Gracie Survival Tactics® (GST)

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GST Level 1

  • Intro Class
  • Lesson 1: Base Get-up
  • Lesson 2: Trap and Roll Escape
  • Lesson 3: Americana Armlock
  • Lesson 4: Positional Control
  • Lesson 5: Take the Back
  • Lesson 6: Vascular Neck Restraint Defenses
  • Lesson 7: Straight Armlock
  • Lesson 8: Clinch Control
  • Lesson 9: Body Fold Takedown
  • Lesson 10: Punch Block Series
  • Lesson 11: Guard Get-up
  • Lesson 12: Twisting Arm Handcuffing Procedure
  • Lesson 13: Positional Control
  • Lesson 14: Double Underhook Pass
  • Lesson 15: Triangle Defenses
  • Lesson 16: Elbow Escape
  • Lesson 17: Shrimp Escape
  • Lesson 18: Safe Draw
  • Lesson 19: Double Leg Takedown
  • Lesson 20: Front Headlock Defense
  • Lesson 21: Headlock Escape
  • Lesson 22: Hidden Arm Technique
  • Lesson 23: Kimura (Weapon Retention)
  • Tactical Gear Demo
  • The 4-Hour GST Training Module

GST Level 2

  • Intro Class
  • Lesson 1: Twisting Arm Control (2.0)
  • Lesson 2: Knee on Stomach
  • Lesson 3: Advanced Guard Get-up
  • Lesson 4: Back Mount Escape (2.0)
  • 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 (2.0)
  • Lesson 13: Standing Weapon Retention
  • Lesson 14: Edged Weapon Defense
  • Lesson 15: Tactical Vehicle Extraction
  • Tactical Gear Demo

The Gracie Survival Tactics (GST) instructor certification course is open to military and law enforcement professionals (reserve, guard, part-time duty acceptable). Corrections officers, EMTs and firefighters who are actively employed by a government agency are also eligible. On occasion, we make exceptions for select private security personnel to participate, but this must be approved in advance. When you arrive for training, you will be required to show a government issued badge and/or photo ID to verify eligibility. If you have questions about your eligibility, please contact the GST Program Director by sending an email to: or calling (817) 692-8303.

Level 1 GST Instructor Certification*

West Palm Beach, FL 
Postponed (Date: TBD)

Montgomery County, MD 
Postponed (Date: TBD)

Millersville, PA (TENTATIVE) 
Postponed (Date: TBD)

Park City, UT 
Postponed (Date: TBD)

Postponed (Date: TBD)

New Westminster, BC, CANADA (TENTATIVE) 
Postponed (Date: TBD)

Vacaville, CA 
Postponed (Date: TBD)

London, OH 
Postponed (Date: TBD)

Lakewood, WA (TENTATIVE) 
Postponed (Date: TBD)

Arlington, TX 
Postponed (Date: TBD)

Hanover, NH (TENTATIVE) 
Postponed (Date: TBD)

Westminster, CO (WAITLIST) 
October 26 - October 30, 2020
Location Information
Full Certification ($995): Email to reserve your spot
Recertification ($795): Email to reserve your spot

Omaha, NE 
December 7 - December 11, 2020
Location Information
Enroll by October 23, 2020 to receive 10% OFF on tuition.
Full Certification ($995) - ($895): Email to reserve your spot
Recertification ($795) - ($715): Email to reserve your spot

Orlando, FL (WAITLIST) 
December 14 - December 18, 2020
Location Information
Enroll by October 30, 2020 to receive 10% OFF on tuition.
Full Certification ($995) - ($895): Email to reserve your spot
Recertification ($795) - ($715): Email to reserve your spot

Columbus, OH (TENTATIVE) NEW Location Added!
January 11 - January 15, 2021
Location Information
Enroll by November 27, 2020 to receive 10% OFF on tuition.
Full Certification ($995) - ($895): Email to reserve your spot
Recertification ($795) - ($715): Email to reserve your spot

Decatur, IL (TENTATIVE) NEW Location Added!
January 25 - January 29, 2021
Location Information
Enroll by December 11, 2020 to receive 10% OFF on tuition.
Full Certification ($995) - ($895): Email to reserve your spot
Recertification ($795) - ($715): Email to reserve your spot

Torrance, CA 
March 15 - March 19, 2021
Location Information
Enroll by January 29, 2021 to receive 10% OFF on tuition.
Full Certification ($995) - ($895): Email to reserve your spot
Recertification ($795) - ($715): Email to reserve your spot

Level 2 GST Instructor Certification*

Raleigh, NC 
Postponed (Date: TBD)

Arlington, TX 
November 2 - November 6, 2020
Location Information
Enroll by September 18, 2020 to receive 10% OFF on tuition.
Full Certification ($995) - ($895): Email to reserve your spot
Recertification ($795) - ($715): Email to reserve your spot

Livingston County, MI 
March 1 - March 5, 2021
Location Information
Enroll by January 15, 2021 to receive 10% OFF on tuition.
Full Certification ($995) - ($895): Email to reserve your spot
Recertification ($795) - ($715): Email to reserve your spot
* The hands-on GST course tuition above includes free access to the entire course online on Gracie University (a $395 value).

