The first family of Jiu Jitsu, the Gracie family, have been practicing their martial art for over a century. There are over 4 generations of Gracie’s that are practitioners of Jiu Jitsu and the number is still growing.
Let’s see if we can list every member of the Gracie family tree that practices Jiu Jitsu. We’ll list every generation of Gracie family and give a short bio on each member detailing their work in BJJ.
- 1 The first generation of the Gracie family tree
- 2 The second generation of the Gracie family tree
- 3 The 3rd generation of the Gracie family tree
- 3.1 Carlson Gracie Jr
- 3.2 Renzo Gracie
- 3.3 Ralph Gracie
- 3.4 Ryan Gracie
- 3.5 Rolles Gracie Jr
- 3.6 Clark Gracie
- 3.7 Roger Gracie
- 3.8 Rodrigo Gracie
- 3.9 Igor Gracie
- 3.10 Gregor Gracie
- 3.11 Ryron Gracie
- 3.12 Rener Gracie
- 3.13 Ralek Gracie
- 3.14 Cesar Gracie
- 3.15 Kron Gracie
- 3.16 Crosley Gracie
- 3.17 Rose Gracie
- 3.18 Reylan Gracie
- 3.19 Roggan Gracie
- 4 The 4th generation of the Gracie family
- 5 The Machado Brothers
The first generation of the Gracie family tree
Here is a list of the first generation of the Gracie family that developed the art of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu as we run through the Gracie Family Tree.
Carlos Gracie Sr.
If Carlos Gracie Sr did not begin taking Judo lessons from Mitsuyo Maeda, there would be no Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. He along with mainly his brother Hélio Gracie began developing their martial art based on the Judo techniques Carlos learned.
Carlos would develop and teach his martial art for over six decades. Passing the art of Jiu Jitsu to his 21 children that would also practice their father’s martial art.
Along with Carlos Sr, his younger brother Hélio Gracie, the two would develop Brazilian Jiu Jitsu together. Hélio was actually the inspiration for developing the martial art to give smaller people an equal advantage against larger opponents,
Master Hélio would fight to prove the legitimacy of the Gracie family’s martial art for 4 decades. He and his brother are considered sports heroes within Brazil and respected by all in Jiu Jitsu.
Gastão Gracie Jr
Named after his father, Gastão Gracie Jr learned Jiu Jitsu from his brother Carlos Sr. He would go into business with his brothers to open the first Gracie Jiu Jitsu academy in the 1920s.
He was a beloved instructor to early students and is one of the 6 10th degree black belts.
George Gracie was the second youngest son of Gastão Sr and was the most active fighter of the Gracie brothers. Known for his short temper and reddish hair would earn him the nickname Gato Ruvio or red cat in English.
He was also the fittest of the Gracie brothers and assisted Carlos Sr with developing the Gracie diet.
The second generation of the Gracie family tree
Carlson Gracie Sr
Carslon Gracie Sr is the eldest son of Carlos Gracie Sr and is a legend in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. After learning from his father, Carlson went out on his own to form his own affiliation, Carlson Gracie Jiu Jitsu.
He would train numerous world champions within BJJ and later within MMA. Many of his students would also go on to create their own successful affiliations. From André Pederneiras with Nova União, Mário Sperry with Brazilian Top Team, and Ricardo Liborio with American Top Team.
9th degree black belt, Robson Gracie is the second oldest son of Carlos Gracie Sr. He earned his black belt in the 1950s and began teaching and fighting.
Robson was known for his tenacity as a fighter, which his sons Renzo, Ralph, and Ryan adopted. He currently still lives in Rio de Janeiro and is the current president of the Jiu-Jitsu Federation of Rio de Janeiro.
Carlos Sr’s 3rd oldest son, Reyson has been training for nearly 70s and is one of the few BJJ red belts. Reyson is credited with introducing BJJ to the Amazonas states of Brazil, as well as the state of Bahia.
Through his work bringing Jiu Jitsu to the Amazon region, many top grapplers were able to learn Jiu Jitsu. Including the multi time world champion Ribeiro brothers, Saulo and Xande.
