St Anne and All Saints, Miles Street, South Lambeth, London, United Kingdom
Leo was born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. He is an experienced Vale Tudo and MMA fighter and 4-Time World Brazilian Ju Jitsu champion. Leo learned Ju Jitsu to further his Vale Tudo, – a very aggressive no-holds barred system, Vale Tudo translates as “anything goes” – so he is very aware of how Ju Jitsu needs to be adopted for the demands of reality.
Stewart McGill started training with Leo in BJJ in 2006 as Leo is the best out there for the Ground Game. It became clear to him that somebody with Leo’s experience, teaching skills and applied intelligence regarding the whole business of fighting, not just the Ground Game would be crucial for the development of the new system of Urban Krav Maga and Leo is an integral part of the organisation.
He started to train at Carlson Gracie’s academy in 1993 together with Murillo Bustamante, Amauri Bitteti, Mario Sperry, Vitor Belfort and others. At this time Carlson Gracie himself was the coach for Leo Negao and these aforementioned fighters.
In 1998 he moved to Sao Paulo and started to train at Alliance Academy together with Fabio Gurgel, Alexandre Paiva and Romero “Jacaré” Cavalcanti. In 2002, Leo Negao trained with Vitor Belfort and Antoñio ‘Minotauro’ Nogueira to develop his striking techniques and to help them develop, their Ju Jitsu. Thereafter, Leo Negao moved to Sweden and opened BJJ and MMA schools around Europe. 4 times World BJJ Champion National BJJ Champion 97,98,99 Estadual Champion 97,98,99,2000 Beat Ricardo Arona. (8x Pride Champion) at the BJJ Championship in Brazil (2001) ADCC 2nd place Brazilian Trials 1st place Roma Submission Wrestling. 10K Grapling finalist with wins over Jeff Monson and Ricardo Arona
Stewart McGill, Senior Instructor with the British Combat Association and Urban Krav Maga. Previously a 3rd Dan in Goju Ryu karate, Civilian/Law Enforcement Instructor with the IKMF. As well as having been an Instructor with the International Krav Maga Federation, I’ve trained with the Israel Krav Maga Association in Israel.
I was earmarked by my Goju Ryu instructor to take over the running of the club; he had been trained by Yamaguchi Hanshi who was trained by the famous Miyagi, founder of the style and one of the most revered figures in the history of the Okinawan/Japanese martial arts. Consequently, I’m proud of my lineage in this style and although we now train very differently, this solid background in the traditional arts that both Leo Negao (my Co-Chief Instructor, see below) and I enjoy has strongly informed the way we have developed our system.
Some of the good stuff in traditional martial arts has been misinterpreted and/or obscured over the years and needs adapting to reality. And too many martial arts focus on a variation of `one-to-one fighting in a ring between people of equal weights.
That’s why I teach people need no-frills, effective self–defence techniques that can be learned quickly and are clearly applicable to real situations and that don’t require levels of strength, fitness and flexibility to which only professional sports people can aspire. I recently did a one-day seminar for a group of Street Crime Wardens in Camden Town, see this quote from the ex-paratrooper that manages them: “Stewart created a training programme specifically for my team, covering a multitude of techniques and scenarios from empty hand attacks through to short barrelled weapon and knife defences. The techniques were easily retained by the team, the majority of whom had never studied anything like Krav Maga, and it is testimony to both the system and Stewart’s excellent instructional technique that all the team were able to retain and employ what was taught.”
Although I take the business of self-defence very seriously, I think it’s vitally important that classes are enjoyable and that students look forward to going to them rather than see them as a chore.
This way they keep on coming back to learn stuff. I’ve been to too many grindingly dour, humourless classes in the past and don’t want to put my people through the same. Urban Krav Maga is comprehensive, regularly reviewed and upgraded, based around the principles of leverage and it works.