Jump Kick -TequilaYuen -sassen -
There is something I don't like about him. Reckon he has a big secret. Something off putting.
Not really a secret, but not freely discussed. Rener and his brother Ryron pushed their own father Rorion OUT of the Gracie business.
Rorion started the Gracie Academy in Torrance in 1989. The first Brazilian jiu-jitsu school in North America. As his sons grew and progressed in the art, he was happy to have them take on instructor roles.
This went on for many years. Rener and Ryron - especially Rener - took more and more initiative with the business. The Gracie University website, the combatives curriculum, the online blue belt instruction program, the intense merchandising - that was all Rener.
Still, Rener wanted more: He wanted control of the business. Why stay under his dad's thumb when he was the one really doing all the work and running the show?
A couple years ago, Rener and Ryron made their move: They opened a new location under the name of Gracie University. They took all Gracie Academy's clientele with them. They started a new merchandise line divorced from the name of Gracie Academy.
They gave their father Rorion a choice: He could come with them in a salaried figurehead position. Or he could continue with the Gracie Academy name alone.
Rorion is a prideful man. He didn't want to be under his sons. He took the latter option.
Gracie Academy's original location closed its doors a few months after Gracie University opened.
So now Gracie University is thriving. Rener and Ryron have taken control of Gracie Jiu-Jitsu, with no involvement from the father.
And Rorion goes his separate way. How does he feel about it? You won't find any pictures of his adult sons on his social media.
Seems like a somewhat reasonable thing to do by the brothers.
Like I said, it's not really a secret in the Los Angeles jiu-jitsu scene. I mean, there is no way to hide it, the Gracie Academy location is gone and the new Gracie University location is in full swing.
But it is not discussed.
When the abandoning of Gracie Academy and move to Gracie University was in the works, the student base was understandably confused about what was going on.
Rener and Ryron posted a short video with Rorion in an obvious PR attempt to quell the gossip. "Top secret!" "Enough talking, I'll see you on the mat!"
But since then, you can see for yourself: There have been no appearances of Rorion on any Gracie University content. No mention of him on any Gracie University social media. You will find more pictures of Rener and Ryron's dead grandfather Helio on their instagram than their own father. There is nothing of Rorion.
And vice versa, Rorion refuses to mention or promote Gracie University. He does not wear their merchandise. He does not talk about his sons.