Renzo was born on March 11, 1967, in Rio de Janeiro – Brazil. He is the grandson of Gracie Jiu Jitsu founder Carlos Gracie and son of 9th Dan BJJ black belt Robson Gracie, brother to Ralph and Ryan Gracie. Like most men in the Gracie family, Renzo started training Jiu Jitsu as an infant. He had formal instructor from many of the Gracie patriarchs, but to of his biggest influences were the legendary Rolls Gracie and Carlos Gracie Jr (the man who later awarded him his black belt).
Renzo has won numerous competitions the most prestigious being the Abu Dhabi Combat Club (ADCC) in which he is a 2x Champion.
Renzo’s name is also synonymous with Vale-Tudo, the famous No Holds Barred style of fighting in Brazil that originated today’s Mixed Martial Arts (MMA). Renzo’s first official fight was at the age of 25 in the Gracie Vale Tudo Challenge were he submitted his opponent Luiz Augusto Alvareda by rear naked choke.
Renzo has fought all over the world for organizations such as Pride FC in its heyday and the UFC. He pioneered Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu in America in the 1990’s when he founded Renzo Gracie Academy in New York City, one of the cornerstones of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu in America.
He is established as one of the best teachers and mentors in the sport. With his signature combination of charisma and intelligence, he has guided students such as Matt Serra a former UFC Champion, Roger Gracie a 10x Jiu Jitsu world champion, John Danaher the Jiu-Jitsu Coach to UFC Champions Georges St-Pierre & Chris Weidman, Shawn Williams, and Ricardo Almeida to black belt.