Gracie Survival Tactics (GST) is a revolutionary defensive tactics system based on Gracie Jiu-Jitsu that incorporates time-tested techniques into an easy-to-learn system designed to help officers humanely prevail against larger and stronger opponents. Active-duty law enforcement professionals, as well as military personnel and first responders, can access the GST system online, via our streaming video course, or in-person at our five-day instructor certification courses.

GST Introductory Class with Ryron, Rener and Evandro

Almost a Century-Long Track Record
Gracie Jiu-Jitsu, also known as Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu or BJJ, was developed by Helio Gracie. 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 spent his long life testing and refining the techniques against all challengers.

After the UFC took the world by storm in 1993, people all over the world realized that Gracie Jiu-Jitsu was the only system that would give someone a realistic chance against a larger, more athletic opponent. Shortly thereafter, in response to requests by law enforcement officers, the Gracie Family extracted the simplest and most effective techniques to address the most common threat situations facing law enforcement professionals.

In the ensuing twenty years, GST has been taught to hundreds of law enforcement agencies (Local, State, and Federal), and the program continues to evolve every single day based on the feedback from those who put themselves in harm’s way every day and night. As Rener Gracie likes to say “In the beginning, we were teaching jiu-jitsu TO law enforcement; now we’re teaching jiu-jitsu FOR law enforcement.”

A Perfect Fit for Today’s Tactical, Legal & 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 law enforcement professional and suspect is vastly different from a street fight or a sport jiu-jitsu match. Yet, some defensive tactics programs make no distinction. GST is the fastest growing 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 these 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 by choice.
    As a 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 law enforcement professionals, we understand that victory isn’t achieved until you neutralize the threat and apprehended the suspect. 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. At the five-day instructor certification courses, the techniques are practiced in duty gear to ensure universal effectiveness. GST Banner

Educated "Bad Guys"
MMA is the fastest growing sport in the world, and the general public’s knowledge of basic fighting strategies and techniques has never been so high. There is a very real risk that a law enforcement professional will encounter a bad guy with some form of martial arts training. The GST program is designed to give law enforcement professionals – 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.

WATCH: Suspect Uses “Rear Choke” on Police Officer

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

  • Level 1 Instructor Certification consists of 23 lessons that address the most common scenarios that a law enforcement professional is likely to confront.
  • 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.

Online Courses: Level 1 and Level 2
Both GST courses, Level 1 and Level 2, are available online via streaming video. Although the online courses do not qualify you to teach GST in your department, 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 University 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 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.

The Gracie Survival Tactics (GST) instructor certification course is a 5-day “Train-the-Trainer” course during which all participants learn the techniques and teaching methodologies necessary to return home and effectively transfer the GST system to the other members of their organizations. Although no experience is necessary to participate in the 30-hour course, only the participants who meet the Gracie University quality standard for technical execution and instruction will qualify for certification.

Jiu-Jitsu Works PERFECTLY for Police Officer

"Reduced liability for me and my agency."
-Mark Ammerman, Police Officer in Virginia

“Without a doubt, the best training I’ve ever had in any subject."
-Danny Savery, Police Officer in Rhode Island

"Amazing course…especially for women with no previous experience."
-Danielle Desanctus, Police Officer in Virginia

The 5-Day Breakdown
Altogether, the GST course is five days long, with six hours of training per day, totaling 30 hours of instruction. Absolutely no experience is necessary to participate in the course, and the techniques are designed to work for anyone regardless of age, gender, or fitness level. The first three days of the GST course are dedicated to technical instruction. Course participants will be introduced to all GST techniques in a calm and cooperative setting, and then they will strengthen their confidence through a series of Reflex Development Drills. The fourth day of the course is dedicated entirely to instructor training. Course participants will learn the Gracie teaching methodologies that have been perfected over nearly a century. For most participants, this is the highlight of the week as the teaching methodologies can be applied to any skill, not just defensive tactics. The last day of the course is when the final evaluation takes place. Course participants are tested in their comprehension and execution of the techniques as well as their ability to teach the techniques using the Gracie methods.

