360 Jiu-Jitsu’s Brief History
As a child, I always loved martial arts and started training in Karate in the early 90s. I started watching the UFC when I was 14 and fell in love with it, but it wasn’t until 2004 that I could begin Jiu Jitsu at Arlington MMA, where I met my soon-to-be best friend and future business partner Jimi Griffin. In 2006, Jimi, a few other friends, and I opened 360 MMA as a private club. We did not teach. Instead, we brought in high-level instructors from the area to teach us. In 2007, we shut the club down. I moved to Dallas and started training under Carlos Machado, the oldest of the Machado Brothers and nephew to Carlos Gracie. In 2012, Jimi and I started a franchise of the Machado Association as RCJ Machado Grand Prairie. In 2014, we split amicably from the Machado Association to forge our path and become 360 Jiu-Jitsu, an ode to 360 MMA and teamed up with the Atos Jiu-Jitsu team. In late 2015, as 360 kept growing, we needed a larger space and were set to move into a brand new 5000 sq ft facility. In 2016, before moving into the new facility, Jimi passed away. It was a difficult time for his family, the academy and myself. I wasn’t sure I would continue the school, but the support of my wife, students, and friends helped me continue. We were in the new facility from 2016 until 2020 when we were forced to shut down due to COVID-19 and had to move out of our large facility. In 2021, we reopened where we are now. When we reopened, I decided 360 Jiu-Jitsu should be independent with no official ties to any other Jiu-Jitsu association.
I’ve competed in tournaments all over the country from the time I started training, but what my wife, Nicole (Coach Nikki) and I love is teaching and helping our students improve their lives through Jiu-Jitsu.
-Prof. Casey Gray
We Defy Foundation provides combat veterans coping with military connected disabilities a long term means to overcome their challenges through Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and fitness training.
BJJ Globetrotters is a world-wide community of travelers against Jiu Jitsu politics. It is an alternative to traditional affiliation within Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.