Reylson Gracie is the fourth oldest son of Carlos Sr and has been extremely influential in Jiu Jitsu’s growth. He was one of the first Gracie’s along with Rorion Gracie to introduce Jiu Jitsu to the US.
He would also come of with many of the technique names used in Jiu Jitsu including the mata leao.(Rear Naked Choke) Gracie would also be the first Jiu Jitsu practitioner to introduce colored kimonos into the martial art.
The late Rolls Gracie was considered the best in the family. Before his paragliding accident in 1983, Rolls was considered one of the leaders of the family, who was very influential.
To further develop the family’s grappling skills, Rolls encouraged them to cross train with other grappling arts. By doing this, he and the rest of the family were able to evolve their games. Become better wrestlers and leg lock specialist to go along with their Jiu Jitsu abilities.
Before Reylson and Rorion, Carley Gracie was actually the first Gracie to introduce BJJ to the US. Carley was able to do this, because he enlisted in the US military.
Gracie taught Jiu Jitsu in Connecticut, Maryland, Florida before opening a Jiu Jitsu school in California. He is also the father of Clark and Ralston Gracie.
Carlos Gracie Jr
The CBJJ would later turn into the International Jiu Jitsu Federation.(IBJJF) Carlos Jr has taught countless world champions that would go on to teach even more world champions.
Crolin Gracie was considered just as good as his brother Rolls. Unfortunately, a health condition would cut his time as a competitor short and he then became a full time instructor.
Along with Carlos Gracie Jr, Crolin helped found Gracie Barra and the famous GB gym in Florianopolis. He would help numerous students become world champions and later gym owners.
Rilion Gracie is the youngest son of Carlos Gracie Sr and is considered the best guard player in the family. He helped progress the families guard game and further developed many of the techniques from the position.
Roger Gracie gives his Uncle Rillon credit for helping him develop his guard game. Rillion would also found his own affiliation Rilion Gracie Jiu Jitsu that has affiliate schools across the world.
Rorion Gracie is the oldest son of Hélio Gracie and the founder of the Gracie Jiu Jitsu Academy in Torrance, California. He introduced the Gracie Challenge and helped spread Gracie Jiu Jitsu the most through the Gracie In Action Tapes.
But probably what people know Rorion most for is co-founding the Ultimate Fighting Championship. If you love MMA, you can thank Rorion for starting the UFC and jumpstarting the sport of MMA.
Relson Gracie is Hélio Gracie’s second oldest son and his wild child. As a kid, Relson was incredibly talented and was nicknamed campeão, but also loved to surf and have a good time.
He would settle in Hawaii and bring one of the first American Jiu Jitsu teams to compete in Brazil in 1997. Gracie also created his own affiliation, Relson Gracie Jiu Jitsu with schools all over the world.
Rickson Gracie is Hélio’s 3rd oldest son and is still considered the best fighter of the family. He is said to have never lost in any competition in over 400 bouts. (allegedly)
Even though many question the legitimacy of his fight record, nobody criticizes Rickson’s skills. He is considered a BJJ and MMA legend that is respected by everyone within these communities.
Rolker Gracie is the 4th oldest son of Hélio Gracie and is the head of Gracie Humailta along with Royler Gracie. He and Royler of the school and affiliation since Rickson moved to the US to start his own school.
Under Roller, Gracie Humailta continues to be successful and is still producing top level athletes.
Within the Gracie family, Royler Gracie is the most accomplished competitor of all of them. Royler is considered the king of the featherweight division that won 4 straight world titles and rarely lost a match.
On top of being one of the best competitors of all time, Royler is also an accomplished coach. He is still one of the current heads of Gracie Humailta along with his brother Roller.
MMA legend and UFC Hall of Famer Royce Gracie was the face of the Ultimate Fighting Championship. Royce represented the Gracie family in the inaugural UFC tournaments and won UFC 1,2 and 4.
He was the ambassador for Jiu Jitsu and showed its effectiveness against other martial arts. Without Royce Gracie, Jiu Jitsu and MMA may not have exploded in popularity.
