Brazilian Martial Artist With UFC Pedigree Visits East Texas

This weekend, East Texas martial arts enthusiasts are taking part in an instructional weekend with one of the first families of ultimate fighting. At the Moo Duk Kwan martial arts center in White Oak, 24 year old Rener Gracie is teaching his family's form of jiu- jitsu.

"My father brought Gracie jiu-jitsu from Brazil to America because he knew we had a secret and a system of self defense that the world should and will eventually know about" says Gracie.

The 23 year-old, 4th-degree black belt now travels the country teaching his discipline to everyone, including military units and law enforcement agencies.

"They teach thousands of other soldiers underneath them so what we do is we spend a lot of time traveling to different military bases and teaching the trainers of the recruits" Rener says.

His father helped create the popular Ultimate Fighting Championship in 1993. His uncle Royce Gracie was a 2-time champion.

"What he wanted to do was to put our families system of self defense, Gracie jiu-jitsu, up against other systems of self defense. It's very real, and it's fun to watch" he says.

But Rener says the real excitement is teaching his simple techniques of avoiding and escaping a real life attack.

"It doesn't matter what they come to me with, I'm going to get them to a level of proficiency that will make a difference in their life" Rener says.

Gracie hopes one day everyone will be able to protect themselves through his families techniques.   Gracie Martial Arts is based in California, but the family teaches all over the world. Two more seminars will be held tomorrow. For information you're asked to contact the Moo Duk Kwan" training center in White Oak.

Bob Hallmark, Reporting bhallmark@kltv.com