Friday, March 3, 2023

Business Spotlight: Gracie Gym Maine

There’s a reason why Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu has taken the world by storm, and now everyone interested in the popular form of martial arts can receive instruction at an exceptional new facility in Windham.

Gracie Gym Maine's Vinicius Garcia
is widely considered as one of the most elite
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu instructors in the world.
He has trained in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu since he
was 16 and has competed in and won many of
Brazil's top events under renowned coach
Rodrigo Castro who promoted him to black
belt in 2015. SUBMITTED PHOTO      
Gracie Gym Maine has opened at 770 Roosevelt Trail #6 in the Shaw’s Plaza in North Windham and its academy is expected to draw students from all over the state. It offers Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu lessons to everyone ages 4 and up and the program’s head coach, Vinicius Garcia, is widely considered one of the most elite Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu instructors in the world.

Garcia has been training in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu since the age of 16 and has competed in many of Brazil’s top events under renowned coach Rodrigo Castro who promoted him to black belt in 2015.

“We have kid’s classes, teen classes, beginner classes and advanced classes, both in Gi and No-Gi,” said Gracie Gym Maine owner Michael Smith. “Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) is a self-defense martial art system and combat sport, focused on grappling and ground fighting. It promotes the concept that smaller and weaker people can successfully defend themselves against bigger, stronger, and heavier attackers.”

Smith said that seeing people change and transform their lives through Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is gratifying and it’s the reason that he decided to open Gracie Gym Maine in Windham.

“The transformation is really remarkable,” Smith said. “Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu will change your life. It is a profound mentally, physically, and spiritually experience.”

According to Smith, the caliber of instruction being offered at Gracie Gym Maine is exceptional and features three experienced Brazilian instructors using modern teaching techniques.

“We intend to build a Gracie Family Culture where all individuals become better together,” Smith said. “We have the most class times for Gi and No-Gi than any Jiu Jitsu Gym in Maine and the size of our academy and facility is more than 7,000 square feet and has over 3.000 square feet of mat space.”

Other amenities available at Gracie Gym Maine include a weight room and a recovery lounge with an infrared sauna and cold plunge. Additionally, there is plenty of seating and five changing rooms.

Smith said that Gracie Gym Maine has made sure it’s covered all the bases to ensure a comfortable and outstanding user experience.

“We are offering legacy memberships for the first 90 days where pricing will be the lowest that we will ever offer,” Smith said. “The facility rivals Jiu-Jitsu academies in major metropolitan areas in size, amenities and instruction level and yet keeps the pricing below industry standard.”

Originating in Brazil in the early 20th century, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu focuses on using leverage and submission holds to defeat opponents, making it an effective form of self-defense for people of all sizes and abilities. It is an effective form of self-defense because it teaches practitioners how to stay calm and composed in high-pressure situations.

Along with teaching physical techniques, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu also emphasizes the development of mental toughness and a strong, positive mindset. Its practitioners learn to be confident and mentally prepared for any situation, and its intense, full-body workout will help participants get in great shape and improve their overall physical fitness.

All Gracie Gym Maine professors are certified Black Belts through the International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation.

Smith also dispelled a common misconception about Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu that participants must know something about martial arts before walking in the door.

“Come as you are,” he said. “We love beginners. Most students start as beginners who have never trained before, and all foundational classes are designed to introduce the basic concepts.”

Besides providing basic instruction, Smith said that Gracie Gym Maine will be a place for seasoned Jiu-Jitsu practitioners and high-level competitors to continue to refine their game.

“At Gracie Gym Maine, everybody is important. We’re here to help everyone experience a transformation, but it’s not easy. It’s hard and the mat is a great equalizer. We offer a personal, professional, and spiritual challenge from the very finest instructors.”

For more information about Gracie Gym Maine, call 207-383-2228 or visit Find them on Instagram under graciegymmaine <

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