Musaad Alturif “Sheik” is a 35-year-old Arab with a mission to put his country on the world Jiu-Jitsu map. Interest in martial arts began when he was young in Saudi Arabia, his home country, where he was part of a taekwondo class. But his story changed when he first traveled to Brazil, where he lived for 15 years, between Sorocaba and São Paulo. Before having Jiu-Jitsu as a profession, he flirted with Muay Thai because of the call from a close friend who, after three months of training, invited him to finally put on the gi again.
A Jiu-Jitsu practitioner since 2013, today purple belt Musaad uses his knowledge to help the sport grow and, especially, to make the population healthier through the practice of the sport. His personal goal is also to put his nation on the competitive map of Jiu-Jitsu, alongside Brazil and the United States.
“The biggest goal with Jiu-Jitsu in Saudi Arabia is to use the sport to see healthier Arab people in every respect, such as mentally and physically. I also preach respect between one student and another, regardless of social levels. The community is still small compared to other countries, but it continues to grow in a balanced and healthy way,” says Sheik.
The instructor also tells how his teaching methodology works from the first introductory class, even if the student has never had contact with Jiu-Jitsu. He then projects what his work will look like five years from now.
“In the first class, I explain more about the Jiu-Jitsu culture, because I prefer to prepare the practitioner’s mind to know what our sport is, on and off the mat, being the first step in the introductory class,” he says. “Then, in the practical classes, I show the step-by-step according to my teaching didactics. In five years the sport will grow a lot, they will see how Jiu-Jitsu transforms lives. Arab Jiu-Jitsu can also shape world-renowned black belts. Why not.”
Under the tutelage of Eduardo Telles, one of Jiu-Jitsu’s most popular black belts, Musaad tells of his relationship with his teacher and how he met him.
“Telles is an athlete I have always admired for everything he has done in his career and continues to do so. What I most admire about him is the inner strength he has to adapt to whatever situation he faces in his career. He was a 37-year-old world champion in no-gi, and that made a big impression on me. His career is impressive.
“When I went through a situation in my career he was the one who helped me and opened the doors for me to be part of and represent team Nine Nine, and that’s where admiration became respect. I want to live Jiu-Jitsu like he lives it, on and off the mat. Our story will contain many achievements.”