Countdown to the 2016 Worlds: Leandro Lo ready to try his 5th gold medal while still eyeing the open class title

Leandro Lo against Otavio Sousa in the World's middleweight final. Photo: Ivan Trindade / GRACIEMAG
Leandro Lo against Otavio Sousa in the 2014 Worlds middleweight final. Photo: Ivan Trindade / GRACIEMAG

Leandro Lo has been a fan favorite since he rose to fame in 2011.

Now a four times black belt world champion is three different weight divisions (Light: 2012-2013; Middle: 2014, Medium-heavy 2015), Lo is getting ready for his sixth appearance in the world championship looking for his fifth gold medal.

If he wins, he would be right up there with the best competitors in history, a selected few with more than four world titles as a black belt.

Even so, Lo wants more and that’s why for the fourth year in a row, his name will be on the open class bracket.

Lo already has a bronze medal in 2015 and a fourth place finish in 2014 in his record, but he wants to go all the way.

That’s the main reason he decided to bulk up and go from lightweight to medium-heavy in two years.

For 2016, Lo says that he’s doing the same he did in his training camp: “I train for my tournaments the same way, rolling with my teammates.”

Leandro Lo competing in New York in 2014
Leandro Lo competing in New York in 2014

Even tough the training setting is always the same, Lo said in a interview to Vitor Freitas in 2015 that what he does during training changes a lot: “I’m always trying new things to be a better athlete. You can’t stay on your preferred game all the time. You have to allow yourself to be uncomfortable. That will only bring you good things in the end. To be able to play on top and on the bottom is essential. You don’t need to be the best at each one, but you have to know your way around it. Train until you have a strong enough base and a dangerous enough guard.”

He also shared one thing that he liked to do that he thinks gives him a little edge over his opponents: “Go through all the training without resting. Try to go against the toughest of your partners, those who give you the most trouble. Even when you feel tired, keep going. This will increase your endurance and enhance your perception of the fight.”

The leader of NS Brotherhood, in São Paulo Brazil, did another thing differently in 2016, as he was seen training with Felipe Pena and Marcus Buchecha recently.

Another difference between the previous years and the camp for the 2016 Worlds for Lo was a particular off the mat activity: “I did more weight lifting to be stronger for the open class.”

All in all, Lo loves what he does, as he revealed to Vitor Freitas in 2015: “Make sure you are a happy person whenever is time to roll. Be there to do what you like the most and not because you have to be there. If you go train without really wanting to do it, you lose your focus. Love what you do and you’ll do it at a 100% rate.”

The 2016 World Jiu-Jitsu championship is scheduled June 2-5, in Long Beach, California.

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Coverage brought to you by GAMENESS.

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