Jiu-Jitsu, “the gentle art” can be traced back to India, where it was practiced by Buddhist Monks. Jiu-Jitsu spread across the Far East, finally arriving in Japan where it developed and gained further popularity.
Esai Maeda Koma, also known as “Conde Koma,” was a Jiu-Jitsu master who emigrated to Brazil. There he found Carlos Gracie, a frail fifteen year old. After 10 years of training, Carlos Gracie opened the first school, known as the “Academia Gracie de Jiu Jitsu.” in 1925, Carlos shared his knowledge with his brothers, adapting and refining the techniques to the naturally weaker characteristics of his family. With a goal of proving Jiu-Jitsu’s superiority as well as to build a family tradition, Carlos challenged the greatest fighters of his time, as well as managing the fighting careers of his brothers. Fighting opponents fifty or sixty pounds heavier, the Gracies quickly gained recognition and prestige.