GFTeam, or Grappling Fight Team, is a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu team founded in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in 2003 by Julio Cesar Pereira. The team quickly gained popularity and recognition for its successful competition record and strong emphasis on technique, discipline, and camaraderie. Today, GFTeam has over 100 affiliated academies worldwide, making it one of the largest and most respected BJJ teams in the world.
GFTeam Joondalup was founded by Marcelo Guimaraes, in 2017, out of a desire to bring the structure and knowledge around learning BJJ to those living in the northern suburbs. From Two Rocks to Fremantle, students travel to GFTeam Joondalup because of a clear understanding of how to share this information to a diverse range of students.
One of the benefits of joining GFTeam Joondalup as a beginner is the high-quality instruction and emphasis on fundamentals. GFTeam instructors prioritise teaching solid technique, which is essential for building a strong foundation in BJJ. Additionally, the team has a strong focus on discipline and respect, which can help beginners develop good habits and attitudes towards training that will benefit them in the long run.
Another benefit of joining GFTeam Joondalup is the opportunity for competition. GFTeam has a reputation for producing top-level competitors who have won major tournaments such as the World Championships and the Pan American Championships. This can be appealing for those who are interested in competing at a high level and want to be part of a team that has a proven track record of success.
Beyond the technical and competitive aspects, GFTeam is known for its strong sense of community and camaraderie. Members of the team often describe it as a family, and there is a strong emphasis on supporting and encouraging each other both on and off the mats. This can be especially beneficial for beginners who may feel intimidated or nervous when starting their BJJ journey.
Of course, it’s important to note that GFTeam may not be the best fit for everyone. Some individuals may prefer a more casual or laid-back training environment, while others may be drawn to teams that have a different style or approach to BJJ. Ultimately, the best way to determine whether GFTeam is right for you is to visit a local affiliate and see for yourself what the training and community are like.
Marcelo Guimaraes is a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) practitioner who began his journey at the age of 15 when he started weight training to look like his friends. However, after three years, his shoulders became sore, and he grew tired of his daily training routine. At that time, some of his friends were talking about BJJ, and Edward Bertolini invited him to train with him. In his first class, Marcelo faced Ronald Candido, also known as Pacman, who would later train Jose Aldo and other famous fighters. Although Marcelo thought he could beat Pacman, he was put in a triangle choke four times, leaving him dizzy as if he had been hit by a truck. Despite feeling discouraged, Marcelo decided to continue training.
Initially, Marcelo did not want to compete, but after three months of training, he drove for two hours with Aline, his partner, to compete by himself. Although he lost the match, Marcelo received feedback from people watching that helped him make the necessary tweaks to improve his game. Marcelo’s persistence paid off, and he won his first gold medal in his fourth competition. He was most proud of the fact that he signed up, prepared, and showed up, making his biggest challenge, which was to compete, a success.
After a year of training, Marcelo received his blue belt and progressed to daily and two-a-day sessions while balancing work and studies. Later on, Marcelo moved to Australia in 2008 and took a break from BJJ. When he returned to training, he suffered a knee injury due to being out of shape and possibly dehydrated. Despite this setback, Marcelo committed to returning to BJJ after realising that he needed to do what he loved.
Marcelo began training with Gustavo Falciroli and then moved to Diogo Consoni, who promoted him to purple belt. Later on, Marcelo was invited to train with Fabio ‘Coringa’ Nunes and eventually began instructing at his gym. Marcelo’s desire to open his own gym led him to partner with someone, but the partnership was unsuccessful, with only one member turning up. Eventually, Marcelo opened GFTeam Joondalup, and Kieren was the first member to join. Since then, more members have joined and stayed committed to training for 6-7 years, which Marcelo believes is due to the value of honesty and reliability in communicating with each other.
In the early days of setting up his gym, Marcelo still worked installing roller shutters during the day, which impacted the quality of his coaching. However, after committing full-time to the gym, Marcelo focused on teaching longevity and strength development to his students. Marcelo emphasises leading by example and teaches the importance of stretching, breathing, eating well, exercising, and being present during training. Today, Marcelo is grateful to be able to train, take care of his health, and focus on his students.
GFTEAM - Unit 4, 89 Winton Road - JOONDALUP