Well before coming to worldwide recognition for his striking skills and knockouts, José Aldo, the reigning UFC featherweight champion considered by GRACIEMAG to be the best MMA fighter of 2010, stood out in competition Jiu-Jitsu.
Removed from gi-clad combat, the black belt has noticed how a number of MMA fighters have been reappearing in gentle art competitions. André Galvão and Rafael dos Anjos are a couple of those who tested themselves this season. And UFC and Strikeforce fighters Nate Diaz, Ben Henderson and Cris Cyborg have added their names to the roster for the 2011 Worlds.
“It can only help. It keeps you in fight rhythm and gives you adrenaline; it’s good to do before one MMA fight and another. When I started out in MMA I’d do that, I’d compete in both. It’s a great art and it helps in MMA. These days I prefer to dedicate myself to the UFC, but I don’t think it’s a poor choice for the others to also compete in Jiu-Jitsu,” he says.
“This is no lie, every time I go to a Jiu-Jitsu championship it really makes me want to compete. But it’s not easy. To fight at peak performance in MMA I have to devote my time to a number of things. To compete in Jiu-Jitsu these days and have a chance of winning, I’d have to train in the gi like I did in the old days: morning, afternoon and night,” Aldo adds.