My Capoeira name is Amigao, I'm 41 and have been attending Sinha Bahia Gold Coast (now Kadara) Capoeira for almost 2 years under the excellent instruction of Graduado (Now Monitor) Tamandua.
My son Mico (9) started capoeira a few weeks before I did. I had always wanted to do a martial art that was more than just fighting and was looking for a release from the stress of work and definitely needed to lose weight, I was well over 100kg! Capoeira has fit the bill perfectly giving me all that I was looking for combining fitness and martial arts with music, history and comradery.
My first class was the hardest. For a week after I was sore, everything hurt, but I kept turning up three times a week with my son. Even though it hurt physically, after a while my mind began to wake up and I began to see dramatic improvements in my mobility. I also loved seeing the enjoyment Mico was getting out of training and the people we met there were definitely worth turning up to train with.
In no time I had lost 10kg! I didn't change anything in my life other than turning up and training capoeira. I began to see improvement in many areas of my life. My health, mind and body all responded in a way that I had never expected in such a short time. Seeing my improvement my daughter Elastica (11) joined as well and now capoeira is a family event! I really feel privileged to share this with my kids, it gives us all something in common and we each benefit from it in our own ways.
I've now lost up to 30kg and have put on abut 5kg in muscle. I feel younger than I did 10 years ago and have more focus and drive in life outside of capoeira. I'm closer to my kids, have control and confidence as well as learning some awesome tricks. Capoeira has given me skills that I didn't think were possible at my age to learn and a group of friends we regard as our Capoeira family.
Capoeira for me, is the martial art with soul!
*Aluno/Aluna=Student in Brazilian Portuguese
Aluno Bryce Allen, 24 years old
"Two and a half years I've been playing capoeira here under Monitor Tamandua. Through his teachings I have grown to use my body in ways I never new possible, to be light and graceful but also powerful and deadly. Capoeira is soo much more: it breaths history, musical origins, slavey to freedom, it Teaches patience, humility and gentleness, and when to be fierce and bold. It has been a blessing to be a small part of Kadara Capoeira. Axe"
Aluna Leah Foley (Trains also with daughter Dana, 15)
"At uni, I tried Capoeira & gave up after the first class - it was too intimidating & the instruction was lacking. 15 years later, I decided to give it another go with Kadara Capoeira Gold Coast and haven't stopped since. I've experienced my body doing things I could only imagine possible - this is greatly due to the clear, patient & supportive instruction we receive. Everything is broken down into simple steps - even the kids in class get it. The atmosphere is friendly, you learn so much and you want to go back every week!"
Aluno Daniel Lew
"It's the most fun and one of the most powerful martial art known to man yet still very underestimated by many, I'm hooked, I'm addicted and Phellipe is an incredible teacher."
Aluna Anthea Jackson, 22 years old
"I have been training Capoeira for over 2 years and still love it as much as when I first started. After school I took a break from sport to work full time but after a couple of years I really wanted to get back into something active. After contemplating going back to dance I didn't want the pressure or competitiveness that I had to deal with for years doing Calisthenics. At Kadara Capoeira Gold Coast what I loved most was the friendly atmosphere, the ability to walk into a room and not be judged. I was allowed to train at my own pace and teacher Monitor Tamandua was very patient and understanding. Having been coached in the past by teachers who would rival someone part of the Nazi Party, it was refreshing to be allowed to develop and grow in my own time. Tamandua is very talented and also great with people. He doesn't just teach great moves, but also great life lessons. I look forward to what the future brings at Kadara Capoeira Gold Coast."
Aluno Marwan Fikrat, 20 years old
"I joined Kadara Capoeira in hopes of learning acrobatics. The moment I walked into class everyone was so welcoming. A few weeks in and I realised that I had fallen in love with the kicks and the music. Capoeira felt so much more then just a "martial art". I have troubles sleeping at night after class because I just can't stop thinking about Capoeira and the wonderful people there. Graduado Tamadua never hesitated to help with anything I asked for, neither have the older students. Capoeira truly feeds the soul, Capoeira is freedom. I now have something to look forward to every morning that I open my eyes."
Felicity Vella (Mother of Aluno Dylan, 11 years old)
"Capoeira has changed my son Dylan’s life & his outlook. Capoeira beats all the other dance/drama/martial arts classes, we tried hands down. Possibly the best thing from a mum perspective is the wonderful, welcoming, developmental environment. No one is too big or too small to succeed here. Not only is Capoeira's acrobatics highly fashionable and frequently featuring in todays international music videos and action movies!!!!! It is also culturally, musically and historically diverse. Whilst teaching the principals of ‘respect’, which are sadly lacking in todays society. I have watched Phillipe Tamandua Mello’s class sizes double in the last 18mnths due to his students excitement, sheer enthusiasm and word of mouth, not marketing & advertising.
