Jiu-Jitsu began many years ago in India. Buddhist monks, during long distance travels, had to defend themselves against thieves oftenly. It is then that they created a non violent fighting style giving birth to JIU-JITSU. Its essence was the spirit of self-defense. It is the application of laws of physics such as the lever, moment of forces, balance, center of gravity and the minute study of the vital centers of the body that made JIU-JITSU a scientific art of fighting. As time went by, JIU-JITSU began to migrate to other countries and arrived in Ceylon, Birmania, Tibet, Cyan, South East Asia and finally Japan(BC). In Japan, It grew, developed and was named “Suave Art” and the “kimono”was invented. Its principles involved self-defense with minimal force, which allowed the weakest individuals to defend themselves against physically stronger adversaries.
Jiu-Jitsu was introduced in Brazil in1917 with the arrival of world champion Eisei Mitsuyo Maeda, known as Count Koma. In Belem, a city in the state of Pará in Brazil, Count Koma taught Jiu-Jitsu to Carlos Gracie who later trained his younger brothers Oswaldo, Gastao, George and Helio. Helio, the youngest, stood out the most, despite his 62kgs(140lbs) he defeated countless opponents much heavier (sometimes double his weight), of different fighting styles like Capoeira, Greek-Roman Wrestling, Boxing, Judo, Karate etc… Helio adapted the Jiu-Jitsu techniques making it easier for weaker people to fight against stonger people, creating the Gracie Jiu-Jitsu style and being considered the father of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Later the Gracie family moved to downtown Rio (Centro) and constructed a very big academy at Avenida Rio Branco 151, 17th and 18th floor, and from then on the Gracies always disputed “Vale Tudos” (no rules fighting) having a victorious career. In 1991, the Gracie academy moved again, into the Vasco da Gamma Club, in Lagoa, and in 1985 moved to the Padre Antonio Vieira School where it remains until present.
A Message from Master Helio Gracie:
“The Jiu-Jitsu that I created, was to give chances for weaker people to defend themselves from stronger people. This martial art became of such success that a Jiu-Jitsu for competition was created. I would like to make clear the I am in favor of practicing sports, as well as studying martial art techniques, in any style, as well as a good nutrition, sexual control and abstaining habits that may harm ones health. The problem is the creation of a Jiu-Jitsu style for competition with rules and inadequate bout times which favors the more trained, stonger and heavier practitioners. The goal of Jiu-Jitsu , is mainly, to benefit the weaker. My Jiu-Jitsu is an art of atodefense that does not accept certain rules and determined timing in bouts. These are the reasons for which I can’t, with my presence, promote events, which results in a anti Jiu-Jitsu.” _ Helio Gracie