Jiu-Jitsu history can be traced back to India, where it was practiced by Buddhist monks many centuries ago. The monks used the art as self-defense by relying on techniques of balance and leverage without the use of weapons. With Buddhism spreading to other Asian nations, finally arriving to Japan, where it gained a lot of popularity. Jiu Jitsu is still practiced in it’s traditional form today.
Japanese Jiu-Jitsu masters would travel to other countries to teach, and compete in competitions to help spread the art of Jiu-Jitsu. Esai Maeda Koma, also known as “Conde Koma” was a master that traveled to Brazil in 1915. Conde Koma was assisted by Gastao Gracie, a Brazilian Politician, in establishing a Japanese Village in Brazil. In return for helping him Conde Koma spent 1 year teaching Gastao Gracie’s eldest son Carlos the art of Jiu-Jitsu.
Before Conde Koma had traveled from Japan, Jiu Jitsu had been protected from the outside world and was not known outside of Asia. For Carlos Gracie, learning the art from a Jiu Jitsu master was a very special opportunity. Carlos Gracie was young and athletic, so he had progressed quickly in Jiu Jitsu during the year Conde Koma had spent with him. In Jiu Jitsu, the traditions are strict and the methods of teaching do not vary from generation to the next. Conde Koma had followed this strict form of teaching, making sure that Carlos learns Jiu Jitsu in it’s purist form. Once Conde Koma left Brazil, Carlos was dedicated to the Art of Jiu Jitsu, but he was no longer confined by the many years of traditions. This opened the door to a progression of a new Jiu Jitsu.
Gracie learned the art for personal improvement and self-defense. Carlos along with his brother Helio, without being confined by many years of tradition restricting the moves and methods of study, reinvented Japanese Jiu-Jitsu into a martial art that is effective for a smaller person. This reinvention of Jiu-Jitsu has become known as Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. In 1925 Carlos moved to Rio de Janeiro where he open his own academy and began teaching and competing. Carlos would teach and prove the effectiveness of the art by defeating opponents who were physically stronger and bigger than him. Carlos also taught his philosophies of life as well as his concepts of natural nutrition. Carlos Gracie saw the art as a way to become a man who was more tolerant, respectful, and self-confident
Carlos Gracie Jr.
Son of the famous Carlos Gracie, Carlos Gracie Jr. was born with into the brand new martial art. As Carlos Gracie grew up in Rio De Janeiro, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu exploded in popularity. Many learned of Carlos Gracie and Helio Gracie finishing bigger and stronger opponents and wanted to learn the art. Carlos Gracie Jr. was the founder of Gracie Barra, one of the most famous Brazilian Jiu Jitsu schools in Rio. Gracie Barra is responsible for developing many of the the most accomplished Brazilian Jiu Jitsu competitors
Carlos Gracie Jr. established the International and National Jiu-Jitsu Federation in the early 90’s, leading the way to contributing to the growth of the sport by holding organized competitions. Currently the confederation holds competitions in Brazil, the United States, Europe and Asia. Carlos Gracie Jr. is helping to make his father Carlos’ dream come true by spreading Brazilian Jiu Jitsu through out the world.
Soca began training when he was 15 years old. Soca’s older brother, who was was a blue belt at the time,had trained at Gracie Barra. After spending many of his days surfing, Soca decided to go to his brother’s academy and give jiu-jitsu a try. After that day, Soca never wanted stop, and he began to train everyday. Soca first started training at Gracie Barra with Jean Jacques Machado. Jean Jacques showed him the most effective technique, which helped establish the foundation for Soca’s amazing Jiu-Jitsu skill. When Jean Jacques moved to the United States, Soca, a purple belt at the time, began training with Carlos Gracie Jr. at the Gracie Barra main academy. Carlos awarded Soca his black belt in 1994. Since then Soca has won many prestigious titles such as Abu Dhabi champion, Pan-Am champion, and Brazilian National Champion.
At the Gracie Barra academy Soca has trained with many world champions such as Renzo Gracie, Ralph Gracie, Roger Gracie, Roberto “Gordo” Correa, Helio “Soneca” Moreira, Vinicius “Drakulino” Magalhaes Joao “Big Head” Paulo,Romel Cardoso, Mauricio “Tinguinha” Antonio “Nino” Schembri, Roberto “Roleta,” Nelson Monteiro, Rafael “Gordinho” Correa, Marcio “Pe de Pano” Cruz, and many other champions.
Today, Soca has put all of experience to work and has dedicated himself to the Soca Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Academy.