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Carlson Gracie Jr. in the House!!!

Carlson Gracie Jr-055   A while ago, Sergio Zimmermann Canudo posted on the Pound for Pound Facebook page that we would be honored with the presence of his first Brazilian Jiu Jitsu teacher. No one less than someone from the notorious Gracie family, who made the strength, effectiveness, philosophy and benefits of BJJ manifest to the world. His name is Carlson Gracie Junior. Hardly surprising: not much later many students subscribed to ‘going’ to this seminar which was to be held Thursday evening the 21st of May. He arrived already on Wednesday the 20th, a couple of hours before our regular class would start. Even though he just jumped off the plane from Chicago, he insisted on teaching the Pound for Pound students! A welcome surprise for all who were present that day. Needless to say, we were all thrilled! The class started with Sergio introducing his first teacher. It was beautiful to see the interplay between these two men. Perhaps it could be described in the following way: from master to student, to master. One phrase in particular caught my attention when Sergio said that when he was a white belt, no one took notice of him, except Carlson Gracie Jr. A ‘mindset’ that seems to be embedded in the way he teaches, because also here, he noticed the white belts and gave all of them a lot of attention to make sure that they could proceed practicing and drilling the shown techniques in a constructive and meaningful manner. In his view, knowing your basics well is essential, because when you grow old or tired, it are the basics that keep you ‘alive’ and relatively ‘well’ 😉 Not unimportant: with Carlson Gracie Jr. there is always much humor and positive energy involved, which motivates many! This can be illustrated by his self-assumed role of “#SelfieKing”. Which seems legit as he seems to make selfies after every seminar or class he teaches whenever and wherever! The next day, the actual seminar commenced. Many showed up. It was fascinating to observe that wonder and excitement had briefly replaced the normally relaxed atmosphere. After all: meeting a VIP in the BJJ world does not happen everyday. Again, Carlson Gracie Jr. was as happy as ever and presented us with many diverse techniques: from basic escape methods and various ways to choke someone to sweep techniques – all using hardly any strength: it is pure technique. In my view, that is the beauty of BJJ. Carlson Gracie Jr-056 Carlson Gracie Jr. is not only a good teacher because of the techniques he teaches, but also, and perhaps most importantly, because he is so approachable. Everyone, regardless of your belt colour, is welcome. By getting to know Carlson Gracie Jr. a little bit, I started to understand his student and my master, Sergio, better as well. He too notices white belts and helps them in every way he can think of. Having as a result that when they advance, they will be fine and have a strong basis to work from. We should always honour and be thankful to our benefactors. Ossssss!!!   Laurien Zurhake