If you're new here, you may be unaware of Rickson Gracie's decades-long mission to ensure that self-defense—not just BJJ as seen in competitions—is spread far and wide across the world. Below, he shares some of his up-to-date thoughts on the matter, from a recent interview.
"I believe jiu-jitsu has to be complete with the self-defense practice. Without the self-defense, jiu-jitsu becomes too sportive, too predictable, without the unpredictability which is needed for you to handle a street situation. So the self-defense is just an open channel for you to understand the fight can come from a slight conversation, the fight comes from a guy who just takes a knife from his pocket and tries to attack you, the fight can come from, you get hit in the back.
"So the idea of being expecting pre-set rules for engagement—those exist only in sport. The real fight scenario is unpredictable, so if you don't have this kind of open mind to at least expect that, you're in bad shape."