Renzo Gracie - The Master from Brazil
Renzo Gracie is the kind of guy you would like to have as a neighbor; kind, friendly, generous and always full of great jujitsu techniques. He is a master instructor, fighter, and entertainer, quick on his feet, quick on the ground and quick with a witty remark.
With Renzo at Karate College
I trained with for four summers at Karate College in Virginia. His approach was to take just three or four techniques for an hour lesson and work on them until everyone got them down pat. Training with such an expert was a truly great experience.
On occasion he brought some of his BJJ students with him; tough guys. Renzo was strict with ranks and only awarded belts to those who really deserved them. He also had an amazing ability to remember students from year to year.
He has a wonderful sense of humor, once his phone went off, a little embarrassing, and he says, "It's my wife, she doesn't believe me, I tell her I am at a seminar." He noticed me meticulously taking notes and said, "Save a copy for me, I may want to do another book."
His techniques were amazing, but more than anything I enjoyed his happy, positive and friendly disposition. I also had the opportunity to train with his cousin Rodrigo, in New York. When I told Renzo, he said, "Yeah, but I am better looking!" You gotta love him.