Lesson’s run several times a week, so it’s easy too see improvements quickly. Uniforms & lessons are affordable, in this economic climate! Centrally based in the Gold Coast and easy to get too. It’s hot, sweaty, social and sculpting some of the fittest bodies and minds the Gold Coast has ever seen!!!!!"
The Edwards Family (Corey, Kym and Children Dylan, 9 and Jenna, 6)
"My son Dylan (9) started Capoeira almost 12 months ago, he was looking for something in between soccer seasons. Since then, my daughter, my wife and now myself all play Capoeira! Initially we were worried watching the speed and intensity of the other mature students whom our son was training with but we soon learned the compassion and care the entire Capoeira family shows to everyone – from the big to the small, the young to the old. Monitor Tamandua teaches respect and to value every person as they all have something to offer. We have watched our son’s confidence, not to mention his strength, grow every week. The music, the people and the moves are so contagious we couldn’t stop our daughter (6) from joining in too, watching the way both our children have grown and been embraced by the Capoeira family, my wife and I are now also training – all together. It is unbelievable how Monitor Tamandua can teach you to do things you thought your body was not capable of, it’s all about technique."
Aluno Nathan Cooper, 24 years old
"Capoeira has shown me so much more than I ever expected. Not having any martial art experience before commencing I was nervous at how I would cope with a lot of the movements. Now I look back and I see how much I have progressed not just in ability, but in flexibility, strength, music, patience and even courage. Before capoeira I would never imagine I could do some of the things I can do now and that isn't just a testament to my ability, but to teacher Tamandua. He uses impeccable teaching techniques that show fast results without injuries. The atmosphere at class is fantastic and the comradery amongst students couldn't be beaten. Come check it out!"
Aluna Louisa Porter (Trains with children, Paris 9 and Chase 6)
"Both my kids and myself started Capoeira just over a year ago as we thought it would be a non-contact martial art to complement the kids gymnastics. Since joining we have found that it is far more than a martial art, it is a rounded environment where we get exposed to all the facets of Capoeira including culture, singing and instruments. Since joining we have all felt part of the Capoeira family and all enjoy its friendly and inclusive environment where more experienced students take the time to work with others and a respect and discipline is built and fostered between students and teachers. We now train three times a week and we love the physical acrobatics, the energy of the group, the musicality and the atmosphere Monitor Tamandua has created – he is an amazing teacher and has huge respect from all of us."
Aluno Alex Davidson, 21 years old
"Capoeira has been an integral part of my life for roughly the last 5 years, it has allowed me to branch out not only in a cultural and physical sense but also a large part is to do with socialization and confidence building. These classes have been, in a nutshell: “Life Changing” I have made new friends, I have become stronger, more flexible and just way more confident in whom I am as a person.
All this is due a split second decision I made one day when I was working as a trolley collector when I was 16 years old at my local shopping center. I saw Graduado ( now Instrutor ) Tamandua and one of his fellow capoeiristas in uniform walking along and I immediately recognized the uniform and belts they were wearing due to my lifelong fascination with everything martial arts related and I knew that this opportunity probably wouldn't come around again anytime soon. So I made the decision to ask him where they trained and when. The very next day a class was on I made my way over and from that day on I was hooked. It was definitely one of the best decisions I've ever made and I can say my life has gotten exponentially better thanks to that choice."
Aluna Lucy Briggs (Trains with son Asher, 5)
Batizado Testimonial 2015
"I would like to say a massive thank you to Monitor Tamandua Phellipe Mello and Anthea Jackson. You two are amazing and I can't thank you enough for all you have done for Asher and I. Kadara Capoeira has been life changing. Giving us a wonderful, supportive community and pushing us to grow and learn as humans in a safe and guiding environment.The Batizado on Saturday was a huge success and I thank everyone who was involved. Asher and I now have our first cordas because of all of you. Kadara Capoeira family, YOU ROCK!"
*Students ages taken at time of testimonial - many of these students are still with us!
Amigao two years ago before starting capoeira training
Amigao, Mico and Elastica. Nearly two years after starting capoeira training
Amigao (on the left) in 2015 during a display