Miyao brothers and the black belt: ‘We expect the same success as in other belts’

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Paulo and João Miyao now black belts

Paulo and João Miyao now black belts

The Miyaos are conquering the world with their Jiu-Jitsu. The Andirá, Paraná, Brazil-born boys moved to São Paulo because they were certain they wanted to compete professionally and grow in the gentle art. Away from family and living out of Cícero Costha’s gym for the past four years, the 22-year-olds picked up their black belts this week and, to them, this is just the beginning.

Check out our interview with Paulo and João, plus a video of the brothers training before the Brazilian Nationals, where they’ll be fighting starting today.

GRACIEMAG: After six years of hard work, how does it feel to get the black belt?

MIYAOS: We are very happy. In truth, it doesn’t make a difference whether it’s black. We’ll continue doing our best to be champions and reach the summit of the sport. We’ve been training a lot. It’s been four years here with Cícero Costha, away from our family, but we’re firm in our pursuit of our goals. We expect the same success we’ve had at the other belts. We want to win a lot of Worlds at black belt.

You guys are light athletes who often fight much heavier opponents. How does it feel to beat the big guys?

We’re used to it. Some lightweights are much tougher than most heavyweights. But we also look critically at our losses. A heavyweight’s weight is no excuse for losing to him.

You just arrived in Brazil after the World Championships and are already fighting the Nationals in São Paulo. How’s training going?

We had no injuries at the Worlds, so we’re training pretty normally for the Nationals. Jiu-Jitsu isn’t just a sport or a job; it’s something we enjoy doing day in, day out, and since we live here in the gym, we train all day.

What’s your inspiration?

We like Leandro Lo’s style, the Mendes brothers and we draw a lot of inspiration from master Cícero.

Have you fought each other?

No. We don’t have the habit of competing against each other or really anyone on our team. Also master vs. student doesn’t seem cool, it’s just how we feel about it. If we were matched up against each other, one would probably forfeit and make way for the other.

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