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#52 Andre Terencio

Andre Terencio has been overcoming obstacles during his Jiu Jitsu journey. Obstacles that would have made most people quit but Andre met each of those obstacles head-on and has overcome them all on his way to becoming one of the most respected Jiu Jitsu instructors of his generation.

Early in his journey financial hardships often interfered with his training. But even as a child he was so dedicated to training that he told his mother to skip buying him gifts for his birthday and Christmas and that he would forgo new shoes and other necessities so she could pay for Jiu Jitsu. During his teen years, Andre would work to raise his own money to pay for his training. Working several odd jobs and as a messenger along the way. After quitting his job because of an extremely disrespectful employer Andre's professor asked him what he intended to do for work. Andre was contemplating working overnight delivering newspapers but his professor knew that would not be feasible. He knew Andre wouldn't be able to work overnights, go to school, and train, and knowing how dedicated Andre was to Jiu Jitsu, his professor offered him a job as an assistant instructor. Andre was told that the pay might not be what he was used to but he would be given an opportunity to learn a skill that he could use for the rest of his life. Andre took this opportunity and within few short years was running his own school.

Soon after Andre would face the biggest challenge of not only his Jiu Jitsu career but of his life. Andre began suffering from fevers and began losing weight. At first, his doctors did not know what to make of his illness but he was eventually diagnosed with tuberculosis. After several weeks in the hospital, Andre was released but he was now suffering from severe back pain. Initially, he was told it was just a symptom of his weeks of bed rest but the pain wasn't going away. His weight loss continued, he could not straighten his back, and after a series of tests, they found the tuberculosis had infiltrated Andre's spine. Andre underwent surgery to remove a benign tumor from around his spine and was given a 20% chance of walking again, much less ever practicing the martial art he loved so much.

Andre's recovery process was a long one and he was considering quitting when he began to believe he would never be able to train again. This is when his friend and mentor Master Flavio Figueiredo stepped in. When Andre told Master Flavio he was considering quitting Flavio told him that this was not the time to quit, that his students needed him and this was when he could take the time to become a great instructor and to take his Jiu Jitsu to the next level.

Andre had already begun going back to his school out of boredom but now with the motivation Master Flavio had given him he went with a renewed sense of purpose. Barely able to put on a gi and instructing from a chair Andre began teaching again. Now focusing on every detail of techniques and picking up on all the nuance within Jiu Jitsu.

Since that time Andre has fully recovered and has trained multiple world champions including 8-time world champion and the woman many believe to be the best female grappler of all time, Hannette Staack.

Along with Hannette, Andre has opened Brazil 021 Jiu Jitsu, with schools and affiliates around the globe, and has started the Brazil - 021 Project nonprofit helping kids in need using the guiding principles of the art to develop their minds, bodies, and spirits. Helping them to overcome their challenges the way he overcame his own.


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