Michel Almeida took up judo for a very simple reason: all his friends were doing it! He was seven years old then, and he had to wait for six more months before he turned eight and could join in on practice, instead of just watching from the sidelines.
Twenty years later, in 2000, he became the Under 73 kg European champion, wearing Portugal’s colours.
Training young judokas has been a passion and a commitment since he was 16, and in 2005, he made it his career: he became Portugal’s national coach. He stayed at the helm of the Portuguese men’s team up until 2015.
As a coach, he has led his protégés to no fewer than eight European titles, as well as a World title.
Almeida, who has a sports science degree from Lisbon University, joined Judo Canada in May 2015.
© 2017 Canadian Kodokan Black Belt Association, All rights reserved