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home > Gracie Survival Tactics
Gracie Survival Tactics (GST) Online Course   
Gracie Survival Tactics

Gracie Survival Tactics is a revolutionary defensive tactics system that incorporates time-tested techniques into an easy to learn system designed to help officers humanely prevail against larger and stronger opponents. The GST system is a two-tiered system designed for Law Enforcement professionals. GST is derived from the techniques of Gracie Jiu-Jitsu.

Gracie Jiu-Jitsu

Almost a Century-Long Track Record
Gracie Jiu-Jitsu Gracie Jiu-Jitsu was developed by Helio Gracie, a grand master who was small statured (5’6” tall), and not naturally athletic. Beginning in the 1920’s, Helio began his journey of tailoring the system to use various principles, such as leverage and distance management, to defeat opponents who were almost twice as large as him and much more athletic. Helio Gracie spent his long life testing and refining the techniques against all challengers.

After about 70 years of continuous testing, the world got to see a smaller and weaker son of Helio Gracie defeat larger and stronger skilled opponents on American television. Shortly thereafter, in response to requests by Law Enforcement officers, the Gracie University extracted the most effective techniques that were the easiest to learn, to address the most common situations that a law enforcement professional was likely to face.

In the ensuing twenty years, GST has been taught to hundreds of law enforcement agencies (Local, State, and Federal). Over the years, GST has grown through word-of-mouth by the people who put themselves in harm’s way every day and night.

Ryron and Rener Gracie Discuss the GST Truths -
Click to Watch

A Perfect Fit for Today’s Tactical, Legal and Political Environment
The GST System has recently been reviewed both medically and legally for use in law enforcement. Furthermore, although GST was developed for its tactical effectiveness, its leverage-based techniques are less likely to cause serious injury to both the officer and arrestee. Also, GST’s benign appearance has a greater acceptance from a viewing public, which has been increasingly scrutinizing televised videos of police actions. Here are some links to those reviews as well as some articles about the system:

The GST Advantage
An encounter between a military/law enforcement professional and bad guy is vastly different from a street fight or a sport jiu-jitsu match. Yet, some Combatives/Defensive Tactics programs make no distinction. GST is the fastest growing Combatives/Defensive Tactics program in the world because it is the only “jiu-jitsu based” program that is 100% law enforcement applicable that has also been proven in actual combat by US military troops around the globe. We built this highly successful program over the last 20 years on the three “truths:”

  1. The bad guy always has the ambush advantage.
    In a real fight, there is no referee to start or to stop the fight when you are getting assaulted. Only the suspect knows when and how he will attack. Any time you are close enough to conduct a pat-down, or to exchange documents, you are close enough to be ambushed. In the GST program, we teach simple and effective sudden assault defense strategies that enable you to neutralize the threat and achieve a position of advantage while minimizing injury to yourself and the bad guy.
  2. Never grapple with the suspect/enemy by choice.
    As a military or law enforcement professional, the public doesn’t pay you to fight fairly. If you enter into a “grappling match” with the suspect, you put yourself in great danger since the suspect could take your weapons and use them against you. If, however, the fight goes to the ground against your will, you must know what to do. In the GST program, we teach time-tested escape techniques that can be used to get you off the ground and back to your feet so that you can establish distance and utilize the appropriate force option to neutralize the threat. GST also features a series of leverage-based weapon retention principles you can apply in any grappling scenario to keep your weapons secure until you have the opportunity to disengage from the ground fight. Our philosophy is simple: Learn how to grapple, so you don’t have to.
  3. In a street fight, there is no “tap-out.”
    In sportive jiu-jitsu practice, the tap-out matters; in a fight for your life against an aggressive subject, it doesn’t. For military and law enforcement professionals, we understand that victory isn’t achieved until you neutralize the threat and apprehended the bad guy. In the GST program we have devised a series of simple, yet reliable, handcuffing procedures you can use from virtually every position in the fight, and the techniques are applicable to both solo and partner arrests.

Tactical Gear Tested
We have tested every technique in the Gracie Survival Tactics course in body armor and a duty belt. In fact, we have included the full tactical gear demo for Level 1 and Level 2 techniques in the GST online video courses.

Tactical Gear

Educated “Bad Guys”
Educated Bad GuysMMA is the fastest growing sport in the world, and general public’s knowledge on basic fighting strategies and techniques has never been so high. There is a very real risk that a military or law enforcement professional will encounter a bad guy with some form of martial arts training. The GST program is designed to give any military or law enforcement professional – regardless of age, gender or athletic ability – the skills to: 1) Neutralize the threat, 2) Retain control of their weapons, and 3) Achieve a position of advantage so they can utilize appropriate force.

