Fight for all, bar none

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Photos: Carlos Ozorio

Following the initial victory of Brazilian congressman José Mentor in moving forward a motion to pass a law barring MMA broadcasts on Brazilian television, the battle to protect martial arts in Brazil has had a victory of its own.

This Monday in São Paulo, Brazil, there was a meeting that kicked off a project to introduce fighting arts like Jiu-Jitsu and muay thai – MMA too – to children, teenagers and adults in needy communities. Former secretary of sports of São Paulo Walter Feldman, town councilman Paulo Frange and Jeferson Lopes received some backing in their endeavor to support martial arts in Brazil from Carlão Barreto, Marcelo Nigue and a number of businessmen. GRACIEMAG.com was there too.

The initial idea is to build a great training center offering several styles of fighting arts that compose MMA. The location for this first “fight park” is pretty much set in stone: Itaquera, São Paulo.

We’re in the era of the sport; let’s make the most of it” Walter Feldman

“We want to make the most of the triumph we had against this project to ban the broadcast of MMA on TV, something that impairs the growth of the sport, a regression when compared to what is going on in the United States and around the world. We want to draw people to the sport through MMA. It’s the chance for a lot of people to have a pastime and job, rather than being idle. We’re in the era of the sport; let’s make the most of it!” says Walter Feldman.

“To start, this training center in Itaquera is a flagship that can expand throughout Brazil. But we want to make it beyond just needy neighborhoods, but the middle and upper classes, by way of schools and universities. These days there are a lot of youths from the better-off socio-economic groups who are taken by drugs and crime. In the future, we want to put together a fight museum and improve conditions for teachers specializing in these activities,” adds Paulo Frange.

The guest panel discussed their opinions on how this new move for the advancement of martial arts and society should proceed. Check back with GRACIEMAG.com for further news.

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