Program of Instruction
Each course participant will receive a GST Program of Instruction (POI) which outlines all the techniques and teaching methods covered during the week. Not only will the POI help the course participants keep track of everything they learn throughout the week, but it will serve as an invaluable reference manual when the instructor returns home and is required to teach the GST techniques to their colleagues.

The GST Level 1 Instructor Certification Program consists of five modules:

  • Surprise Attack Counters: The surprise attack by a suspect who has feigned compliance is one of the most common and most dangerous situations. While most officers learn to recognize and prevent imminent attacks by employing a belt full of weapons, use of these weapons becomes very difficult and risky at close-range. The GST course specializes in defeating the worst-case, close-range attacks.
  • Survival & Escape Strategies: One of the worst-case scenarios for a law enforcement officer is to be taken to the ground by an aggressive subject. The GST course trains participants to use reliable leverage-based techniques to neutralize the initial barrage of strikes and escape from underneath the subject to regain a position of advantage. Additionally, since the techniques do not rely on strength, speed, or athleticism, they can be employed by smaller officers against larger, stronger subjects.
  • Weapon Retention Techniques A number of law enforcement officers who are killed in the line of duty are shot with their own weapon. The GST course teaches a series of simple yet highly-effective weapon retention principles that will defeat an attacker’s attempt to disarm the officer from any position in the fight, standing or on the ground.
  • Arrest & Control Procedures: In a physical altercation with an actively aggressive subject, the fight isn’t over until the threat has been neutralized and the subject is in handcuffs. The GST course features several highly effective handcuffing procedures that can be applied from any position in the fight and are effective in both solo and multi-officer arrest scenarios.
  • Gracie Teaching Methodologies: The GST course introduces participants to the time-tested Gracie teaching methodologies – perfected over nearly a century. Upon learning these skills, Gracie University certifies course participants to return to their organizations to share the invaluable survival skills with their colleagues.

Expert Testimony
Upon successful completion of the Level 1 GST Instructor Certification Course, we will issue you an instructor certificate valid for 18 months. During this period, if any excessive force allegations arise involving the use of the GST techniques, members of the Gracie family will be available to testify as “subject matter experts” on behalf of your department or agency. After the 18-month certification period expires, you must attend a 5-day recertification course in order to renew your certification. If you do not recertify, you may still practice/teach the techniques at your organization, but the Gracie family will not be able testify on your behalf in excessive force cases. The other significant benefit of recertification is the opportunity to learn new/modified techniques based on the feedback from users. That said, even if you are never able to recertify, you will benefit immensely from taking the GST course only once.

Free Online Access
As an actively certified GST instructor, you will be granted free access to the online GST Level 1 video library for the duration of your certification period. Anytime new techniques is added or existing ones are modified, you will be notified so you can incorporate them into your training program.

Level 2 Instructor Certification
Although the Level 1 GST course addresses the most common threat scenarios facing law enforcement professionals, there are several critical threat scenarios that simply don’t fit into the five days allocated for Level 1 training. We created the Level 2 GST course to address these threats. To qualify to attend the Level 2 GST course, participants must have completed Level 1 no more than two years prior to their Level 2 course participation date. Not only does Level 2 course completion certify participants as Level 2 GST instructors, but it also serves as Level 1 recertification. Additionally, GST Level 2 graduates are granted access to the Level 2 online video library for the duration of their certification period.

In addition to reviewing all the Level 1 GST techniques and teaching methodologies, here are some of the concepts that will be addressed in the Level 2 GST course:

  • CQB Strategies for Domestic Disturbance Calls
  • Two-Man Takedown / Handcuffing Procedure
  • Edged Weapon Defense (Standing & Ground)
  • Advanced Weapon Retention (Standing & Ground)
  • Rear Attack Defenses (Standing)
  • Submission Counters
  • Vehicle Extractions
  • Advanced Gracie Teaching Methodologies
  • And more…

WATCH: 2 Cops vs. 1 MMA Fighter

Instructor Certification vs. Online Course
Over the last few years, one of the most common question we get is: “Should I purchase the online-course or attend the five-day instructor certification course?”

The most important consideration is whether or not the GST course is intended for department-wide integration, or solely for personal use:

  • Full GST Integration: By all accounts, if you are currently a Defensive Tactics instructor in your department, and your goal is to implement some or all of the GST techniques into your existing DT program, you should do the live instructor certification course. Not only do you get online access for free, but the five-day course will officially qualify you to teach the entire program to your colleagues. As an actively certified instructor, the Gracie Famliy will be available to testify on behalf of your department if the need arises. Additionally, since you’ll be learning directly from a Gracie University head instructor, you will be able to ask questions and get answers through hands-on interaction that isn’t possible online.
  • Personal Use Only: If you aren’t a Defensive Tactics instructor, but you are an officer at a department or organization that does not provide effective hands-on solutions to keep you safe, then the online GST course is all you need (as well as a dedicated training partner to practice with). You will learn all the techniques, exactly as they are taught in the live GST course, but you won’t learn any of the teaching methodologies, so you won’t be qualified or authorized to officially teach them to other officers. Although the majority of GST instructor course attendees are DT instructors, about 15-20% of attendees are law enforcement officers who do not have any intentions to teach, but opted to do the live course anyways since it is the fastest way to learn the techniques and there are plenty of great training partners to learn with.

