José Aldo Júnior was born on the 9th of September 1986 in the city of Manaus, Brazil. As a child he was very interested in Football (soccer), a sport which he played competitively. He was an aggressive player and often had scuffles with the players from the opposite teams. Júnior felt the need to join Capoeira (a Brazilian martial art) at the age of 14 to improve his fighting skills. By the age of 16 he had changed his mind as to what he wanted to accomplish as an adult. He believed he wanted to become a professional footballer as a child, but as a teenager he started feeling that he would become part of the fight game.
He moved to Rio de Janeiro (home to his favorite soccer club, Flamengo) on his own when he was 16 years old, against his mother’s wishes. He had very little money and no job, so his first few months were incredibly hard, living in the gym and in Favelas (Brazilian slums). The first correspondence his mother received from Júnior was a letter with a sea shell on it. Looking at the sea had been a dream of José Aldo Júnior’s since he was a child – though his mother never really thought this would be possible due to the long distance between Manaus and the coast – This letter represented the first goal on a list of accomplishments soon to come.
To start his fighting career on the right path, Júnior looked for the legendary coach André Pederneiras from Nova União, a man responsible for the development of fighters like Vitor “Shaolin”, Robson Moura, Ramon Lemos, Gustavo Dantas, Marlon Sandro and many others. Júnior trained under Pederneiras for a few weeks, and when the master found out about Júnior’s living arrangements he pulled Júnior aside and told him to start living in the academy, he also stopped charging him for the classes or membership fees. At Nova União he also met Vivianne, or Vivi, the woman that would later become his wife. She trained Muai Thay at the academy and caught Júnior’s eye immediately. They started dating and a few years into their relationship Júnior proposed to her in the ring, just after he won his fight.
José Aldo Júnior’s career in Jiu-Jitsu was promising, but he decided to prioritize his training regime to MMA (as that was where he could make a living), though he always considered himself a BJJ fighter. José has gone on to hold titles in both the WEC and the UFC.
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Bio Courtest of josealdojunior.com