1stBlackB. from Helio 2 USA inTX!

We have thought about it & cannot think of any straight up Americans that have ever recieved a Black Belt from Grand Master Helio Gracie till now. Let us know if anyone knows anyone that has had this honor. We are very proud of Anre Okipaku for his promotion this weekend. He will be training out of our Academy for 2 more years, next time he'll be around is this Sat. More details here:





I'm pretty sure officially Pedro Valente gave Anire his Black, although Helio was present and gave "his blessing".

Congrats Anire.

you are correct JGO, since Pedro is Helio promoted & Anre trained with Helio that day (as almost every time he steps on American soil) and was there for the blessing of the promotion I would consider Helio blessing as part of the promotion, just as I am sure Pedro is proud of this as well. Either way it's a great accomplishment!

I believe Pedro and Gui were the first and second non-Gracie black belts under Helio, a great honor. Anire would be the first non-Brazilian in that line.

Congrats to Anire and a shout out to Pedro, one of the nicest guys you could hope to train with.


great news!


Pedro with Helio present & approving gave Anre his Black Belt. Anre will be training here in Austin for the next two years. He will be back on our mats Saturday. He trains many times a week with us, he is a true credit to the sport & our academy.


Anre will be back in Austin to train with us tonight.