The 3rd generation of the Gracie family tree
Carlson Gracie Jr
Carlson Gracie Jr is the oldest son of Carlson Gracie sr and is the current head of Carlson Gracie Association. From the time he was born, Carlson was on the mat with his father training.
Carlinhos is a 5th degree black belt and coaches at the Carlson Gracie US headquarters in Chicago, Illinois.
A major member within the Gracie family tree, MMA and BJJ legend Renzo Gracie is the son of 9th degree black belt Robson Gracie. During his time as a competitor, Renzo would go 14-7 in MMA and won two ADCC championships.
Aside from being a top athlete, Renzo is the owner of the world famous Renzo Gracie Academy in New York City. He has trained numerous champions in BJJ and MMA in the 20+ years his gym has been open.
Ralph Gracie is Renzo Gracie’s younger brother and is considered the pitbull of the family. He has had his fair share of trouble and some of it is still ongoing.
As a fighter, Ralph had a stellar career going 6-1 before retiring. Gracie is also an accomplished gym owner and has run his school Ralph Gracie Jiu Jitsu for years in San Francisco.
Like his brother Ralph, Ryan Gracie was as talented as he was ill tempered. He had a successful MMA career, but didn’t reach his potential due to problems with the law and drugs.
Unfortunately for Ryan, his demons caught up to him and he passed away in a Sao Paulo Jail in 2007. There are still many unanswered questions lingering about Ryan’s untimely death.
Rolles Gracie Jr
Rolles Gracie Jr is the son of Rolls Gracie who is a 4th degree black belt in Jiu Jitsu. After having a successful BJJ career, Rolles would move to MMA.
His career would span from 2007-2015 and earn a record of 8-4. Since retiring from competition he runs a Renzo Gracie affiliate school in Old Bridge, New Jersey.
Clark Gracie is the son of Carley Gracie and has been one of the more active competitors in the last decade. Known for his good looks and expertise with the omoplata.
He has his own academy located in San Diego, California and travels frequently to compete and give seminars.
Roger Gracie is the son of Reila Gracie, the daughter of Carlos Gracie Sr. He is the greatest BJJ competitor of the last era, who won 10 world championships in a decade of competing.
In his retirement match, he beat rival and the best heavyweight Gi player of the new era Buchecha Almeida. Since retiring, Roger has moved to London, England where he runs his academy Roger Gracy Jiu Jitsu.
Rodrigo Gracie is the son of Reylson Gracie and is a retired competitor, who is a sixth degree black belt. During his time competing, Rodrigo won gold at the first ADCC tournament and earned an MMA record of 6-2.
Since retiring, he has worked at academies owned by Royce and Renzo. He is now the head instructor at his own academy in Palos Verdes, California.
Igor Gracie is the second son of Rolls Gracie and the younger brother of Rolles Jr. Just like his brother, he dedicated his life to the family trade and still competes in various competitions.
When he isn’t competing, Igor is an instructor at Renzo Gracie’s school along with his own affiliate school. He is also a part time male model that you may have seen in ads for cologne and clothes.
Gregor Gracie is the half brother of Rolles Jr and Igor Gracie. Their mother Angela remarried years after Roll’s death and had Gregor.
Just like his brother’s, Gregor became passionate about BJJ and has competed at the highest level. He is also an instructor at Renzo Gracie Academy in New York City.
Ryron Gracie is the oldest son of Rorion Gracie and along with his brother runs the Gracie Breakdown Youtube channel. For those that don’t know, Ryron and Rener breakdown the techniques of different current fights on the channel.
When he isn’t making videos for his channel, Ryron is currently running the Torrance Gracie Academy with his brother Rener.
Rener Gracie is the middle brother to Ryron and Ralek Gracie. As we already mentioned he is the co-owner of the Gracie Breakdown Youtube channel and the Gracie Academy in Torrance.
He is also the co-creator of Gracie University and is currently married to ex WWE wrestler Eve Torres.
Ralek Gracie is the third son of Rorion Gracie and the older brother of Rener and Ryron Gracie. What Ralek is famous for is helping start the pro BJJ show scene.
