Gisele Bundchen is a force to be reckoned with. On Saturday, Nov. 12, the 42-year-old supermodel — who recently divorced from Tampa Bay Buccaneer’s quarterback husband, Tom Brady, 45 — was spotted out to dinner with her jiu-jitsu instructor, Joaquim Valente, 34, at Koji restaurant in Costa Rica. However, nine months before photos were published by Page Six of their casual dinner date, which included Gisele’s two children Benjamin, 12, and Vivienne, 9, she shared a video with her 20 million Instagram of the two sparring in a friendly jiu-jitsu match at the Valente family training facility in Miami, Florida.
In the caption to the video, which has gotten over 430,000 likes since it was posted in February, Gisele wrote, “I believe the more tools we have in our toolbox the better. I feel stronger, more confidence, and empowered since I started practicing self-defense. I feel it’s an important skill for all, but especially for us women. Thank you @ValenteBrothers for being awesome teachers and for making training so much fun. I am looking forward to keep improving. Let’s go!”
In the video, Gisele displayed her serious Jiu-Jitsu skills. In shot after shot, the beauty could be seen tossing Joaquim around. In one shot, she even flipped him upside down and, in another shot, she got him into a headlock. In the entire video, the two looked friendly with each other, as she was smiling and laughing while taking him down. So, who exactly is Joaquim? As HollywoodLife reported, Joaquim is a Miami-based martial arts expert that comes from a family of Jūjutsu practitioners. According to a Valente family website, he is also well-educated and is part owner of the Valente family facility in Miami, where Gisele had been living with her ex-husband since 2020.
However, Gisele’s friendship with Joaquim started before the two were captured sparring on video. In an interview with Dust magazine, Gisele revealed that Joaquim had been teaching her kids the sport before she got involved. “I have always been a seeker and curious person who always wants to dive deeper. It’s actually because of my son that I met Joaquim. I have a friend who told me about the Valente brothers and their martial art school, and since I wanted to steer my almost teenage son in the right direction, I thought he might be interested in it,” Gisele said in the interview with Dust.
She added, “Initially, I wasn’t even considering it for myself, to be honest with you. But, when I bought [Ben] into the first class, and started talking with Joaquim, I realized it was much more than self-defense.” In the article, Gisele revealed that her daughter, Vivian, 9, also got into Jiu-Jitsu. After the photos of Gisele and Joaquim went viral, E! news reported that the two were not dating. “Any suggestion that Gisele’s relationship with Joaquim Valente is anything other than strictly platonic and professional is just ridiculous. This is not just completely false—it’s absurd,” a source told the outlet — adding that the two of them were joined by a large group of people that were seemingly cropped out of the photos. HollywoodLife reached out to a rep for Gisele regarding her dinner with Joaquim, but we have not heard back yet.
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(With Inputs from hollywoodlife)