Professor Helio “Soneca” joins the show to talk about the early days of Gracie Barra, career opportunities in BJJ, working with elite MMA fighters and building an academy. He also states that the Rubber Guard was a position he came up with decades ago. Click “Read More” for show notes! SHOW NOTES:

  • Origins / Finding Jiu-Jitsu
  • How he earned his nickname
  • Why he’s a night owl
  • Training at Clube Gracie (The original Gracie Barra)
  • Tournaments in Rio back in the day
  • The differences between a fighter and a teacher
  • Career paths in Jiu-Jitsu
  • The effect of BJJ’s global exposure in 1993 on Brazil
  • Working with elite MMA fighters
  • Winning the first Worlds in 1996
  • Facing your idols in competition
  • His MMA experience
  • The Pummel
  • Helio Soneca: Ladies’ Man
  • The Rubber Guard
  • Coming to the US
  • Building an academy / The early days of his school
  • His favorite thing about teaching Jiu-Jitsu
  • One of his favorite student transformation stories
  • The challenges of academy ownership