Home MMA NewsLatest News Rickson Gracie reveals Parkinson’s diagnosis, sees it as ‘gift from God’

Rickson Gracie reveals Parkinson’s diagnosis, sees it as ‘gift from God’

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In a recent conversation with Kyra Gracie, Rickson Gracie unveiled his two-year-old Parkinson’s diagnosis, viewing it as a divine challenge rather than a setback.

At 64, the undefeated vale tudo fighter who dominated the scene from 1980 to 2000 acknowledged the impact of Parkinson’s, a chronic degenerative disease, on his motor functions. He now experiences tremors in his hands and reduced mobility – something he hadn’t before. Despite these changes, Gracie, the son of Helio Gracie, did not find the diagnosis devastating.

In his own words, “I’m prepared for all of life’s possibilities. I embrace both my triumphs and my shortcomings. I accept life for what it has been, hence I am content today. This neurological condition, however, has brought a new perspective to my age and reality. There haven’t been many changes since the diagnosis, except for hand tremors and some lack of movement.”

For Gracie, the symptoms are merely a minor inconvenience, and his drive to rise and work every morning remains undiminished.

He further added, “I don’t regard this as a shock, but rather as another divine challenge to see how I will respond. If I give you a large sum of money and you misuse it, then the money hasn’t served its purpose. But if I give you the same money and you use it positively, then I can take pride in my gesture.

In a similar vein, God has presented me with a circumstance that I can use for the greater good. The most significant response I have today is my profound gratitude for jiu-jitsu. I continue to promote and empower through jiu-jitsu, making it accessible to those who need it most. In this way, I envision myself floating effortlessly in a pristine blue ocean, anticipating the following day without undue worry.”

Gracie’s notable career boasts nine official vale tudo victories in Brazil and Japan, including two memorable armbar finishes of Nobuhiko Takada, leading to the launch of PRIDE in the late 1990s. Alongside this, he has claimed approximately 450 unofficial wins worldwide.

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