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The Story Behind the First Viral BJJ Video

Oss Reader

Have you seen this video?

video preview

That was my first fight from the Open Class division during Worlds 2008.

That year I trained A LOT. I killed myself during training sessions and was feeling super strong. I had all the confidence and power of will.

I had submitted all my opponents in my weight division including the legend Brailio Estima in the finals 🤩 5 matches and 5 submissions!

When I went to fight Worlds that year, I wanted to show the different style of BJJ I’d been developing. Until that day, no one had ever fought like that.

I was inspired by the globetrotters from basketball 🏀 where they do crazy moves showing that basketball can be more entertaining.

I went to that match thinking about what I could do to call the attention of everyone’s eyes inside the Pyramid (the venue) that day…

That was my warm up match to feel how I was feeling and what I could expect from my conditioning, grips, mobility, technique…

I was feeling calm and cool… I was even feeling super happy…

until my opponent decided to heel hook me!

I pointed it out to the referee…

The ref just said nothing and that made me think…

“How come you didn’t see the heel hook ref?”

I kept fighting until this guy made another illegal grip (grabbed four fingers inside my pants and tore my pants apart!)

(If you watch the entire match, you see all of that happening…)

This made me angry and I turned on beast mode… 🤣

…but in a joyful way!

That was actually how I always trained – having fun and trying new tricks!

I used it as motivation to turn on the globetrotters BJJ mode on. As we Brazilians say, the ginga! 🤣

Then I took advantage of it and I moved like that. The whole venue went crazy!.

YouTube was new for everyone and that video became the very first BJJ viral video!

People were commenting about it. Lots of people criticized me why I didn’t just finish the guy fast…

But to be honest. I wasn’t annoyed with my opponent, but with the ref.

Anyway, at the end of the day, more people learned about BJJ because of that video.

I’ve even met some guys that started training BJJ because of that video!

Other guys have sent me videos of them hitting that move where I roll over the opponent 😂

I ended up getting Bronze in the absolutes that year, losing the semi finals by points against Roger Gracie – it was a great match as well 😉

All because I was having fun and trying new things!


Andre Galvao
Atos Jiu-Jitsu Head Coach
Jiu-Jitsu Hall Of Fame Member​