How Learning Portuguese will Benefit Your Time in Rio de Janeiro

When one door closes, another one opens. It has rained pretty extensively this last week, hence the lack of pictures and excitement. Apologies. The lack of sunshine has forced me to try out some Portuguese.

Learning the language will improve your stay. Period. Whether it’s ordering some of the local culinary specialities, learning the details of techniques or attempting to chat up that cute Brazilian at Shenanigans/Emporios, knowing even a bit will help you tremendously. People will take a more genuine interest in you and they’ll make an effort to make you sound like a local (including the regional accents; god forbid you pronounce things like a Paulista).

This blog was written by Connection Rio sponsored athlete Michael Tlalka. He’ll be blogging weekly on his experiences in Rio de Janeiro.

Start off with the simple phrases that will engrain themselves with daily repetition and then move onto more specific stuff. Above all, don’t be shy, smile and speak loudly. You’re more likely to achieve your desired goal if your conversation partner can actually hear you.

Life in the Connection Rio House
When it’s raining, the quality of people you live with is of the utmost importance. They can either make or break your stay. Thankfully, the current crew is full of characters and there’s not a single boring moment. Whether it’s our Canadian version of “Jon Jones” trying to be a skateboarding pro. or ‘Dogman’ imparting his words of wisdom, you’ll have a great time even when heavens open up. As you can probably guess, most people get nicknames fairly early on (Belgian/Terminator, Baby Donald Trump, Butterbean, Posh Boy, Dogman) and some stick better than others. Accept them and move on. Even if you look nothing like Michael McIntyre

Training BJJ in Rio
On top of the usual excellent training at Gordo’s, Connection Rio organised an outing to Brazilian Top Team. Having seen the gym on the Internet, I expected it to be situated in a rough neighbourhood and for the training to be reminiscent of a war zone. I couldn’t have been more wrong.

The guys were very open, friendly (especially ‘Brasilia’, who kept telling each of us that he welcomes us in his home) and super technical. They had very open games and were all devoid of an ego. It was a pleasant surprise, considering I was worried about sustaining Palhares-esque injuries while training there. So far, the academy visits were excellent breaks in the training routine and let you compare your game to people from all over the place. Highly recommended.

To add a bit of spice to my stay, I’ve decided to compete at the State Luta Livre championship. It’s happening on April 13th and I have a little weight cut ahead of me. It wouldn’t be an issue if I wasn’t invited to Pedro’s wedding the night before. My self-discipline will be tested to the limit.

Ate mais tarde.

From training and accommodation to academy visits and special tours, and even small group classes with the best teachers Rio has to offer, Connection Rio offers everything you need for the perfect jiu-jitsu holiday!

Connection Rio is the best combination of accommodation and BJJ training in Rio de Janeiro. Contact us today and plan your trip to train BJJ in Rio!

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