Only a select few of black belts (around 40) will ever have the honor of reaching the rank of Coral Belt. After a lifetime of training Jiu-Jitsu (50+ years), the Grandson of the inventors of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Renzo Gracie, has joined the group. The Coral Belt is a 7th degree black belt awarded to those who have been active black belts for over 30 years. Renzo received his Coral Belt yesterday on 18th January from his uncle Rickson Gracie at a ceremony held in Abu Dhabi.
Renzo Gracie’s BJJ and MMA Background
Renzo is a huge social media personality and is one of the more well-known Gracies due to both his social media presence and long list of accomplishments. Renzo is the founder and head coach at Renzo Gracie Academy in New York, an academy that has been represented by many jiu jitsu greats such as: John Danaher, the Ryan brothers, Garry Tonon and Craig Jones.
The 55-year-old was an active competitor in his youth, coming out as a two-time ADCC World Champion (1998, 2000). Not only was he smashing the submission grappling scene, but he was also a well-known MMA fighter for almost three decades, starting his professional career back in 1992. During his time as a pro MMA fighter, Renzo went on to fight for PRIDE, ONE Championship and the UFC, and finished his career with a 14-7-1 professional record.
He shared the news on his Instagram with a quote from his grandfather:
@renzograciebjj : “Be big enough so you can feel unsatisfied, be noble enough so you can feel anger, be strong enough so you can feel fear, and be happy enough so you can feel frustrations. – Carlos Gracie.”
Renzo’s commitment to martial arts clearly hasn’t gone unnoticed, and now he is a part of a very small group that have shown way beyond the dedication of everyone else in the sport. Congratulations on your promotion Renzo. An incredible accomplishment.