His promotion Metamoris was one of the first pro grappling shows that got a lot of recognition. He also had a short MMA career and most notably submitted Sakuraba at Dream 14.
Cesar Gracie is the grandson of Carlos Gracie Sr. He would join the US Marines after moving to the country. Once he finished his service he would continue training Jiu Jitsu and would be given his black belt by Robson Gracie.
What Cesar Gracie is most known for is being an MMA coach to some of the best fighters ver. Including the Diaz brothers, Jake Shields, and Gilbert Melendez.
Kron is the second son of Rickson Gracie and was a BJJ athlete and current MMA fighter in the UFC. As a BJJ competitor, Kron is most known for winning a gold medal at the 2013 ADCC Championship.
Then like his dad, Kron would move to MMA and earn a 4-0 record before making it into the UFC. He is currently 1-1 in the promotion and is waiting for his next bout.
Crosley Gracie is the grandson of Carlos Sr and his mother is Rosley Gracie. His Uncle Reylson started teaching him in 1988 when he was young.
During his competitive years, Crosley was successful in national tournaments before opening his own school. As an instructor, Crosley would find more success and help a few students become world champions.
Rose Gracie is the daughter of Rorion Gracie. She grew up along with the boys in the family training Jiu Jitsu.
Like her father Rorio, she got her education and works in various areas along with Jiu Jitsu. She is most known for her ongoing feud with Renato Laranja.
Reylan Gracie is another one of Rorion Gracie’s sons and is a black belt under his father. He is one of the lesser known members of the family, but he had high level skills like his brothers.
Roggan Gracie is the son of Rilion Gracie and teaches at Rilion Gracie HQ in Miami, Florida. For a short time, Roggan fought professionally in MMA before turning to teaching BJJ full-time.
The 4th generation of the Gracie family
Kyra Gracie is the granddaughter of Robson Gracie and the only female Gracie to earn a black belt. (so far) She is also one of the most talented female BJJ athletes of all time.
In her time as a competitor, Kyra won 4 world championships and 3 ADCC gold medals. She is now retired from competition and married to Brazilian actor Malvio Salvador.
Neiman Gracie is the son of Renzo Gracie and currently fights for Bellator MMA in the welterweight division. His record as of now is 11-2 with 9 submission wins.
He is currently one of the top ranked welterweights in the promotion and is working towards earning a title shot.
Khonry Gracie is the son of Royce Gracie and currently fights for Bellator MMA in the welterweight division. He currently has a record of 2-2 and is looking to bounce back from a loss in 2020 on the Bellator 252 card.
The Machado Brothers
While they aren’t technically members of the Gracie family, they are cousins of the Gracie’s and are highly respected BJJ practitioners. Here are some short bios on the Machado brothers.
The oldest of the 5 Machado brothers and is an 8th degree Jiu Jitsu black belt. During the 80s and 90s, he was one of the best BJJ athletes in the world.
He now has numerous BJJ academies all across the world.
The second oldest of the brothers is a 7th degree BJJ black belt and is also a yoga practitioner of many decades. Roger’s brothers refer to him as the zen master of the family.
Rigan Machado is the third oldest of the brothers and is an 8th degree BJJ black belt. As a competitor, Rigan is famous for winning the Brazilian Nationals at every BJJ rank.
But what he is probably most known for is teaching numerous celebrities at his academy in Beverly Hills, California. A few years ago, Rigan awarded Ashton Koucher with his BJJ brown belt.
Jean Jacques Machado
JJ Machado is the 4th of the five brothers and arguably the best of the bunch. Even with his disability, he was able to develop a high level BJJ game.
As a competitor, Jean Jacques won multiple ADCC championships and Brazilian National Championships. He is also a highly regarded instructor that has giving black belts most notably to Joe Rogan and Eddie Bravo.
John Machado is the youngest of the 5 brothers and is a former World Sambo Champion. He currently runs his school in Allen, Texas and has other affiliate schools across the US. Machado also works as an actor from time to time getting bit roles in different action movies.