The island’s leading Jiu-Jitsu academy, Gracie Barra Isle of Man, is changing its named to Summit Grappling Academy (SGA IOM).

The change signals a new era for the academy as it hopes to focus on a wider range of grappling disciplines and offer more training opportunities to members.

The classes offered will continue to focus on techniques for self-defence and combat sports, including teaching throws, trips, sweeps, clinch fighting, ground fighting and submissions. Opening as Gracie Barra IoM in 2018, the academy has been hugely successful in British, European and world competitions over the last six years.

After bringing home no fewer than 130 medals in 2023 and with more than 250 members, the new Summit Grappling Academy has big ambitions for the future.

Owner and head coach Conrad Roberts said: ‘I am so proud of our team and what we’ve achieved, and being part of the Gracie Barra network has helped to get us where we are today.

‘We are one of largest sports academies in the Isle of Man, with world-ranked competitors and European champions in our adult and children’s squads, but there’s more than we can do.

‘This evolution into Summit Grappling Academy allows us to continue growing our family, expanding into other disciplines in the future and having the flexibility to offer the best possible training opportunities to our members.

‘I’m excited to see what the future holds for us and can’t wait to continue representing the island on the global stage as the independent Manx team of Summit Grappling Academy.’

Competitor and coach Hayley Curtis, who was ranked third in the world in her division in 2023 and has been with the academy for five years, said: ‘Grappling sports have so many benefits whether you’re interested in competing or just as a hobby. They’re great for self-defence, cardio fitness and strength but also have a positive impact on mental health, teaching resilience, teamwork and discipline.

‘We’re also a really sociable academy, it’s a real privilege to train with the supportive team we’ve built. I’d encourage anyone who’s looking for a new hobby, way to exercise or just wants to try something new to give it a go.’

Summit Grappling Academy will continue to offer classes for children (aged 3+), teens and adults in both Gi and Nogi Jiu-Jitsu, kids kickboxing and gym facilities. It will now also offer judo and shortly become what is believed to be the first local academy to offer wrestling.

The academy is based in Hills Meadow, Douglas. Children’s classes are run six days a week, adult classes and gym access is available seven days a week. For more information about Summit Grappling Academy, including how to sign up for a trial, email [email protected] or find it on Facebook or Instagram.