Bruno Oliveira has been for 10 years a Jiu-Jitsu black belt, but it was in the 2018/2019 season that he decided to invest off the mat to achieve his personal goals within his sport career.
Throughout his journey it had been Bruno who managed his own training, tactical analyses and concepts to evolve. But he had to shake up that structure to reach a new level.
First, Bruno invested in a performance manager, who was responsible for transforming his physical evolution. The black belt also prioritized caring for his mind and specific Jiu-Jitsu training. The result was excellent and the athlete reached the mark of seven medals in International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation (IBJJF) tournaments, with two gold, one silver, four bronze medals. He hasn’t missed a podium since the change.
Below, Bruno writes about the three main changes he made to evolve in Jiu-Jitsu.
“In the past, I believed that the amount of gym training and working hours on the mat would give me a better performance. It was your typical three times a day training, 10 to 12 sparring partners, every day having ‘wars’…
“That, really, was the example I had of proper training that I did for much of my colored belts. It always left me with injuries and over-trained and my results weren’t always the best and I could never fight at 100%.
“That’s when I decided to hire fitness expert Rafael Ribeiro, who was already an acquaintance of mine. Rafael has changed my whole training spreadsheet, I have a set time to sleep and wake up. I have all the planning for my next championships too. Today my training is separated into physical, tactical, theoretical and mental. Today, for example, I seek the hardest rolls on the mat and simulate the reality that I will face in the next championships. I no longer don’t do 10 workouts without breaks, which left me broken and injured. I keep training hard, but wisely.”
Have a strong mind
“I always thought that nothing can be harder than my training, that the price I pay is all the sacrifice I can make. There is no doubt when you do your part. What you do reflects on your achievements. I learned to deal with defeats and, especially, with victory. I never let defeat enter my heart or victory go to my head. Before I fight, I always make a visualization of what I can do, what I believe will happen. It’s been working.”
Visit other gyms
“During my travels, I usually visit gyms to learn from other teachers and athletes. Because of that, I get details that can make a difference in my game. When I went to fight at the Las Vegas Open and the World Master, I took the opportunity to train at Carlson Gracie Jr.’s gym. It was amazing to share the mat with him and see how he saw the positions. I got to learn a lot about positioning and grip detail. Visiting other gyms is a step to evolve, as a mind opened never returns to normal.”