The health benefits of Jiu Jitsu are not foreign to any of us. Whether we started ready to compete, or with the intention of learning to defend ourselves, I am sure all of us have seen some kind of transformation in ourselves. Ana Laura Cordeiro is no different. She started training BJJ at the age of 17 to help her get in shape, and ended up a force to be reckoned with. Cordeiro’s career is filled with winning consecutive world titles. Her record of 65-0 certainly didn’t hinder her in anyway when she was invited to teach in America by Marcio Feitosa. It came as no surprise when in 2009 she was awarded with her black belt from Barra founder Carlos Gracie Junior.
Ana is no stranger to heartache. After an aggressive grappling career, and impressive record, Anna was almost forced into an early retirement due to a back injury. Cordeiro isn’t sure what caused the injury, but chalks it up the aggravation to a combination of super hard training camps, and training with heavier and stronger people. Before her injury, Ana was training twice a day and teaching five hours once a week. She tried everything she could to avoid surgery. For five years to be exact, but eventually she decided to do a fusion lower back surgery.
For the past two years, doctors have been telling her that she wouldn’t recover all the way, and if she did she wouldn’t be able to compete like she used to. But at the 2015 ADCC, Cordeiro was a true comeback kid. She overcame the injury and took gold in the +60kg weigh division. Anna credits more than just hard training for her victory. She believes in herself. Some days the most important thing she has to be is mentally strong.
Anna’s is glad to be able to comeback, and compete and represent her team at tournaments. She wants to thank everyone that has been by her side through all this, and with adrenaline pumping through her veins, she can’t wait for 2016.