My goal is to get as good as I can be according to my own limits. I’m always adjusting little things in my games. I have too many holes to fix. I never get bored. When you start to understand how to play the chess game, you can always challenge yourself in different ways to keep you motivated.

What do you do apart from jiu-jitsu to keep yourself balanced?

I like to spend time with my family and friends, even though it’s been very tough as I’ve been doing lots of seminars. I like to do outdoor stuff, like football or surfing…..

How do you keep your creativity fresh? How do you keep coming up with new jiu-jitsu techniques?

Most of the time by trying out things. Different options always appear when I understand the concept of my game. I try to apply the same concept in different situations and it works. BJJ is easy you just need to understand yourself, your game and spread around different areas… everyone develops their own BJJ you just need to get to know your own game.

Do you have any advice for people who are in a situation where they don’t have training partners who are better than them to push them and challenge them? What can they do to improve?

This is a good question since everyone thinks as I’m Brazilian, that I have been training with better guys than me all the time….. Well when I started BJJ my instructor was a blue belt and I didn’t have a chance to train with black belts until I was brown belt. The closest black belt from my city was 3 hours away by airplane… yes… so I have to train only with lower level guys than me… and I found that I if was going to train thinking to smash everyone I wasn’t learning much, but training clever and trying out things, ignoring my pride or ego made me improve like crazy. Specific training was the best thing ever for my improvements. Plus putting myself in bad situations and trying to figure out ways to move and escape from there …

How has jiu-jitsu changed your life?

Gave me goals. Not only in the competitions but also in my health, anti-stress, family environment and I wanted to show that to be good you don’t need to be arrogant or treat people in a different way. Because being a champion does not mean you are a better person than anyone else. You just do your job well as a fighter.

When did you finally know you had made it big in the jiu-jitsu world?

When I started getting emails from people telling me that I inspire them. When people say that they saw me as a role model. But the main one was when people get to know me for the first time and they are shocked how normal person I am. As they realize that I’m just a normal random guy. I treat everyone like I would like to be treated. There is no star mentality in my head. We are all friends in the same boat and I think this shows that humbleness and respect are things very important in people’s characters. We can make the world much better if everyone is nice to everyone and don’t take advantage of the others for what they’ve achieved.


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