Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Team History, Fighter Stats, Biographies and News

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Female Jiu Jitsu Competitors

Find here some of the top competitors of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, past and present, from the very first female black belt in the sport (Yvone Duarte) to the most accomplished woman of all time, Gabi Garcia. On this section of BJJ Heroes you will be able to read about their deeds and see these amazing representatives of the sport in action.

Kristin Mikkelson is a Brazilian jiu jitsu black belt under Hannette Staack having also worked extensively with André Terêncio, being a top representative of the …

Ana Carolina Schmitt is a Brazilian jiu jitsu black belt under coach Marcos Cunha, having also worked extensively with coaches such as Juliano Wandalen …

Canadian grappler Yacinta Nguyen is a Brazilian jiu jitsu black belt under Jorge Britto a rank she also achieved in judo, being an international …

Maria Malyjasiak, often referred to as “Marysia” Malyjasiak is a Polish born Brazilian jiu jitsu black belt under Abmar Barbosa, and a Pan American champion …

Thais Ramos is a historic Brazilian jiu jitsu figure, being the sport’s first female black belt world champion under the International Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Federation (IBJJF), an achievement accomplished in 1998.

Carina Santi is a Brazilian jiu jitsu black belt under Júlio Pinheiro and one of the top female competitors of her generation with medals …

Erin Herle is an American born, Brazilian jiu jitsu black belt under Rubens Charles (Cobrinha) having also worked extensively with other legendary instructors such …

Nívia Moura, also known as Nina is a jiu jitsu black belt under Betinho Ventura and a representative of the US Gracie Gym team in this sport/martial art’s international circuit, for whom she conquered important titles.

Catherine Fuhro Perret is a Brazilian jiu jitsu black belt under Leonardo Vieira (at Checkmat HQ), having also worked extensively with Ricardo Vieira (at …

Andressa Cintra is a jiu jitsu black belt under Sebastian Lalli of Checkmat, having also worked under the guidance of Luiz Guilherme (Guigo), Caio Almeida. Cintra broke out into this martial art’s scene as a purple belt, with wins at the CBJJ Brazilian Nationals and IBJJF World Championships.

Raquel Pa’aluhi Canuto is a Brazilian jiu jitsu black belt under Robert Drysdale and a representative of the Zenith team in the sport’s international …

Samantha Cook is a British born Brazilian jiu jitsu black belt under Marco Canha, and one of the top Checkmat BJJ team representatives in the sport/martial art’s international circuit.

Karen Antunes is a jiu jitsu black belt under Mayko Araújo, being also one of the top athletes in the sport’s female lightweight class. Antunes paved her way to the big leagues of the sport in the lower belt divisions, where she conquered 3 IBJJF world titles among many other important placements. However, it was her performance at the prestigious Five Super League tournament on August 2015

Gazzy Parman is a pioneer for women’s jiu jitsu and a black belt under John Lewis. A unique character in the female competitive grappling scene throughout the 2000’s decade, Gazzy’s outspoken demeanor and competitive accolades made her a fan favorite across the globe.

Felicia Oh is a Brazilian jiu jitsu black belt under Jean Jacques Machado, being part of the Woman’s BJJ Dirty Dozen as the 6th woman outside Brazil to achieve the rank in this martial art (5th in the USA). Oh is also an accomplished competitor in both gi and no-gi, having medalled in important events such as the World and Pan American Championships (gi and nogi), the ADCC as well as the US Open, to name a few.

Deborah Christine Maxwell, commonly known as DC Maxwell is a Brazilian jiu jitsu black belt under Saulo Ribeiro, being part of the Woman’s BJJ Dirty Dozen as the 3rd woman outside Brazil to achieve the rank in this martial art (2nd in the USA). Maxwell is an extremely important figure in the development of the sport/martial art in the East Coast of the United States, particularly within the Delaware Valley and Tri-State area, where DC was one of the very first female athletes and jiu jitsu gym owners.

Cynthia Omatsu, commonly known as Cindy Omatsu, is a Japanese-American black belt in Brazilian jiu jitsu under Rigan Machado and Leka Vieira, being best known as the first female grappler outside of Brazil to have achieved the rank of black belt in this martial art (2002). Omatsu also gained notoriety in the jiu jitsu circuit as an interviewer for Grapple TV during the early/mid 2000’s, co-hosting the online show with a fellow teammate Felicia Oh.

Rikako Yuasa, also known as “Lady Sasa”, is a Japanese born, Brazilian jiu jitsu black belt under the prestigious Yukinori Sasa, being also one of the most accomplished female competitors of her generation. Competing in the light featherweight division (53.5kg/118lbs) for the Paraestra (Shinagawa) academy, Yuasa won important titles, such as the World Championship, Asian Open as well as European Open.

Joaquina Bonfim is a Brazilian jiu jitsu black belt under the illustrious coach “Zé Radiola”, leader of Gracie Barra – Pernambuco, an academy that has produced a long list of talented grapplers, such as Lucas Rocha, Otávio Sousa or Victor Estima. One of the main female black belt competitors to have come out of her state, Joaquina has cinched important titles on a national and international level, such as Brazilian National Champion (CBJJ/IBJJF), National Pro Champion (UAEJJ) or World Champion (CBJJE).

Emily Kwok is a Japanese born Canadian, who holds the rank of black belt in Brazilian jiu jitsu under Ricardo Almeida. Known as a pioneer of the sport and a great ambassador for women’s jiu jitsu, Kwok has won numerous titles such as World Jiu Jitsu Champion (gi and nogi). She is also known for her work with Marcelo and Tati Garcia.

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