Remember, while you are reading this, the enemy is training.

Multi-Level System
The GST system of two levels of instructor certifications:

  • The Level 1 Instructor Certification consists of 23 techniques that address the most common scenarios that a law enforcement professional is likely to confront.
  • The Level 2 Instructor Certification adds 15 more lessons to complete the system that will give LE professionals the tools to survive and prevail in the ever-changing, fast-paced environment of today’s streets.

The Level 1 and Level 2 Courses are both available online.
These password-protected, mobile-device compatible, distance learning courses offer:

  • Video Instruction: Watch the Gracie Brothers explain and demonstrate the GST techniques in extreme detail in front of a live audience at Gracie Academy headquarters.
  • Immediate Access: After you submit a basic application and we verify your military or law enforcement credentials, we will unlock the GST course in your Gracie University lesson library so you can start training immediately.
  • Bullet Point Presentations: Incredibly organized to enhance student learning with detailed printouts available for each lesson.
  • Book Marks: The student can bookmark essential points in each lesson for quick reference.
  • Note-Taking Feature: This allows the student to take notes on critical details as they learn the course of instruction.
  • Interactive LE/MIL Forum: A dedicated forum where the student can engage other fellow students (military and law enforcement restricted) in conversations around the world.
  • Plant the Seed: If your organization will not finance your participation in the five-day Hands-On GST Instructor Certification Course, you can use the online course to learn the techniques, share them with your colleagues, and eventually influence the decision makers to support your attendance to the hands-on course. To learn more about how to get GST adopted by your agency, read 9 Vital Steps to Incorporate GST in Your Agency.
  • Lifetime Access: Once you purchase the online course, it’s yours forever. You can log in to your account and review your GST techniques at any time and from any place.
  • Free Updates: GST is a “living curriculum” that we constantly refine to meet the needs of those whose lives depend on it. Each time we modify a GST technique we re-record that video lesson and replace it in your online library so you are always up to date on the most effective technique.
GST level 1: $395

GST level 2: $395

GST level 1 and 2: $700

Hands-on, Instructor Certifications AvailableHands-on, Instructor Certifications Available!
The GST system offers two levels of instructor certifications. Each instructor certification course includes both training in the techniques but also how to instruct the system to law enforcement end users. The student trains under the watchful eye of the lead instructor (all lead instructors are official Gracie University Master Instructors.

Bonus for hands on Instructor Certification Course: The complete GST online course is included as a free bonus for all currently certified GST Instructors. Upon successful completion of the hands-on course, we will unlock the GST online course so you can log in at any time to review the techniques. Click here for a list of instructor certification courses.

The Hands-on Instructor Certification Course vs. the Online Course
Over the last few years, a frequent question is: “should I purchase the online-course or attend the instructor certification school?”

  • We recommend the instructor certification course if there is one nearby or you are able to travel. With the Instructor Certification course, you will have a Gracie University instructor giving you personal attention as they ensure that you understand the techniques. Additionally, you will be extensively trained, for the last two days of the course, in the Gracie Instructor Methodologies. After this training, you will be authorized to train your fellow officers in the GST life-saving techniques. Furthermore, you will get free access to the online course during the certification period.
  • If the Instructor Certification course is not an option for any reason such as travel/expense/time-off, we recommend the online course, which are the GST techniques professionally filmed (with the same high quality that you are accustomed to with Gracie University). Every technique of the GST hands-on course is on film and included in the online course. However, the instructor methodologies can only be accessed by the hands-on course.

To learn more about the GST Hands-On Course or to view upcoming course dates, click here.

