Need Suggestions about Rio

Hi all. I was hoping to get some good suggestions. I would like some information on bjj academies in Rio. Specifically, I want to know what academies would be recommended in Copacabana, Ipanema, and Leblon. Barra Gracie is a great academy, however, geographically it is not relevant to this post. So if anyone has any good suggestions, please post them. Don't forget to say why you are recommending the academy as well.
I know of some academies in the area (Nova Uniao, Paiva/alliance, Marcelo Yogi, Saulo's place, BTT, etc.). However, I would like to know what people have to say about where they have trained in Brasil. For example, the level of teaching, how big the school was, how many people train there, how many black/brown/purples belts, what an average class is like, etc.

Plus, I am sure some of you have trained at places I do not know about. I would be interested in that info as well. Thanks again everyone.

Make sure you try Nova Geração, under Prof. Toco. You cannot beat its location (Leblon) and the training you get there is really good. The classes don't get too crowded, you ahve a very good number of purples, browns and black belts and the atmosphere is super friendly.

Definately check the guides on onthemat and look at the
guides on as well...very helpful information
on both sites.

I trained at Carlson's school in Copacabana, and loved it. The instruction was great and there will good sized classes filled with purples, browns, and blacks. I recommend taking some privates from Ari Gallo or Saporito.

The only drawback was that there werent many there who were into competition, so I dont know if the sparring level would be as high as many of the more active schools in Rio.

Hey dude. I was in Copacabana for the last month of August. I lived on Avenida N.S. de Copacabana, a block from the beach. Saulo is my instructor, but he isn't really in Copacaban anymore. He teaches at Gracie Tijuca now. The school is awesome, though, and I would highly recommend it to anyone. To get to his school, just take the subway from Cardeal Arcoverde to Sao Francisco Xavier. (line one, I think, towards Zona Norte) Then, walk up the street to Sao Francisco Xavier (the name of a street) and turn left. Wlak down it until you see the Monte Sinai building. His school is on the 6th floor, and he teaches in the afternoon.


i would recommend master jiu jitsu.. its in copacabana near the ipanema border. the head instructors are rodrigo 'comprido' medeiros, ricardo vieira(leozinho's brother), and felipe costa. the school is on rua francisco sa.

also you HAVE to at least check out gracie barra.

I'm jealous...

Hey guys, the suggestions are great. Please keep them coming. Make sure to leave the contact info if you have it.

I trained with Marcelo Yogui and would recommend it. He really looks after you and there is a great atmosphere at his club - people were constantly showing me great moves. I haven't been for a few ears but there were some great purple belts (quite a lot), several browns and blacks. A friend of mine went there not too long ago and said there were seven black belts on the mat each night.

it might be helpful if you tell us what youre looking for in a place.

I train at Nova Geração. If you need some additional info please contact me at

I'm with Andre. I trained primarily at Carlson's and I would highly
recommend Ari Galo's classes!


I am looking for good bjj. I particularly like to see a lot of fighters from middle weight and down. I am most impressed by the guys in those divisions. I am also looking for a friendly atmosphere. Meaning, I want to see cool moves, and I want to meet new and cool people. Keep the suggestions coming, it is real helpful. Thanks again.

Giving advice to people about Brazil is always brings back the memories from when I lived there....In that area(cpa, inp,leb) you're close to alot of good academies. Since I'm a Barra guy, I have to promote them. I really think you should consider going to Rillion Gracie's academy. He is debatably the most technical Gracie, and an extremely nice guy. His academy is located at one of the nicest gyms in will want to make friends with all the girls there for sure ;) Seriously the amount of ass in that gym alone, is reason enough to just train there. I would get a membership at the gym there, and workout in the daytime, afterwards head down to the beach, Post 10.....or is it 9?(sorry I was always in Barra). Then go to Rillions and train. I don't think he speaks too much English (I can't say, though, I always spoke to him in Portuguese)..but I'm sure his students will. The gym where the academy is located, is really one of the best in Rio.....lots of actors, models, athletes, professionals, etc. Really though, there are only a few major academies in Rio. If you want quantity, I have to recommend Gracie Barra, but if I wasn't with Barra, I would check out BTT(Lagoa) and Nova Uniao(Flamengo). If you have the money do some privates....if you do them in bulk, most of the guys will cut you a deal....probably can get them for 100 reais(about $30), maybe cheaper....Also bring some dough for gis, shorts, and shirts......selling those when you get back, could pay for all your privates and your flight. I would go and check out Fredson's too. He's such a cool guy, be warned though, I hear it's war in there...hehe....boa sorte(good luck)

Eriko1, thanks for the tip. Embarrassingly, I was unaware that Rillion was in Rio. I was always under the impression that he lived in the south of Brasil. I thought he was in Floripa. What is the contact info for his gym? The more details the better about the location so I know how to find it. If you have a phone number, that would also be great.

How are the people there? Do they show cool moves, are they willing to show new guys around, etc? Anxiously looking forward to hearing from you. Also, how close is his place to Marcelo Yogi's place?

I have to recommend Royler's academy, Gracie Humaita in Botofago. Lots of good guys, especially at the lighter weights, very technical and a small enough place to give it a great atmosphere when you are training. Also, I trained at Saulo's academy in Copacbana and Gracie Tijuca. Question, I heard Saulo is now teaching mostly at Tijuca, can anyone confirm this. If it wasn't for the great training I received from my affiliation, I would check out De la Riva's place as well as Ricardo Viera's place. Good luck on your trip.

Last week I was training where I always train,,Gracie Barra and there were more black belts training on this particular day than any other belt. This isn't that un-common. Can't beat that,,, more BB than white belts,,ha,,,you can get you ass kicked all day and everyday. As everyone above metioned there are plenty of good schools in Zona Sul,,,, De la Riva, Carlson, Paiva, Rillion, Cafe, Yogi, BTT, Pandernerias(sp) Royler, Saulo, Comprido, Oswaldo Alves and I sure I missed a handful.

I've gotta second CBK's recommendation . .. I had a really good time training with Ari Galo at Carlson's in Copacabana.

i think its good to have a mix.. 20 black belts isnt necessarily the best way to train. a place where they have an equal distribution of belts might make for a better range of training.

One possible factor for you is that Gracie Humaita (in Botafogo) is full of good English-speakers, from Royler on down.