Contact & Registration
For National Security reasons, additional information requires our personal attention. Please contact the GST Director by sending an email to: or calling (817) 692-8303.

Ever since the US Army Rangers jumped on board in the mid 1990s, the Gracie techniques have been adopted by virtually every US federal law enforcement agency, hundreds of state, county and local agencies, as well as all five branches of the US Armed Forces. On this page you will find a complete list of all the organizations that have had their personnel certified in the Gracie Survival Tactics (GST) program over the years.

DTAC Instructors on GST

If your organization is GST certified, but is not listed below, please notify us via email at by providing the name of the individuals who were certified and the dates on which they completed the GST course.

WATCH: San Diego PD Goes Gracie


  • ATF - Alcohol Tobacco & Firearms
  • BIA - Bureau of Indian Affairs
  • CBP - U.S. Customs and Border Patrol
  • CIA - Central Intelligence Agency
  • DCIS - Defense Criminal Investigative Service
  • DEA - Drug Enforcement Administration
  • DHS - Department of Homeland Security
  • DLA - Defense Logistics Agency
  • DOE - Department of Energy
  • FAA - Federal Aviation Administration
  • FBI - Federal Bureau of Investigation
  • FLETC - Federal Law Enforcement Training Center (GA) & (NM)
  • HQ US Special Operations Command
  • ICE - Immigration & Customs Enforcement
  • INS - Immigration & Naturalization Service
  • US Air Force
  • US Air Force - TACP (Tactical Air Control Party)
  • US Army
  • US Army - JFK Special Warfare Center
  • US Army Delta
  • US Army Rangers
  • US Army Special Forces
  • US Border Patrol
  • US Bureau of Land Management
  • US Coast Guard
  • US Customs Service
  • US Department of Defense
  • US Federal Air Marshals
  • US Forest Service
  • US Justice Department
  • US Marine Corps
  • US Marshals
  • US Military Academy - West Point
  • US Navy
  • US Navy SEALs
  • US Pretrial Services
  • US Postal Service (Office of Inspector General)
  • US Probation
  • US Secret Service
  • US Secret Service (Presidential Protection Division)
  • US State Dept Diplomatic Security
  • US Supreme Court Police
  • VA - Department of Veteran Affairs
  • WHCA - White House Communications Agency

