Sarah Souza: From Adversity to Double Gold at National Jiu-Jitsu Championships!

Few stories resonate as powerfully as Sarah Souza’s Stoy in martial arts, where discipline meets determination. A young prodigy from Albuquerque, Sarah’s journey through Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is a tale of athletic prowess and a profound narrative of overcoming adversity.

At 14, she turned personal challenges into championship gold, capturing two national titles at the prestigious 2024 International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation American Nationals in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Sarah’s exceptional skills earned her gold medals in the gi and no-gi divisions, proving her dominance in this martial art.

Fresh off her victories, Sarah is now poised to chase her next dream: securing a world championship title in Kissimmee, Florida.

Her ambition is fueled by a previous podium finish—third place at last year’s world championships.

Sarah’s journey in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu started at the tender age of nine.

Now competing in the heavyweight division of her age group as an orange belt—a rank signaling advanced proficiency—she finds a powerful outlet for both physical activity and emotional release in Jiu-Jitsu.

Jiu-Jitsu is where I turn to take a deep breath or channel my energy positively,” she explains. It’s not just about self-defense; it keeps me physically and mentally strong.

Trained rigorously by her stepfather, Daniel Souza, a respected sixth-degree black belt, Sarah undergoes intensive three-hour sessions six days a week at the Carlson Gracie Coyote Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Academy.

Daniel’s mentorship extends beyond physical training. It enhances Sarah’s self-confidence and positively impacts her academic and social life.

After relocating to Albuquerque with her mother, Gabriela, Sarah found solace in Jiu-Jitsu, which provided her with a sense of security and a strong sense of self.

Her goal is to achieve a black belt, pursue veterinary science, and coach Jiu-Jitsu to inspire others by showing how adversity can be transformed into strength and success.

Sarah Souza’s journey from personal hardship to national champion in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu embodies the power of resilience. Her story teaches us that adversity can be a powerful motivator for achievement.


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