Click to see what other military and law enforcement professionals are saying about GST

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What’s the difference between the GST techniques and Gracie Combatives techniques?
    The GST techniques are VERY different from the Gracie Combatives techniques. First and foremost each and every technique has been modified for military and law enforcement applicability. All of the GST techniques have been adapted to address weapon retention and to accommodate the reduced mobility experienced by military and law enforcement professionals when wearing tactical gear. In addition, all the techniques have been customized to end with the bad guy in handcuffs.
  2. If I complete the GST course online, will I be certified to teach it to my colleagues?
    No. Although you are allowed to practice with your colleagues using the GST online course, before you are officially authorized to teach the GST techniques to any of your colleagues, you must complete the 5-day Hands-On GST Instructor Certification Course.
  3. If I currently hold a valid GST Instructor's Certificate, how do I access the online GST Course?
    If you have recently completed the GST Hands-On Instructor Certification Course and your certificate is still valid, you are entitled to receive full access to the GST online video course. In order for us to give you this access, please follow these steps: 1) Create a Gracie University profile if you haven't already, 2) Send an email to with the following information: your full name, your department/organization, the location and date of the GST course you participated in, the expiration date on your GST instructor certificate, and a phone number for us to contact you. Once we get this information and verify your status as an actively certified GST instructor, we will unlock the GST course in your online lesson library. Please note that your GST online course access will remain as long as you hold a valid instructor's certificate. If your GST certificate expires and you fail to re-certify, the GST course will be removed from your online lesson library.
  4. Are there any resources available to help me integrate GST at my agency?
    Yes, there was a very good article written by a GST certified, Texas police officer who overcame significant resistance to get GST into his department. The article is titled, “9 Strategies on Implementing GST at Your Agency.”

Additional Resources

The Brothers Behind the System
The Brothers Behind the System Ryron and Rener Gracie are the grandsons of Grand Master Helio Gracie. Born and raised in an environment that holds the principles of Gracie Jiu-Jitsu as sacred, Ryron and Rener Gracie were practicing the system before they could walk. In fact, while they were still children, they were entrusted to teach the system. As teenagers, they would travel with their father to teach various military and law enforcement units. Now, as the head instructors of GST for the last 10 years, they have trained thousands of Federal/Local/State Law Enforcement professionals from every region of the United States. They are committed to continually refining the GST System to suit the ever-changing environment that their Law Enforcement clients find themselves in.

Find out more at, or email

Additional Resources
Upcoming Live GST Course Dates
List of Clients Using GST
Video library GST video testimonials
Read More About the GST program
Purchase Options
GST (Level 1) Online Video Course - $395
GST (Level 2) Online Video Course - $395
GST (Level 1 and 2) Online Video Course - $700
For multiple or bulk purchases, your organization can qualify for a discounted rate. Please contact us for a bulk discount rate and/or if your organization must make a payment other than by credit card.
Legal Reviews
Medical Review
Legal Review
Review for Excited/Agitated Delirium
How Mixed Martial Arts Impacted Law Enforcement
9 Vital Steps to Incorporate GST in Your Agency
Why Investing in Empty Hand Skills Helps Reduce Liability Exposure for Officers and Their Agency
GST Level 1
The GST Truths
Intro Class
Lesson 1: Base Get-up
Lesson 2: Trap and Roll Escape
Lesson 3: Americana Armlock
Lesson 4: Mount Control
Lesson 5: Take the Back
Lesson 6: Carotid Restraint
Lesson 7: Straight Armlock
Lesson 8: Clinch Control
Lesson 9: Body Fold Takedown (Revised)
Lesson 10: Punch Block Series
Lesson 11: Guard Get-up (Revised)
Lesson 12: Twisting Arm Hand Cuffing Procedure
Lesson 13: Side Mount Control (Revised)
Lesson 14: Double Underhook Pass
Lesson 15: Elbow Escape
Lesson 16: Triangle Restraint
Lesson 17: Shrimp Escape
Lesson 18: Safe Draw
Lesson 19: Double Leg Takedown
Lesson 20: Front Headlock Neck Restraint
Lesson 21: Headlock Escape
Lesson 22: Hidden Arm Technique (Revised)
Lesson 23: Kimura (Gun Retention)
Tactical Gear Demo
The 4-Hour GST Training Module
GST Testimonials
GST Level 2
Intro Class
Lesson 1: Twisting Arm Control
Lesson 2: Knee on Stomach
Lesson 3: Advanced Guard Get-up
Lesson 4: Back Mount Escape (New)
Lesson 5: Cross Draw Weapon Retention
Lesson 6: Multiple Officer Arrest Procedure
Lesson 7: Vascular Neck Restraint
Lesson 8: Rear Takedown
Lesson 9: Two-Man Takedown
Lesson 10: Wall-Pin Tactics
Lesson 11: Standing Headlock Defenses
Lesson 12: Guillotine Defense (New)
Lesson 13: Standing Weapon Retention
Lesson 14: Edged Weapon Defense
Lesson 15: Tactical Vehicle Extraction
Tactical Gear Demo
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