Joao Gabriel Rocha is a black belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, a belt he earned training under the instruction of Rafael “Formiga” Barbosa and Leandro “tatu” Escobar. Before earning his black belt (on January 2013), Joao Gabriel Rocha was regarded as one of the top brown belts in the world, having won every important competition on the BJJ calendar in that belt division.
Joao Gabriel Rocha Jiu Jitsu
Full Name: João Gabriel de Oliveira e Silva Rocha
- World Champion (2012 brown belt weight & absolute, 2011 brown, 2008 junior blue)
- Pan American Champion (2012 brown)
- South American Champion (2011 brown)
- Brazilian National Champion (2013 black, 2012 brown 2011 brown weight & absolute, 2010 purple, 2009 purple, 2008 junior blue)
- World silver medallist (2009 purple, 2008 junior blue absolute)
- World No Gi Silver Medal (2010 brown)
- Brazilian National Silver Medal (2012 brown)
Favourite Technique: Well Rounded
Weight Division: Super Pesado (up to 100kg/221lbs)
Team/Association: Soul Fighters
Joao Gabriel Rocha Biography
Joao Gabriel Rocha was born on the 11th of July, 1991 in Jacarepaguá, though he moved as an infant to the Tijuca burg in Rio de Janeiro. Joao Gabriel started training as a toddler, more precisely, when he was two years and 8 months old. His Jiu Jitsu initiation came through a Summer camp for toddlers which included Jiu Jitsu in its activities, the instructor was none other then the man who would become responsible for the refereeing of the IBJJF (Jiu Jitsu’s most important governing body), Mr Alvaro Mansur. At the time, Joao Gabriel’s parents noticed that young Rocha enjoyed BJJ so they enrolled him in an academy where he could train regularly.
Training Jiu Jitsu seemed to be Joao Gabriel’s calling, and he never stopped practicing BJJ since the beginning. Joao earned all his junior belts training with Marcos Carvalho, and from the green belt onward his tuition was handed to Leandro Escobar and Rafael Barbosa. With the support of his family Joao Gabriel Rocha managed to leave his university studies midway to dedicate himself fully to competition, reaping the benefits of that choice with consecutive wins at the world’s biggest competitions.
At the start of 2013 Joao Gabriel had the opportunity to compete in the Copa Podio, a professional BJJ event which starred the top talent in Jiu Jitsu’s heavyweight division. Competing as a brown belt (one of the two brown belts carefully selected to be part of the tournament), Joao Gabriel won two of his 5 fights, proving that he belonged in the black belt circuit. As a result, Joao Rocha was handed his black belt on that same day, the 13th of January.
(banner picture taken by: William Burkhardt of BJJ Pix)
Joao Gabriel vs Thiago Silva WJJPC Rio Qualifier 2011
Joao Gabriel vs Antonio Borges