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BUSINESS: Brazilian Jiu Jitsu studio produces top grappler only a few years after opening (video)


Many businesses measure their success by growth and profits – others do it by the fruits of their work.

The Renzo Gracie Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Academy of Reno has produced one of the top 16 grapplers in the world. That’s according to Max McGarr, who moved to Reno from the East Coast about five years ago to open the academy.

McGarr trained with Gracie in New York City. Gracie, a relative to the Gracie Jiu Jitsu family of grapplers, was an early mixed martial arts pioneer in the United States. He fought in the early UFC and later in Japan’s Pride MMA competition.

McGarr, in NYC, taught submission grappling, with and without a gi, and MMA at the flagship Renzo Gracie Academy for more than 10 years. He opened up shop in Reno five years ago.

One of his top students is 24-year-old Damon Ramos, who has been studying at the Renzo Gracie Reno school since 2018.

“There hasn’t been a class that he hasn’t shown up to,” McGarr said. “He’s in here three times a day working hard. He’s got the mind of a champion.”

“He taught me a lot of things like mental toughness [and] determination, work ethic and discipline,” Ramos said of McGarr. “It’s a very beautiful art in that way.”

Ramos recently was selected to compete at the ADCC Submission Fighting World Federation world championships in Las Vegas – an international competition. Just getting invited was a big deal, he said.

While he didn’t beat all of his opponents, being selected, Rojas added, was an honor.

“I didn’t win the trials,” Ramos said. “The East Coast, I got second, and the West Coast, I got fourth … because of injury. I lost in the semi-finals. I didn’t do too bad.”

Ramos said he’s preparing for a No-Gi World competition in December.

“That one is still pretty big,” he said.

McGarr agreed.

“I believe he’s going to be the next champion in a few years,” McGarr said. “That’s his goal.”

Learn more: https://www.renzograciereno.com/


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Bob Conrad
Bob Conradhttp://thisisreno.com
Bob Conrad is publisher, editor and co-founder of This Is Reno. He has served in communications positions for various state agencies and earned a doctorate in educational leadership from the University of Nevada, Reno in 2011. He is also a part time instructor at UNR and sits on the boards of the Nevada Press Association and Nevada Open Government Coalition.