History of Gracie Barra
Professor Carlos Gracie Jr. is the founder and head instructor of the Gracie Barra Academy, the largest Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu school in the world, located in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The son of Carlos Gracie, the pioneer of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Carlos Gracie Jr., has produced well over 200 black belts in his tenure, which today includes numerous world class instructors and athletes.
At the heart of the Gracie Barra mission statement is the goal of training both the body and spirit, going beyond the 'winning-losing' or 'contest' philosophy present in other martial arts. Instead, Professor Carlos Gracie Jr. emphasizes the fundamental principle of Jiu-Jitsu: "Minimum effort for maximum efficiency," a method of utilizing strength through gentleness, an expression exemplifying both the mental and physical aspects of Jiu-Jitsu. In Professor Carlos' mind, Jiu-Jitsu was in fact a method of education, which could be used to foster one's personal development. Professor Carlos considered the goals of Jiu-Jitsu to revolve around three aspects: physical education, personal achievement, and ethical growth. In other words, through the practice of Jiu-Jitsu, one would complete their personal development through the training of body and mind, becoming a person better able to contribute to society and the world. Recognizing the never-ending quest for self-perfection, even today Professor Carlos continues to study these techniques and principles with his students. The constant development of techniques demonstrates Professor Carlos' adherence to these principles, continuously striving for further progress and knowledge.
In spreading the values of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Professor Carlos is also the head of the IBJJF (International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation - www.ibjjf.org) the largest international organization for overseeing the growth of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. The IBJJF is the organizer of the largest competition tournaments in the world including the World Championships of Jiu-Jitsu ("Mundials"), held in Rio every July, the Pan-American Championships held in Dominguez Hills, California, the European Championships held in Portugal, also held annually. This year also marks the first Asian Championships to be held in Japan.