Henry Akins: Rickson Gracie Black Belt and BJJ Scientist

Get to know this BJJ Legend

Henry Akins may be one of the best kept secrets in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.  Many new practitioners may not know much about this  BJJ pioneer.  In fact there is very little on the internet about him.  If you search YouTube you will only find a handful of instructional videos.  It seems that Henry Akins is much like his “invisible jiu-jitsu”.

Henry Akins is a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt under the legendary Master Rickson Gracie.  Even though Rickson can cast a large shadow…Henry has carved his own path in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.  Henry was the 3rd Black Belt under Rickson Gracie and spent nearly 15 years training side-by-side with the Master.  He even taught at Rickson’s school for many years before opening his own school, Dynamix Martial Arts.  Henry  has a very scientific and philisophical approach to BJJ.  He is known to have probably the deepest understanding of “invisible Jiu-Jitsu” outside of Rickson Gracie.  He is also a vegan.

From his website

Henry Akins began training in Brazilian Jiu-jitsu in 1995 at the Rickson Gracie Acadamy on Pico blvd in West LA. Shortly after he started he became the secretary at the acadamy and was spending 70 hours a week there watching and participating in all of the classes. In 1997 the school moved to the Pacific Palisades where Henry trained and assisted main Instructor Luis Heredia and also participated and trained in all of the classes taught by Rickson. During these years Henry had the opportunity to train with Rickson and help him prepare for his fights in Japan. In 2000 the acadamy moved again to Wilshire blvd in West LA. By this time Henry had begun teaching many of the classes at the school.

In Feb of 2004, because of his persistence and dedication to the fundamentals and philosophies of Jiu-Jitsu, Rickson Gracie presented Henry with a blackbelt, being only the third American at the time to receive that honor. Henry then took over the school and became the main instructor there until 2008 when he was forced to stop due to a back injury. Now Henry is the head Jiu-Jitsu instructor at Dynamix Martial Arts and although Henry is no longer affiliated with Rickson Gracie or his association, he feels blessed to be able to share this art with others and to pass on the knowledge that was taught to him by the greatest Jiu-Jitsu practitioner ever.


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