Rener Gracie: A Pioneer in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

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When it comes to Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, there are few names that carry as much weight as Rener Gracie. As a member of the legendary Gracie family, Rener has been instrumental in popularizing the martial art around the world. He's also known for his innovative teaching methods and his work in creating the Gracie University, an online platform for learning BJJ. In this article, we'll take a closer look at Rener Gracie's life and career, and how he's made a lasting impact on the world of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.

Early Life and Training

Rener Gracie was born on November 10, 1983, in Torrance, California. He's the son of Rorion Gracie, one of the founding members of the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), and the grandson of Helio Gracie, the creator of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Rener grew up surrounded by the Gracie family's legacy and began training in BJJ at a young age. He received his black belt in 2009 from his uncle, Rorion's younger brother, Ryron Gracie.

Throughout his training, Rener focused on developing his technique and teaching skills. He spent countless hours studying and refining the techniques that his family had developed over generations, and he also worked on finding new ways to explain and teach those techniques to others. In addition to his training, Rener also earned a degree in kinesiology from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), which gave him a deeper understanding of the human body and how it moves.

The Gracie Academy and Gracie University

In 2008, Rener and his brother, Ryron, opened the Gracie Academy in Torrance, California. The academy quickly became known as one of the best places to learn Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, thanks to the Gracie family's reputation and the innovative teaching methods developed by Rener and Ryron. The academy offered both in-person classes and online training, which allowed students from all over the world to learn from the Gracie family.

However, Rener and Ryron wanted to take their teaching methods to the next level. They believed that there was a better way to teach BJJ, one that would be more effective and accessible to everyone. In 2009, they launched Gracie University, an online platform for learning Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. The platform offered a comprehensive curriculum that was broken down into easy-to-follow lessons, with detailed explanations and demonstrations of each technique. Students could learn at their own pace and track their progress through the online system.

The Gracie University was a game-changer for the world of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. It made the art more accessible to people who couldn't attend in-person classes, and it provided a structured learning experience that was easy to follow. The platform also introduced a new grading system, which allowed students to earn belts online by demonstrating their mastery of the techniques. This system has since been adopted by many other BJJ schools around the world.

Teaching and Innovation

Rener Gracie is known for his innovative teaching methods, which are focused on making Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu accessible to everyone. He's created a number of instructional videos and training programs that break down complex techniques into simple, easy-to-understand steps. He's also developed a number of new techniques and variations on traditional techniques, which have become staples of the BJJ community.

One of Rener's most popular innovations is the Gracie Combatives program, which is designed to teach BJJ to beginners in a structured and easy-to-follow manner. The program consists of 36 techniques that are essential for self-defense, and it's taught in a progressive manner that builds on each previous lesson. The program has been widely adopted by BJJ schools around the world and has helped to make the art more accessible to a wider audience.

Gracie Bullyproof

Another one of Rener's notable contributions to the world of martial arts is the Gracie Bullyproof program. This program is designed to teach children how to defend themselves against bullies using Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. The program focuses on building children's confidence, teaching them how to identify and avoid dangerous situations, and giving them the tools they need to protect themselves if necessary.

The Gracie Bullyproof program is based on Rener's personal experience with bullying. When he was in school, he was bullied by a group of older kids, and he credits BJJ with giving him the confidence and skills he needed to stand up to his bullies. The program has since been taught in schools around the world and has helped countless children to build confidence and stand up to bullies.

Legacy and Impact

Through his work with the Gracie Academy and Gracie University, as well as his innovative teaching methods and contributions to the BJJ community, Rener Gracie has made a lasting impact on the world of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. He's helped to popularize the art around the world, making it more accessible to people who might not have had the opportunity to learn it otherwise. He's also developed new techniques and training methods that have become staples of the BJJ community and have helped to make the art more effective and accessible to everyone.

Rener's legacy extends beyond just the world of martial arts. His work with the Gracie Bullyproof program has helped countless children to build confidence and stand up to bullies, and his commitment to making BJJ accessible to everyone has had a profound impact on the lives of his students and followers. He's truly a pioneer in the world of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, and his contributions will continue to be felt for generations to come.


  • https://www.gracieuniversity.com/pages/about-us
  • https://www.gracieacademy.com/pages/our-story
  • https://www.bjjheroes.com/bjj-fighters/rener-gracie
  • https://www.gracieuniversity.com/pages/bullyproof
  • https://www.jiujitsutimes.com/rener-gracie-gracie-university-and-the-future-of-bjj/

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