State Agencies

  • Alameda County Sheriff's Office (CA)
  • Alaska State Troopers (AK)
  • Alexandria Technical College-Law Enforcement Department (MN)
  • Arizona Game and Fish Department (AZ)
  • Benton County Sheriff's Office (AR)
  • Boone County Sheriff' Office (AR)
  • Bureau of Reclamation (WT)
  • Cabell County Sheriff's Department (WV)
  • California County Probation (CA)
  • California Department of Corrections (CA)
  • California Highway Patrol (CA)
  • Camden County Sheriff's Office (NJ)
  • Chatham County Sheriff's Office (GA)
  • Circuit Court of Cook County (IL)
  • Clark County (NV)
  • Coffee County Sheriff’s (GA)
  • Collier County Police Department (FL)
  • Collier County Sheriff’s Department (FL)
  • Collin County Sheriff Department (TX)
  • Connecticut Department of Corrections (CT)
  • County of San Mateo Probation (CA)
  • Curry County Sheriff's Office (OR)
  • CVG Airport Police (KY)
  • Department of Mental Health & Addiction Services (CT)
  • Department of Public Safety (TX)
  • Dorchester County Sheriff's Office (SC)
  • Eaton County Sheriff's Office (MI)
  • El Centro Police Department (CA)
  • Faulkner County Sheriff's Office (AR)
  • Fayette County Sheriff's Office (KY)
  • Federick County Sheriff's Office (MD)
  • Fresno County Probation Department (CA)
  • Georgia Law Enforcement Academy - No. Central (GA)
  • Harris County (TX)
  • Idaho State Police (ID)
  • Illinois Law Enforcement Commission - SW (IL)
  • Indiana Department of Corrections (IN)
  • Indiana Law Enforcement Academy (IN)
  • Indianapolis Department of Corrections (IN)
  • Jefferson County Sheriff's Department (CO)
  • Kenton County Police Department (KY)
  • Kentucky State Police (KY)
  • King County Sheriff's Office (WA)
  • LA County Probations Department (CA)
  • La Plata County Sheriff's (CO)
  • Lenawee County Sheriff's Office (MI)
  • Lincoln County Sheriff's Office (OR)
  • Livingston County Sheriff's Office (MI)
  • Los Angeles World Airport Police (CA)
  • Luna County Detention (NM)
  • Maricopa County (AZ)
  • Metropolitan Nashville Aiport Authority (TN)
  • Michigan State Police (MI)
  • Missoula County Sheriff’s Office (MT)
  • Missouri State Water Patrol (MO)
  • Montana Highway Patrol (MT)
  • Monterey Regional Airport Police (CA)
  • Multnomah County Sheriff’s Department (OR)
  • Muskegon County Sheriff (MI)
  • New Jersey Division of Criminal Justice (NJ)
  • New Mexico Army National Guard (NM)
  • New York State Police (NY)
  • Nisqually Public Safety (WA)
  • North Carolina State Highway Patrol (NC)
  • North Central Texas Council of Government (TX)
  • North Dakota Insurance Department - Fraud Unit (ND)
  • Oakland County Sheriff (MI)
  • Ohio State Highway Patrol (OH)
  • Oklahoma Highway Patrol (OK)
  • Oklahoma State Bureau of Narcotics (OK)
  • Orange County Park Rangers (CA)
  • Orange County Sheriff Department (CA)
  • Pennsylvania Police Department (PA)
  • Pennsylvania State Police Training Division (PA)
  • Pope County Sheriff's Office (AR)
  • Putnam County Sheriff's (FL)
  • Ramsey County Sheriff Department (MN)
  • Riverside County Sheriff's Office (CA)
  • Roanoke County Sheriff's Office (VA)
  • Sacramento County Sheriff’s Dept (CA)
  • Salem County Correctional Facility (NJ)
  • San Benito County Sheriff's Office (CA)
  • San Juan County Police Academy (NM)
  • San Francisco Police Department (CA)
  • San Bernadino Sheriff's Department (CA)
  • San Diego Sheriff's Office (CA)
  • San Francisco Sheriff's Department (CA)
  • Santa Barbara County Sheriffs Department (CA)
  • Santa Clara County Sheriff's Office (CA)
  • Shelby County Sheriff's Office (TN)
  • Siskiyou County Sheriff (CA)
  • South Carolina Criminal Dept of Public Safety (SC)
  • South Carolina Criminal Justice Academy (SC)
  • Southwestern Illinois Law Enforcement Commission (IL)
  • St. Lawrence County Sheriff Department (NY)
  • St. Louis County Police Academy (MO)
  • St. Mary's County Sheriff's Office (MD)
  • Sullivan County Sheriffs Office (TN)
  • Summit County Sheriff (OH)
  • Texas Department of Public Safety (TX)
  • Troup County Sheriff's Office (GA)
  • Ventura County Police & Sheriffs Training Academy (CA)
  • Ventura County Sheriff's Office (CA)
  • West Virginia State Police (WV)
  • Wood County Sheriff's Office (OH)
  • Woodbury County Sheriff (IA)


  • Corrections
  • Criminal Justice (Judges)
  • FFDOs - Federal Flight Deck Officers (Commercial Aviation)
  • First Responders (EMTs, Fire Fighters & Paramedics)
  • Flight Attendants (Commercial Aviation)
  • Major Amusement Park Security
  • Pilots (Commercial & Private Aviation)
  • Security Agencies (Private & Executive)


  • Australia - Melbourne Police Department, Special Ops and more
  • Canada- Winnipeg Police Department and more
  • Canada - Royal Canadian Mounted Police
  • Europe - Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe and more
  • Israeli Security Agency (ISA) & G.S.S. Protection & Security Division
  • Republic of Korea - United Nations Command Security Battalion - Joint Security Area
  • United Kingdom - British Police - Special Ops. Group and more
  • United Nations Command - Joint Security Area
  • Iraq, Camp Victory US Army Base - Multi-National Corps.

