Today in the Rickson Interview: Rickson talks about how he intends to use the JJGF to change the future world of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.
BJJ Legends: The second newsletter I wanted to talk about was "The Smart Way to Practice," was the title of that newsletter. That was also from 1999, 2000, in which you articulate the importance of, as I believe you put it, putting on the shelf your natural attributes.
Taking out your natural attributes of speed, strength, agility, whatever they may be, and instead relying on the technique, the principles of leverage, timing, these sorts of things to accomplish your objective.
Along the way, since that time, many times we've also heard you talk about how important in particular, I believe, that the goal here with the JJGF is to create an opportunity and a way, a means, for people to make Jiu-Jitsu matter in their personal lives.
How do you intend on using what you've learned in life and the principles that you've attained to use a JJGF to communicate to the world and to get those who have been in a different mindset about how Jiu-Jitsu should be to change their thinking?
Rickson Gracie: I think all those topics are very interesting, and all those are relevant for the community, for the instructor, for the fighter. I think just the education, just to banging in a more complex way, the beauty of doing business in 2014 is today, we can click a button here and can be here and listen by the whole entire world.
So through this platform, I think the reach is much bigger. The results can be much more positive. So it's the same ideas of how this can fulfill people's needs, but in a more established different structure to be able to express this in the four corners of the Earth.
So I think that's pretty much it. Just keep banging and keep talking. Make people... Because my intention is not to feed and educate people who already have bad things in their heads and this. So no, I don't want to affiliate. No, this is end. No, this is not true Jiu-Jitsu. The guys who already have their opinions, those are maybe hard to convince. I don't care.
What I'm really into is to try to give a good reference for at least 85% of the Jiu-Jitsu competitive community today, who's the white belts and blue belts. Those guys may misled to a different direction, to being very effective and making [inaudible:00:30:49] and losing effectiveness in life.
So the efficiency has to be replaced by effectiveness. In that way, I feel like in any process, educational process, I cannot expect everybody to jump in my boat today or this year. But based on the information, based on the questions, those curious students who make for their own teachers, based on their evaluation, based on observing this kind of set of rules and this kind of set of rules, I want to be a champion here or here.
So this will progressively bring in the truth to our tradition, to our Jiu-Jitsu. That truth, once in view... People are going to start to say, "Okay. I want to be a full instructor. I don't want to just be an instructor who teaches berimbolo 50/50. I want to be capable to have many."
So as this becomes more on the table in a kind of daily basis, conversations and arguments, about rules, about effectiveness, about this and that, this will bring a revolution in terms of how people want to direct themselves and their kids. What's the kind of program you want to give your kid to learn in school, I mean the Jiu-Jitsu academy?
These who have a solid program... Eventually the parents are going to say, "Okay. I want to go in Jiu-Jitsu school, but let's look for a certified one," because I make sure the programs are there. The kid will learn everything from respect, discipline, techniques. So I want to make my kid go.
So eventually we try to stamp as a quality product. We don't want to create new academies. I want to use your academy, his academy, in order to promote our culture. So by validating those elements, we're creating a new culture, or not new, but we're bringing back to restore our essential culture.
Today in the Rickson Interview: We talk to Rickson about how his thinking has evolved over the past two decades.
BJJ Legends: I want to move this conversation a little bit, directed towards something a little bit from the past, but it speaks to where we are now, where you are now specifically, and where the Jiu-Jitsu Global Federation is.
Back in 1999, the Hicks and Gracie International Jiu-Jitsu Association, in the late '90s, you had some newsletters roughly every quarter or every half. There were two that were particularly interesting to me. One was entitled "The Two Common Paths of Jiu-Jitsu." Do you remember this at all? It was a long time.
Rickson Gracie: Not exactly.
BJJ Legends: Trust me. It's still the same things you're talking about today, which is encouraging. There's consistency there. The other one was "The Smart Way to Practice." I want to draw our attention to "The Two Common Paths of Jiu-Jitsu." The two common paths, fundamentally, were competition and non-competition.
You encouraged the community, at that time, to be mindful that there were elements of our community that had preferred to compete and elements that weren't there to compete at all, but were interested in some of the things we talked to today.
I understand that you don't recall writing down or talking about that at the time. But how much has your thinking evolved from just that time? Let's call it 1999, 2000. How much has your thinking evolved about this subject, the two ways to practice? I'm sorry, the smart way to practice and the two common paths of Jiu-Jitsu. Let's start with the two common paths of Jiu-Jitsu.
Rickson Gracie: The ideas are the same. The concepts are exactly the same, but the evolutionary process made me feel like instead be in my own association with my own representatives, which was very good for a while, but then becomes somehow a little weakening a little bit. Then I decided to stop.
From that concept, I kind of see the whole problem in a much global spectrum. So now, I try to do almost the same thing, but trying to cover not only the guys who are directly connected to me as representatives, my own students, people who I kind of know, but trying to spread that voice around the globe because so many passionate about Jiu-Jitsu who deserve that kind of support, who deserve that kind of guidance.
They're not directly connected to me for any reason. So the Federation will be able to access them without having my flag, my name or my brand or my flag to represent. So they're not commit to represent Hicks and Gracie Jiu-Jitsu. They commit to represent whatever the brand are, plus with the knowledge, with the backbone of our culture.
Tomorrow: Rickson describes how they will use the JJGF platform to change the world.