BJJ Athlete Paralyzed Rolling with Coach

April 2023 has been swirling with the recent news of a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu competitive white belt becoming paralyzed after a freak accident during a roll with his coach.


The student who was in “turtle” seems to have bent his neck in a destructive way when the coach maneuvered around him, causing paralysis from the chest down.

Recovery and litigation have been ongoing for almost 4 years now, meaning this accident occurred years ago. But it’s the impact now that matters most to the community as a whole.


While we all know there are some inherent risks with Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, the risks of the average person aren’t as drastic as this case may seem. To many this appears to be a freak accident, nothing more.

The accident resulted in a lawsuit, where BJJ personality and infamous Gracie family member, Rener Gracie, gave a questionable $100k testimony. His testimony sending ripples throughout the BJJ community, his actions have lead insurances to question whether white belts should be rolling and the worse case, they’re asking if folks need to roll at all. His statements may have even set BJJ back as many coaches are closing their doors to traveling athletes/students due to the recent events.


Rener made off with roughly six figures for his “professional testimony” which to many has come off as lying for a cash grab. In response, Rener released a few statements, and rereleased his program why white belts shouldn’t roll for people to BUY… Which in all honesty feels a little disingenuous to us over here.

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