City Agencies

  • Aberdeen Police Department (MD)
  • Annapolis City Police Department (MD)
  • Atlantic City Police Department (NJ)
  • Abilene Police Department (TX)
  • Adrian Police Department (MI)
  • Albany County Probation Department (NY)
  • Alhambra Police Department (CA)
  • Ambridge Police Department (PA)
  • Arlington Police Department (TX)
  • Atlanta Police Department (GA)
  • Attica Police Department (IN)
  • Balch Springs Police Department (TX)
  • Bart Police Department (CA)
  • Bartlesville Police Department (OK)
  • Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) Police Department (CA)
  • Beaver County Juvenile Probation (PA)
  • Beaver Falls Police Department (PA)
  • Bellevue Police Department (WA)
  • Bergen County Police Department (NJ)
  • Berkeley Police Department (CA)
  • Berkeley Public Safety (CA)
  • Biloxi Police Department (MS)
  • Bloomfield Township Police Department (MI)
  • Bloomington Police Department (IN)
  • Bristol Township Police Department (PA)
  • Burbank Police Department (CA)
  • Calexico Police Department (CA)
  • Camden City Police Department (NJ)
  • Carrollton Police Department (TX)
  • Cedar Hill City Police Department (TX)
  • Cedar Park Police Department (TX)
  • Central Michigan University Police Department (MI)
  • Centralia Police Department (WA)
  • Charleston Police Department (WV)
  • Charlestown Police Department (IN)
  • Charlottesville Police Department (VA)
  • Chesapeake Police Department (VA)
  • Chicago Police Department (IL)
  • Chico Police Department (CA)
  • Chula Vista Police Department (CA)
  • Cincinnati Airport Police Department (OH)
  • Citrus Heights Police Department (CA)
  • City of Beacon Police Department (NY)
  • City of Conroe Police Department (TX)
  • City of Delano, Corrections (CA)
  • City of Delphi Police Department (IN)
  • City of Killeen Police Department (TX)
  • City of Las Cruces Police Department (NM)
  • City of Montgomery Police Department (AL)
  • City of Watanga Police Department (OK)
  • Clarksville Police Department (IN)
  • Clovis Police Department (CA)
  • Colleyville Police Department (TX)
  • Columbus Police Department (OH)
  • Coconino County Sheriff’s Office (AZ)
  • Conroe Police Department (TX)
  • Conway Police Department (NH)
  • Cook County Sheriff's Police Department (IL)
  • Corona Police Department (CA)
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Asst. Chief on GST and the “Deadly Force Dilemma”
“One of the best experiences of my life.”

Contact & Registration
For National Security reasons, additional information requires our personal attention. Please contact the GST Director by sending an email to: or calling (817) 692-8303.

Even though GST is growing at an unprecedented rate, we are always looking to partner with new hosting departments/organizations to continue making the course available in as many territories as possible.

This page is intended to detail the benefits, eligibility requirements and the expectations so that you can make an informed decision as to whether or not hosting is the right option for your organization.

How to Host a GST Law Enforcement Course (for Free!)


  • The host will earn one (1) complimentary slot for every 10 paid slots in the course. It is not uncommon for host agencies to earn 5-8 complimentary slots in a single course. Keep in mind that most or all of the paid slots typically come from outside agencies, so it’s very common for the hosting agency to have no out of pocket expense.
  • By becoming a host in a new territory, the GST course becomes available to countless officers in the region who would have never otherwise had access to the system.
  • It is common for a GST host to form bonds with many fellow Law Enforcement professionals across the nation as they become part of the large GST family. These bonds often extend beyond DT training as GST agencies commonly partner with each other in a variety of LE subjects/courses.
  • Gracie University does not charge the host agency any fees, unless the host wishes to purchase additional slots beyond the number of complimentary slots that they earn.


  • The hosting organization must be a first-responder government agency (federal/local/state/tribal/county/college police/hospital police/etc.).
  • There must not be an active GST host already established in the region (contact to inquire about availability of the region). If there is no established host in the region, then the first agency that can complete the verification process of Step 1 will get first shot at being the official GST host in the region.
  • Host’s facilities must have a minimum of 2000 square feet of continuous mat space. All of the mat space must be in one large room such as a gymnasium. The mats and the facility can be rented or borrowed if not owned by the agency. Often times agencies will ask to use the facility from a local high school or BJJ academy if they don’t have enough space/mats at the police academy.
  • Host’s facilities must have basic amenities such as restrooms and water fountains.

For a prospective host that is both interested and qualified, here are the four steps they will need to complete to bring the GST course to fruition:

Step 1: The First 15
Send us a list of 15 individuals who are seriously interested, and qualified, to attend the prospective GST course hosted by your organization. The following individuals are qualified to attend:

  • First Responders who are employed by government agencies.
  • Active members of the Military and Military reserves.
  • Corrections officers who are employed by government agencies.

“Seriously interested” is defined as someone who states that they are “highly likely” (90% chance or greater) to attend the course if your agency was to host it.

This list does not include the complimentary slots that the host will earn.

