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Gracie News

The First Puerto Rican Pink Belt

November 6, 2012

I am a Black Belt Taekwondo Instructor Certified by Kukkiwon with 20 years experience in teaching and competition I am also a Certified Personal Trainer. I was introduced to Gracie Jiu-Jitsu by my husband. He told me about the Gracie family history, their philosophies and the Gracie Diet. Interested and motivated I began training Gracie Combatives. At the time I was excited to hear that Gracie Academy would be releasing a self-defense program for women called Women Empowered. When I received the DVD's I initially spent time going over all the amazing facts and statistics in the Total Empowerment Handbook.

I found myself comparing and contrasting this information with the crimes, facts and statistics around me. I realized how serious this all was. The information in the handbook and the lessons on the DVD's reaffirmed to me how important it was to learn Women Empowered. "I could not find myself in a situation as terrifying as the crimes I hear about, and have no options!?" I was convinced of the techniques and how they could save my life!

Here was the problem! As much as I like the idea of being able to do all these amazing techniques, especially to someone wanting to do me harm or maybe even kill me. I did not always have the patience and discipline to learn them. My training partner wasn't always that understanding either. Some days were better then others. Little by little as I got better we both were excited about my progress. Finally, I was ready and sent my video exam and 2 weeks later I found out I passed! It's better to know self defense and never use it, then need it and not have it.

I review Women Empowered twice a week and study Combatives 3 times a week. My favorite techniques are the Elbow Escape, Guillotine Choke and Kimura Armlock. It's exciting to learn Jiu-Jitsu through Gracie University in the comfort of my own home. I know this is just the beginning of my journey. I plan to test for my Blue Belt in Combatives in a few months, and then look at taking the Instructors Certification Program possibly in the summer.

I thank Gracie Academy for the amazing programs. I wish all women the best, and that you work hard to protect what is yours.

Jasmine Figueroa

To learn more about the Women Empowered program and to watch the first two lessons for free, click here.

Click here to see Jasmine in action.