Professor Angelica 'BJJ Iron Lady' Galvão


Full Name: Angelica Cabral Firme Galvão

Nickname: "BJJ Iron Lady"

Main Achievements:

* IBJJF World No-Gi Champion (2015)

* UAEJJF Abu Dhabi Pro Champion (2018)

* IBJJF World Champion (2014 brown, 2011 purple)

* IBJJF Pans Champion (2018 black, 2014/2013 brown, 2012 purple)

* IBJJF European Open Champion (2015)

* USBJJF/IBJJF American Nationals Champion (2013 brown)

* IBJJF Seattle International Open Champion (2015**)

* IBJJF Dallas International Open Champion (2015**)

* IBJJF Pans Championship 2nd Place (2015)

* USBJJF/IBJJF American Nationals 2nd Place (2013* brown)

* IBJJF World Championship 3rd Place (2015 black, 2012 brown)

Favourite Position/Technique: Open Guard

Weight Division: Peso Leve (64,00 kg / 141.5 lbs)

Team/Association: Atos Academy


Angelica Galvão is a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt as well as one of the top grappling competitors of her generation, a reputation she earned by conquering important titles in tournaments such as the International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation’s (IBJJF) World, World No-Gi, Pan American, European Open and American Nationals. 

Angelica Galvão was born on 21 May 1986, in Ubatuba – a coastal municipality in Brazil’s São Paulo state where she began her sporting career playing volleyball and basketball for her school.

Angelica was captivated by Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu after seeing a local tournament in 2003 where her future husband, André Galvão was competing. Although the two did not meet on that occasion, the sporting facet of this martial art captured Angelica’s interest and she quickly signed on to Ales, Alessandro de Souza’s academy.

In 2004, Angélica competed as a Blue Belt fighter in Rio de Janeiro. This is where Angelica and André finally met for the first time. They married in early 2005, after 17 months together.

Angelica took a short break in 2006 when she gave birth to her daughter (Sarah Galvão), earning her purple belt in the process, but never truly committed or followed through with her training. This changed in 2011 after Angelica settled in the United States of America – where she moved to on November 2010 to help André launch Atos HQ in San Diego, California. Angelica was reluctant to restart her training at the time, but was incentivized by her husband and became the first contact for new female students at the gym. This quickly grew into a stronger sentiment as she fell in love with the process once again and restarted training hard and competing. 

Angelica’s first competition as a purple belt was at the IBJJF World Jiu-Jitsu Championship in 2011. A tournament she won. The following year Galvão won the Pan American title and her promotion to brown belt.

Being the wife of a multiple-time ADCC and World champion did not make Angelica’s rise to black belt any easier. She spent over 2 years in the brown belt division, winning two Pans titles, one US national title, one silver medal at the ‘Mundial’ (2013) and finally the world title she had worked for in 2014 followed by her promotion.

An essential member of the Atos San Diego Headquarters since its inception, after earning her black belt Angelica’s duties at the academy were elevated. She took charge of the female-only classes at the gym in 2014. Her success as an athlete trickled down to her students who also picked up important medals in the jiu-jitsu sporting circuit.


"If you have a dream, go chase it. You will never know if you never try. The NO is already granted, the YES must be chased. It is not easy, but it is possible."

"Life is made of sacrifices. Nothing is given, all is earned. But sacrifices will only come when you have priorities."

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