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#35 Rolles Gracie

As a member of the first family of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Rolles Gracie was practically born on the mats. When asked of his first recollection of Jiu Jitsu, Rolles responded, "that is like asking someone if they remember their first meal".

The grandson of Carlos Gracie and son of Rolls, Rolles grew up surrounded by people now considered BJJ legends. His father was arguably one of the greatest BJJ practitioners but tragically passed away shortly before Rolles's fourth birthday. Raised by his mother, who Rolles said had a fighter's spirit, and taken under the wing of his uncle Rilion, Rolles trained on and off until his teenage years. That is when he made the decision to become a fighter and make a living teaching BJJ. Rolles's friends and mother discouraged him from becoming a fighter, urging him instead to continue his education and have a more stable profession, but Rolles would hear none of it. While his friends grew up worshiping comic book superheroes, Rolles felt his uncles and cousins were real life superheroes and he wanted to be a fighter, just like them.

In 1996 Rolles moved in with his uncle Rilion and within six months was a Pan American BJJ Champ. Between 1998 and the early 2000's, Rolles was moving around Brazil and the US, training various different martial arts to round out his fighting game and continuing to compete. Rolles took state Judo championships in Florida and continued training BJJ in Brazil. In 2004 he moved back to the US and began training and teaching at his cousin Renzo's academy in NYC.

In 2007, Rolles made his MMA debut and amassed a professional record of 8 wins, 4 losses. Rolles fought for several organizations, most notably the IFL, Once FC, and the UFC. Simultaneously, he continued competing in BJJ, winning several national, international, and world titles.

Today, Rolles continues teaching BJJ for his cousin at Renzo Gracie's academies. He is also passing on his vast martial arts knowledge at his very own school, Rolles Gracie Academy in Old Bridge, New Jersey. There he is teaching a new generation of students to reach their goals and dreams with the same passion it took for Rolles to meet his own.


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