Igor Gracie has just been promoted to 5th degree black belt in BJJ by his family member Renzo Gracie after spending years training in the martial art. Just like almost all members of the Gracie family, Igor has spent his whole life on the mats and has experience competing in both Jiu-Jitsu and MMA. He was born back in 1980 and continues to teach and train to this day in New York both in the blue basement of Renzo Gracie Academy headquarters and in his own academy, Igor Gracie Jiu-Jitsu in New Rochelle. His recent promotion comes a little over a month after his 43rd birthday and was given to him by one of his longest training partners and his own coach, Renzo.
Igor Gracie competed frequently during his journey through the coloured belt ranks in the early 2000s and continued to do so after he was promoted to black belt as well. He reached the podium of several major tournaments during his adult black belt career, including winning a bronze medal at both the IBJJF Pan Championship and the IBJJF no gi World Championship. He also began his professional MMA career around the same time in 2008 and represented Renzo Gracie Jiu-Jitsu in the welterweight division for the following five years.
He went 1-1 while fighting for Ring of Combat in his first year as a professional, before fighting Vagner Rocha in the very early days of Bellator in 2009. Although he lost that fight, Igor Gracie went on a run of four wins after that for a variety of different promotions, including StrikeForce. He only fought twice more after this with one each coming under ONE Championship and World Series of Fighting (now PFL), although he lost both fights. After that Igor Gracie retired from professional MMA with a 5-4 record and returned to competing in BJJ, where he continues to compete to this day in the masters division.
Igor Gracie announced the news that he had been promoted to 5th degree black belt by Renzo in a recent post to his official Instagram account: