|Name: Zorobabel Moreira Jr.
Place Of Birth: Rio De Janeiro
Zorobabel Moreira Jr, 28, is a champion of the World Jiu-Jitsu Championship, commonly known as the Mundials. He has more than 18 years of experience in Brazilian Jiu-jitsu (BJJ) and has won numerous regional and national titles in Brazil. He recently took part in the ESPN Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) event in May.
To prepare for the event, Moreira Jr has added muay thai, boxing and wrestling to his repertoire. He admits he has much to learn from these disciplines.
“In MMA, BJJ is proven to be the best ground-fighting skill – and it’s my strength. Muay thai is the best striking skill. I have much room for improvement in this, though,” he says.“Combining these two forms is both a physical and intellectual challenge.”
Moreira Jr views his training as a continuous process of physical, mental, emotional and spiritual self-improvement. “Through my training, I have gained confidence, discipline, focus, mental strength, respect and an unbreakable will,” he says. “When it comes to training, consistency is the key.”
He trains six days a week to develop cardiovascular and explosive strength, agility and flexibility.
Have A Fixed Programme
Moreira Jr trains for two hours each session. “On a typical training day, I would do two sessions, sometimes three,” he says. That’s four to six hours of training. “Each two-hour session starts with a 30-minute run, then skipping rope for 15 minutes, shadow boxing, 10 rounds of pad work and bags, then sparring for a few rounds, followed by heavy bag work for the knees and, finally, 300 push-ups and 300 sit-ups.”
“There are days that I don’t feel like training. But even then, I grit my teeth and stick with the programme anyway,” says Moreira Jr. “It’s about your mental strength. I’m a professional fighter; laziness is not an option.”
To him, this is the level of discipline required of martial arts. “Over time, if you’re able to ignore that lazy voice in your head, you’ll quiet it completely.”
Add Strength And Conditioning
At a competitive level, a proponent of BJJ and MMA will add strength and conditioning sessions to supplement his training. “There’s an MMA-specific circuit that I do, which involves kettlebell training, pounding a heavy bag on the floor, rubber band running, pad work, medicine ball exercises and explosive jumping drills. I also lift weights twice a week,” Moreira Jr says.
Work With The Best
Knowing his strengths and limitations is integral to the process of improving himself, he declares. “To go further – to be the best – I train with the best so that I can improve in my weaker areas,” he says. His coaches from Evolve Mixed Martial Art are world champions, too. These men give Moreira Jr different perspectives on the areas that he can improve. “I rely on their input. They help to develop my game plan and I implement it.”
Being a hothead in martial arts will not help you. In spite of his deadly fighting skills, Moreira Jr displays a mild-mannered disposition. “On the contrary, one of the greatest qualities to have in BJJ or any martial art is humility,” he says. “That’s how I continue to learn and improve my skills – by keeping an opening mind and being able to accept what people can teach me.”