World Champion Anna Laura Cordeiro

Instructor Ana Laura Cordeiro’s drive and focus make her an invaluable part of the GB Team. An avid martial artist, she remains undefeated in over 40 fights in a glorious competitor career. Ana Laura finds teaching Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu to be among the most positive, powerful experiences in her life. Off the mat she is devoting a lot of time to studying english and learning more about the american culture.-Gracie Barra Upland

Life is filled with the unexpected. It’s what keeps it interesting, it’s what challenges us. I find myself more often these days on the road and working on weekends, of course missing all the good tournaments. It’s been a year since I injured my lower back and hips, a slow recovery, but it has given me time to put into my photography. I had to go to LA in February for work, disappointed to miss yet another tournament, but lo and behold I found out the Gracie Barra had opened up an academy in Upland a few miles from my hotel. To make matters even more awesome was the fact that the legendary Ana Laura Cordeiro was the instructor there. I had just been talking to Lana Stefanac about her weeks prior. I asked Lana who were some of the top fighters that she admired. Ana Laura was the first name she mentioned. Ana Laura is a phenomenal fighter who won the Mundials Medium Heavyweight Black Belt division and took silver in the Absolute Black Belt division as a brown belt. She is an undefeated with a 65-0 record and was promoted to the rank of black belt in 2009 by Master Carlos Gracie Jr. himself. But in late 2009, she suffered from a herniated disk which has since prevented her from competing. It was a tremendous honor to get to train with her and anyone in the Inland Empire area should jump at the chance to train with her regularly. I took a few quick pictures of her, luckily I had the sense to lug my camera with me, however the film back I brought had light leaks and my film speed was too slow to get a crisp shot. Nonetheless, the private spiderguard session was phenomenal! I hope to get back down to LA one day soon to train again with Ana Laura and get some better shots.

Sometimes things don’t turn out the way we plan. Being injured is a horrible experience. You have to make very large lifestyle changes and be smarter with the way you train. Ana Laura’s presence off the competition mat is very much missed, but the time and dedication she gives to her students is absolutely priceless. She continues to contribute to the sport as a professor and source of inspiration.

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