The second best thing about training BJJ in Rio with Connection Rio is the sheer amount of world class BJJ training available at some of the best academies in the world with some of the best teachers and competitors. However the very best thing about coming here is the people.
The people here are great because there is a really nice hospitable atmosphere, which makes it super easy to make friends. But the thing that makes it truly easy for people to get on is the common interest of jiu-jitsu. Jiu-jitsu means that you have a talking point with anyone here. People from all around the world come to train here at Connection Rio, from a huge variety of different backgrounds, but jiu-jitsu provides everyone with an opportunity to talk about anything from the latest matches, gis or techniques they have just learnt.
The Connection Rio house is actually a great forum for sharing ideas. Many times I have seen, here on the house mats, people showing the latest techniques from their last class to people who train elsewhere, then, in turn, showing them a technique they just learnt. There are also many experienced grapplers who come to stay here at Connection Rio who offer valuable insight into moves and help out lower grades in the house.
A great example would be when world class black belt Kit Dale came to stay here in the run up to Copa Podio. He not only offered some great insights into the life and training regime of a current international level competitor, but he was also super friendly and went over lots of techniques with people in the house. The house can be seen as a melting pot of ideas and experience that not only serve to improve everyone’s jiu-jitsu, but which also brings the whole house together.
Often the techniques that are show here on the mats are filmed then shared among everyone, which really shows the positive attitude toward group learning here. Because of the camaraderie in the house everyone genuinely wants to help each other improve. I have also noticed this attitude a lot in the gyms here I have trained at from the local Brazilians. I have actually spoke to black belts at Gordo’s about how they believe in helping everyone to improve as much as they can because then it brings the standard in the gyms up for everyone. Before I came here some people lead me to believe that gringos were treated differently and not shown all the details that the locals were, I could not have been more wrong.
The atmosphere here at Connection Rio is not just perfect for learning, but it is also perfect for enjoying learning. There is a wealth of experience and knowledge in the house that is available for anyone who wants it, and best of all it will be shown to you by some great people who will no doubt become great friends.