Royler: “The Pan is the biggest there is”

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Royler Gracie / Personal archive photo

In a conversation with GRACIEMAG magazine Portuguese edition Royler Gracie touches on the subject of MMA. However, the four-time IBJJF World Championship-winning black belt also addresses how the fighting style, mainly through such events as the UFC, has had an impact on the gentle art.

“MMA has grown by leaps and bounds, these days everyone is tuned in to the sport. Despite the emphasis on knockouts, you just can’t get into the ring or cage without knowing Jiu-Jitsu. All fighters are obliged to train in it. The difficulties that were imposed on Jiu-Jitsu, by the rules of MMA and because these days everyone trains, made the style evolve a lot, perhaps being the one that developed most,” he says in the interview.

“The growth of MMA has also caused the number of practitioners in the academy to rise; just take a look at the technical level and numbers of athletes in the main tournaments. This week is the Pan, with thousands of athletes. Nowadays the Pan is a success, perhaps the biggest championship in the world.”

Check out our continuous coverage of the 2012 Pan in real time via Facebook by clicking here, or on Twitter, @graciemag_br in Portuguese or @graciemag in English.

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