At the end of December, Port Alberni’s taekwondo black belt master, Warren Lee was awarded his black belt in Gracie Jiu-Jitsu in Miami, by the Legendary Royce Gracie. The honour makes Lee one of only four black belts in Canada under Royce Gracie.
Lee now holds two black belts in two different disciplines: taekwondo and jiu-jitsu.
The grading was very involved, Lee said, being sure that self-defense was spot on and athletes were ready for any situation.
Royce Gracie is the man that launched MMA as we see it today. Gracie Jiu-Jitsu was developed for the smaller and weaker to give them the ability to defend themselves using leverage over strength and power. At Warren Lee’s Academy on Third Avenue in Port Alberni, the focus is on self-defense, not tournaments. Lee says no one counts points when you are being assaulted.
“Self-defense is our priority at Dragon Martial Arts Academy—it’s not about hurting anyone, it’s about defending oneself. We have students that travel from out of town to train Gracie Jiu-Jitsu with him: one student is 77 years old.”