Every so often comes a talent in the Brazilian Jiu Jitsu world that makes everyone pause in their tracks and take notice of what is unfolding before them. And, then again, once a while there are two of these situations.
But what are the chances that they would be twin brothers?
Well, Paulo & Joao Miyao clearly doesn’t care for what the odds are. The two young men, born in 1991, hail from Andira, Parana, Brazil. Despite their amazing skills, the brothers actually began their fighting career in Judo. Once they began grappling, they were all in.
Despite their parents’ wishes, the brothers relocated to Sao Paulo, Brazil to begin taking their training seriously. At the time, it might have seemed like the biggest leap of faith they could have taken, but in the long run, it has clearly paid off, and in dividends.
Even with their current status in the game, it’s hard to label these two protégés seeing that they didn’t start with Brazilian Jiu Jitsu at an early age. As previously mentioned, the boys began in Judo, and by the time they started grappling, they were already 16 years old.
In just six short years, the brothers climbed the ranks and have obtained their black belts. On top of that, the twins racked up some impressive accolades to go along with their black belts.
The Cicero Costha black belts have a lengthy laundry list of accolades to backup the talk that has surrounded them. Paulo alone boasts an impressive list:
Along with his major first place finishes, Paulo has also finished in the top-3 in other various major events around the world. If Paulo’s list of accomplishments isn’t enough, take a look at what Joao brings to the table:
Similarly to his brother, Joao also boasts some impressive finishes in the top-3 of other reputable tournaments as well.
After looking at their accomplishments—many of which have come in absolute divisions—it’s hard to chalk up the talk as just hype for these two brothers. The sporting world loves to point at hardware to show how good someone really is, and by using that logic, there is no denying that the Miyao brothers are two of the best in the world today.
However, your skills aren’t just defined by the shiny stuff that you have hanging from your wall at home. It’s one thing to point at medals and say “see, that’s how good I am!” But does it translate into the real deal? For the Miyao brothers, the answer is simply yes.
Its one thing to have the skills in practice and while training with your team, but what good is it if those skills don’t translate to the mat? For such bright prospects in the game, it was unclear as to how well the Miyao brother’s would transition into higher level competition.
Quickly, it became evident that these two young black belts were not to be taken lightly! While not the most physically intimidating grapplers you’ll see step on the mat, Paulo & Joao have a knack for controlling the pace of the match and dictating their opponents moves.
As displayed in his match against AJ Agazarm (above), Paulo shows that size doesn’t matter whatsoever in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Even when AJ threatened to escape or pass into a dominant position, Paulo leveraged his body and closed the gap between the two, making sure he could easily control the pace even if he were to miss out on an opportunity.
While the Miyao brothers are dangerous Gi grapplers, they have also ventured into the No Gi realm, and have seen success there as well. While competing against Pedro Arruda, Joao Miyao showed flashes of brilliance by working out of guard and attack from inverted positions.
If that didn’t prove they are the real deal, then take Paulo’s dominant showing against Augusto Galdez into account. From start to finish, Paulo put on a Jiu Jitsu clinic.
Even with supreme talent, the Miyao brothers are human just like you and I—despite what we may want to think! Their medals and belt ranking didn’t happen overnight, and was a process that took time.
While their rise to the top may have been rather rapid, it doesn’t take away from the fact that these two young men have logged in some serious mat time and have honed their skills in order to be considered two of the best in the world today in their weight class.
Whther you watch their matches or YouTube their names, you probably will notice that the brothers love to use the berimbolo sweep and they use it rather well.
Able to hit the sweep from various setups, the brothers are super dangerous with it. Used to leverage the momentum of their opponent and helping obtain the back, the berimbolo is a sequence that is slowly starting to take over the game o Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.
Hitting the move from various setups is a must, and can be a little difficult to learn, but not impossible. For instance, Joao Miyao shares with you how you can execute the sweep from the Ninja Armlock setup!
While the berimbolo from the Ninja Armlock can be a bit difficult, you may want to start by learning the original berimbolo. Luckily, both Joao & Paulo have that covered, and break it down nicely.
Obviously both of these variations share a few similarities.
At the end of the day, these two young men have left their mark on the sport and have no plans of exiting anytime soon. Prepare for the Miyao era in the Brazilian Jiu Jitsu world.
Coach Daniel is the founder and head publisher at Science of Skill, LLC. A martial arts black belt and self defense instructor, Dan has spent years training with and interviewing some of the world's best self protection experts. His passion lies in encouraging others to train smart and to improve the skills that make them safer and stronger.
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