Once the list of 15 is compiled, the prospective host will send it to Someone from Gracie University will then vet the list. It is highly recommended to gather more than 15 as it is common for 3-5 of the list to not verify as they advise Gracie University that their status has changed and they will not be likely to attend (this is usually due to: injury, budgetary changes, command changes, staffing shortages, life changes, etc.)

Once 15 individuals are verified as seriously interested and qualified, Gracie University and the agency will choose a mutually acceptable course date at least 8 months from the date of the completion of this step. Gracie University will then put a temporary hold on that course date (maintaining the hold on the date is contingent on the completion of the subsequent steps).

Step 2: 40 Serious Leads
The host needs to provide a list of 40 serious leads. This is a continuation of the first step, and the first 15 will count towards the list of 40 qualified, seriously-interested individuals. The agency is usually given 6 weeks to achieve this step. This is often reported as the most challenging step of the process. Once the 40 has been sent in to Gracie University and verified, they can move to step 3.

Step 3: 20 Committed
20 individuals must either pay the tuition or send Gracie University a purchase order. Please note, regular tuition is $995 however if paid at least 45 days early, it is discounted to $895. The standard time frame given to complete this step is 45 days from the previous step.

Step 4: 30 Committed
30 individuals must have paid the tuition or sent Gracie University a purchase order. The standard time frame given for completion of this step is 30 days from the previous step. Once 30 people have paid the full tuition, we will add the new GST course to the publicized list of upcoming courses so that officers all over the country will be notified and invited to attend. When this happens, enrollment typically doubles or triples before the course takes place.

It's a fair amount of work to get the first one going, but almost every host who successfully completes their first GST course, describes it as challenging but well worth it. In fact, after the first course is complete, almost all hosts become repeat hosts for several years thereafter, some agencies have been hosting annual GST courses for over 13 years!

After hosting several successful GST Level 1 courses, the host can apply to host a GST Level 2 seminar at their location.

If you're interested in hosting, we look forward to working with you. If you have any questions, or you'd like to confirm the availability of your territory before getting started, please contact us at

For full GST Program details, click here.

