Any time Gabi Garcia is even mentioned on the internet, an onslaught of negative comments is sure to follow. Garcia is regularly mocked for her size and appearance, and while some of her haters claim that they only talk smack on her because she’s previously tested positive for banned substances, other athletes who have also failed banned substance tests are rarely the targets of the same vitriol.
Garcia, of course, is aware of the amount of trolling that she receives, but if she’s bothered by it, you’d never be able to tell by her performance on the mats. A multiple-time ADCC champion, Garcia has once again returned to competing in BJJ after taking a couple of years off to focus on her MMA career. At this year’s ADCC, Garcia was laser-focused on gold having won her first match in the quarter-finals, then the semifinals, and finally winning her fourth ADCC gold medal when the weekend was done.
Of course, the naysayers who have the courage to hate on Garcia from the comfort of their keyboard are nowhere to be found at ADCC itself. Instead, Garcia is swarmed by fans — dads asking for selfies, little girls asking for hugs, casual BJJ practitioners just wanting to pass on their congratulations. For as many haters as she has, Garcia has just as many admirers, and when she speaks, it’s clear that she has too much positivity in her heart to let the negativity bring her down.
Garcia took some time with us on Saturday to discuss her first match, her approach to the haters, and her advice to other women competing in the upper weight classes of BJJ competitions. Take a look: