The Life Changing Benefits of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu

Benefits of Gracie Jiu-Jitsu (Gracie)

The Benefits of Gracie Jiu-Jitsu: A Brief History

The history of Gracie Jiu-Jitsu goes back to the early 1900’s when a young man named Helio Graciano was training under his father, Carlos. After two years, Carlos decided it was time to retire from fighting and teach his son the art of jiu-jitsu. His son was very much against the idea at first, but after some persuasion he agreed to try it out.

Helio learned the basics of jiu-jitsu from his father and continued practicing it with his brothers. Eventually he won several tournaments and became known as “the Gracie Hunter”. He eventually retired from competition due to injuries, but kept teaching his son.

In 1949 Carlos passed away suddenly leaving Helio as sole heir to the family business. Helio took over the company and began to expand into other martial arts such as judo and karate.

Over the next few decades, the company grew rapidly until it reached its peak in 1970 when it had become one of the largest companies in Brazil. However, during this period there were many problems within the company. Many competitors entered the market which hurt sales drastically.

Also, Helio suffered a heart attack while driving home from work one day and died shortly thereafter. With no one to take over, the company nearly shut down.

Helio’s oldest son, Rorion, offered to take over the company, but he had little interest in running a business and soon moved to America to pursue his dream of becoming an actor. Some believed that the company should be dissolved since the Gracie name was still legendary and could still provide income without competition from a company that no longer had any value.

However, Rorion’s younger brother, Royce had a different idea. He believed that the company could still be saved with a major investment of time and money. He saw this as an opportunity to prove his worth and took over as owner and head of the company.

He first started by changing the name from “Carlos” to “Gracie Jiu-Jitsu”. Then, he began to work his employees nearly to death while he searched for a way to save the company.

Finally, in 1995 he saw an article about a no-holds-barred fighting event called “The Ultimate Fighting Championship.” He knew immediately that this was his opportunity.

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His idea was to send his most talented fighter there and show the world the power of Gracie Jiu-Jitsu by defeating all comers. The only problem was that he had very few talented fighters to choose from at the time.

The Ultimate Fighting Championship aired and his employee’s lost badly to much larger fighters. He needed a new plan. This led him to hire a professional boxer by the name of “Tank” to teach classes at the gym and to begin recruiting actual fighters.

Over the next few years, while the popularity of the UFC skyrocketed, so did the popularity of the Gracies. At one point they were considered the best fight team in the world.

Other fight teams and martial arts schools tried to imitate their techniques but it all came back to basic Gracie Jiu-Jitsu. And it was all thanks to that one event that saved the family business.

Today, the company is thriving and is worth nearly a billion dollars. The children of Rorion and Royce have all taken on roles within the company.

The company has opened many new affiliate schools in America and has also sent some of it’s most talented fighters to represent the team at this year’s Ultimate Fighting Championship: a much more respectable sporting event now, with rules to make it safer for the competitors.

Your first major decision is who you want to send as your champion. Remember, the goal is to prove that your fighting style is the best there is and send other fight teams running back to the drawing board to figure out how to defeat it.

You can send either Tank or his younger brother, Zane.

Choose carefully.

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Okay son, you ready to rumble?”

“You know it, dad.”

“Then let’s go!”

The two of you step into the large cage in the middle of the arena. A mixture of cheers and boos come from the crowd surrounding the outside of it.

You’re not nervous at all though. You’ve been looking forward to this moment for a long time now. For years, people have been telling you that what you’re doing isn’t a real “sport” and that it’s disgraceful for a “real fighter” to participate in it.

Well, today is the day those people get to see a real “fighter” in action.

The ref comes over and gives you the rules while he checks your gloves and wraps your hands. Then he asks what technique you would like to use to start this match and how you would like to have it started.

Choose either knee-kick combination or elbow-stomp combination.

Then choose to have it started slow or fast.

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“Knee-kick combination, started fast.” You state.

The ref nods his head then calls both of you to the center of the ring. Once in the middle he goes over a few final rules while you and your opponent lightly bounce side to side just out of range of each other. Finally, he gives the signal and you rush forward to attack.

You start with a hard inside leg kick, which causes your opponent to already start guarding his midsection. Not wasting any time, you throw a quick jab and follow with a right cross. He’s barely able to block both.

You continue your assault with another hard inside leg kick. This time though your opponent catches your foot when you pull it back and tries to trip you. Not going out that easily, you push off his foot and land a quick two punch combination to his face.

He’s stunned by the punches but before you can press your attack he catches your next kick and now pulls you down to the mat with an leg grab takedown.

You quickly roll to avoid ending up in a worse position and end up with him finishing with his back to the floor and you in a half guard position. Your opponent tries to use his weight to pin you, but you roll out of it and stand back up. He does as well.

You decide to slow the match down and go for a clinch. While in the clinch you score a few dirty boxing points and land an elbow strike to your opponent’s face. The judge gives it a 10-9 score in favor of you for dominating the opening of the round.

The second round is more of you going for a limb attack. You attempt a few unsuccessful toe holds and armbars before trying to kick him in the face. When that doesn’t work, you try to sweep his other leg out from under him and while you succeed, he rolls through and now has side control position on you.

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He immediately takes advantage of the situation by trying to get his other leg over to mount you. You roll with it and now have side control of your own and start working your way into a full North-South position. From there, it’s a struggle to get around and get your legs behind his head.

You succeed and are awarded with a point for the takedown and now top position. The judge gives it a 10-9 in favor of you.

The third round is more or less a repeat of what happened in the second. You attempt another leg trip, which succeeds and now have side control on him again. From there you work your way into a North-South position and finally get behind him for the third time in the match.

You keep going for the same maneuver, but he rolls one time too many and you end up with his back now. You immediately take advantage of it by sinking in both your arms and squeezing as hard as you can for the submission win.

You win by Rear Naked Choke at 3:37 of the third round.

“I thought I had him in the first round, it was a close one though.” You think to yourself as you make your way back to the locker room. You feel both of your matches went better than Len’s and are confident that you’ll be moving on to fight for the championship.

When you get back to the locker room, Len immediately walks over towards you. “

How’d it go?”

He asks.

You smile and answer, “I won.”

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“That’s great!” Len says with obvious enthusiasm.

“Yeah, I’m moving on to fight for the inter-regional title.” You continue.

“Wow! That’s awesome!” He responds.

You continue to excitedly talk about the match when Coach Vaughn approaches the two of you. “I saw your match, good job out there. The both of you fought well and are moving on to fight in the inter-regional belt.” He tells you.

Sources & references used in this article:

Implicit transfer of life skills through participation in Brazilian jiu-jitsu by AE Chinkov, NL Holt – Journal of applied sport psychology, 2016 – Taylor & Francis


Services Marketing in Mixed Martial Arts, Developing Jiu Jitsu in Seoul, Korea. by CA Nelson – Journal of Marketing & Management, 2013 –

Injury in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Training by J Dutkiewicz, DC Spencer – Seeking the Senses in Physical Culture, 2017 – Routledge

Comparative analysis of the level of aggression between the women practicing judo and Brazilian jiu-jitsu by BA Petrisor, G Del Fabbro, K Madden, M Khan… – Sports …, 2019 –

Personal and social benefits associated with participation in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu by P Janowska, M Wojdat, E Bugajska… – Journal of Education …, 2018 –

The comparative analysis of the aggression level between women practicing Hip-Hop dancing and women practicing Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu by R Machado – 2002 – Action Pursuit Group

An investigation into pain threshold and tolerance differences between Brazilian Jiu Jitsu athletes and a commensurate group of high intensity training, aerobic and … by AE Chinkov – 2014 –