10 Questions Before Your First GST Course

  1. What’s the difference between the GST techniques and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu?
    The GST techniques are VERY different from Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. First and foremost, each and every technique has been modified for military and law enforcement applicability. Some of the main adaptations include:
    • Weapon retention and awareness– All of the GST techniques have been adapted to address weapon retention. In regular jiu-jitsu practice there is no need to be conscious of weapons on your belt. However in Law Enforcement every fight is an “armed encounter” as the officer has multiple weapons on his/her duty belt that must not be taken by the suspect.
    • Adapted for improved mobility– A common concern about jiu-jitsu is that a law enforcement officer’s duty-belt and tactical gear inhibits their ability to move and function. GST is specifically designed to accommodate the reduced mobility experienced by law enforcement professionals when wearing tactical gear.
    • There is no “tap-out” on the street– Since an actual law enforcement call doesn’t end with a “tap out”, all the GST techniques have been customized to end with the suspect in handcuffs.
  2. How is the five-day GST course structured and what are the objectives we can accomplish in those five days?
    The first three days consist of learning and drilling the techniques as well as the principles and mindset of the system. After the maximum assimilation of those first three days, the student spends two days immersed in teaching mastery. This is important because the techniques of the first three days are only valuable for your organization if you become a highly proficient teacher and can effectively administer the information that you will absorbed from us. Over 80% of the positive feedback from GST graduates is comprised of how the teaching mastery portion of the course exceeded their expectations.
  3. What if I have no previous grappling experience?
    You came to the right place! In the private sector, one of the main reasons for our success is that we know how to safely and effectively teach jiu-jitsu to the beginner. We apply this same methodology to our GST courses bringing a cooperative atmosphere that is fun, effective and encouraging for people with no previous experience.
  4. Is GST Medically and Legally reviewed?
    We are proud to say that it is. Over the years, we have had several medical professionals and attorneys attend the actual course to scrutinize it from a liability, safety, and best practices perspective as it pertains to Law Enforcement. The reviews are available upon request.
  5. What is the difference between GST Level 1 and GST Level 2?
    If we had to generalize, we would say that the difference can be summed up with phrase “Independence vs. Interdependence.” The main goal for GST Level 1 is “independence." Which is for an officer, who is operating solo, to have the ability to survive and control a suspect effectively. On the other hand, the Level 2 course focuses, among other things, on officers operating interdependently with one another as a team. This includes two officer takedowns, multiple officer control strategies, and vehicle extractions. For many years there was only a GST Level 1 course. However, throughout the years we received many requests for various law enforcement-specific situations and contingencies that were not addressed in Level 1. However, we were not willing to sacrifice the Level 1 techniques in order to make room for additional techniques to address the "what-if" scenarios. Eventually, when we had accumulated enough contingency requests to warrant developing a new course, we created GST Level 2. Keep in mind, GST Level 1 completion is a prerequisite for the Level 2 course because an officer must first be able to help themselves before they can be effective in helping another officer.
  6. How long are the certification periods for each course, and what are the benefits of holding a current certificate?
    The certification for Level 1 is 18 months. The certification for Level 2 is 24 months. The benefits of having a currently certified GST instructor in your organization include:
    1. Gracie University expert witnesses available to testify on behalf of the department in allegations of excessive force involving the use of GST.
    2. Free access to the GST online course that corresponds to the GST certification. Current Level 1 instructors will have access to all the Level 1 lessons. Level 2 instructors will have access to the whole GST system comprised of the 23 Level 1 and 15 Level 2 lessons.
    3. Currently certified Level 2 instructors need only to attend Level 2 courses to maintain their certifications. In addition to certifying the student on the Level 2 lessons, the Level 2 course also re-certifies the student on the Level 1 lessons.
    4. Currently certified Level 2 instructors can attend any Level 1 course for free (space permitting). They will be acting in an assistant instructor capacity. Although it doesn’t serve as a re-certification, it’s a great way to make more connections, learn more about the system by getting the immersive Level 1 experience again, learn the latest updates on the techniques and develop your teaching skills by teaching alongside the GST head instructors. Please note: although free, pre-registration is required for Level 1 participation to ensure there is sufficient space for Level 2 assistants.
  7. What do I wear, and who do I partner with?
    On the mat we don’t wear shoes for sanitary and safety reasons. Clothing options include: rash guards, t-shirts, fight shorts, spats, BDU/6-pocket pants, or gi pants. Close to the end of the week, the instructor will let you know when to bring your duty-belt. Your duty belt should have a training firearm -if you carry one on the job. If you only carry pepper spray, Taser, or a different tool, you're invited to bring an inert/training version of that tool. Please no hazardous or live weapons of any kind in the training area. For those that carry a full duty-belt or “Sam Brown,” its important also have your under-belt, keepers and BDU’s/six-pocket pants with them so that the duty-belt stays secure on your waist in a realistic manner during training. Our protocol regarding training partners, is to have more advanced students paired with less knowledgeable students. We also permit those from the same department to partner with one another, although we may shuffle the partners so that everyone gets to work with a variety of body-types for a productive training experience. Regardless of who you partner with, the overwhelming experience is one of maximum collaboration in a non-competitive atmosphere.
  8. How do we qualify to teach law enforcement if we ourselves are not law enforcement officers?
    Although we are not law enforcement officers, we fully acknowledge and respect the serious nature and inherent risks of your job. While we do not know every aspect of your job, we do have a full understanding of body mechanics and leverage. Based on years of feedback from law enforcement, we can apply our expertise and skill sets of comfort under stress, maximum control, safety, and non-violence to circumstances that are realistic to law enforcement. The constant collaboration and sharing between the GST instructors and the thousands of law enforcement professionals that we teach every year results in a continuous and never-ending refinement of the system for our clients. This is why GST is one of the fastest growing Defensive Tactics systems in the country.
  9. What if my command staff does not sponsor my participation in GST?
    We are fully aware of the challenges that officers face with this. This is the main reason we do the breakdown videos. We want to educate the police leadership on the need for officers to have access to better training. We fully realize that the videos may not be enough. We are in constant communication with officers from many agencies and receive reports on how they overcame this challenge in their respective departments. We then will pass that information along to officers, from other departments, who are facing the same challenges. We also have various materials that may help officers with their approval process. In particular, we have an article, "9 Strategies on Implementing GST at Your Agency,” that serves as a guide for officers who are engaged in this struggle. Also, many officers have had success once they graduated from the course and returned to their agencies to showcase what they have learned. The teaching methodologies that are taught in the last two days of the course, also help officers do outstanding demonstrations for their command staffs to gain approval in implementing the material to the rest of their agency. Officers have even been reimbursed by their agencies for their GST tuition after their command staff approved the implementation GST. Finally, if your agency will not fund your training, email us at as we have self-funding discounts available. We do not believe that money should stand in the way of you attending GST!
  10. Can I host a GST course at my Department?
    Yes! In our quest to make GST accessible to as many law enforcement officers as possible, we are always looking to establish new hosting relationships. As an incentive for your department to work with us, we will grant free course participation for the defensive tactics instructors in your department. If there are no established GST hosts already in your territory, we encourage you to begin the hosting process and bring GST to your region. If you are the training coordinator or the defensive tactics instructor in your organization, please click here to learn more about the benefits of hosting a GST course at your department.