1975, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Manoel and Cleuza get married and have no idea that from this day on they would begin a family of fighters, not only in life but also on the mats.
Leonardo is born surrounded of all reasonable care and joy to the arrival of the first child. Later Leonardo would become "Leozinho", nickname given to him because his was very young when he started training Brazilian jiu-jitsu. Leozinho was definitely born to be successful on sports: he's that kind of people that learn quickly and easily and is capable to defeat even veterans on his first matches. Besides being a world famous black belt he's an awesome soccer and tennis player, bowler and golfer.
The Vieira family gets bigger with Ricardo's arrival, the over-protective. One more boy to compose this traditional family which at that time lived in Ipanema, one of the most famous neighborhoods of Rio de Janeiro. Although they lived in a such expensive square meter they were very different from the common families at the neighborhood: they were not part of the upper middle class but shared a small one bedroom apartment that, despite its size, was home of a lot of love, respect, great concepts of life and family, a good dose of educations and many limits.
In this year was born Leandro, the youngest, but definitely not the smaller: he differs from the two older brothers for being almost 6'0 tall and probably having a heart much bigger than himself. Leandro is the funniest and the most rushed of the three: his son, Felipe, was born when he was only 21 years old and was also an early beginner in jiu-jitsu, which he began practicing with only 6 years old.
The jiu-jitsu became part of this family because Manoel has always been a martial arts fan, especially kung-fu and karate. In 1986, when determined that the three boys should have an extra activity that would keep them busy as long as possible after school, he enrolled them in his friend's academy: Romero Cavalcanti "Jacaré". What he did not know is that the art which was taught in that school was the "gentle art", the meaning of jiu-jitsu in English. He was surprised to discover that a few months later but certainly do not regret his choice.
Romero "Jacaré" is a separate chapter in the history of this family: the Vieira brother's master is a black belt from Rolls Gracie and third-degree line descendant of Conde Koma's pure jiu-jitsu. We are speaking about the purest art here, direct from the source.
As the years passed, some teams passed also: Alliance, Brasa and, nowadays, Checkmat. In over 24 years some big names have already been their students or training fellows: Demian Maia (current UFC fighter), Rodrigo Medeiros "Comprido" (Brock Lesnar's BJJ coach), André Galvão (current Strikeforce fighter), Rafael and Guilherme Mendes (new talent and world champions), Robert Drysdale (ADCC champion, etc.) and any more.
After winning many battles in all fields of life nowadays the three brothers can offer a better life for their families and look back with pride to a glorious professional past: Leonardo is 2x ADCC champion, Ricardo is 9x world champion and Leandro is 1x brazilian champion.
Leonardo is 34 now, has two children and is responsible for managing the team in the state of São Paulo. Ricardo has completed 31 years, has a son and heads the training in Rio de Janeiro. Leandro is a 29 year old father of one son and share the tasks between the two states to make the team even better and forming more and more national and international champions.
Checkmat has actually a few academies around the world: Brasil, USA, Malasya, Sweden, Denmark, England, Japan, China, Korea.