Relson Gracie Visits Houston Area


Houston, TX – It’s not often that one gets to learn from a legend, and if you didn’t attend the January 16, 2010 seminar put on by world renowned Jiu-Jitsu instructor Relson Gracie at American Combative Systems (ACS) in Webster, than you may have missed a great chance.  The 2 hour seminar was packed full of detailed instructions, hands on training and open forum questions and admission was only $50 per person.

About 20% of those that showed for the event were not members of the school. I found that number to be a bit shocking, as I expected to see more non-members there. When asked about what it meant having Relson Gracie pay a visit to Webster and his school, Brown Belt ACS instructor Bruce McGraw had this to say, “I think it’s really good for the school and for the city. There are a lot of Jiu-Jitsu schools in Houston, but not many in this area (Webster, TX), so it was good for the area too.”

Perhaps the highlight of the day was not what took place on the mat, but rather off. After he finished teaching, I asked Mr. Gracie if I could have a few minutes of his time to ask him a few questions. What evolved next reminded me of something one might see on a movie or TV?

It started with a lone student and me asking Mr. Gracie a few questions as he sat in a chair in the corner of the gym. One by one, students began to gather around, sitting on the floor Indian style, hanging on every word of every story that he told. For 40 minutes, Mr. Gracie sat, answering questions, telling stories and (when appropriate) demonstrating techniques relevant to the conversation.

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Rather than retype the 40 minutes interview/conversation, I thought that it would be a more enjoyable experience for our readers to get the hear the answers and the stories in Mr. Gracie’s own words and voice.

What follows is the unedited conversation I recorded during the 40 minute open discussion. Some of the topics discussed include:

  • Why he thinks Gracie Jiu-Jitsu is a superior form of Jiu-Jitsu
  • Gi Vs no Gi
  • The growth and innovation of Jiu-Jitsu
  • His opinion on the scoring of Jiu-Jitsu (including at the worlds)
  • The possibility of Jiu-Jitsu in the Olympics
  • Guards
  • Royce Gracie
  • Rickson Gracie

…and many other topics.  Click on the play button below to listen.


Also, be sure and check out the rest of the pictures from the seminar here.

Thanks again to the folks out at ACS (Drew Ratichek and Bruce McGraw) for having me out.