His interest in Martial arts started aged 8 when he and his twin brother started Judo and continued for 8 years. He competed regularly and was a member of the Essex squad. School exams, work then young family followed but on seeking a return to judo he found ‘traditional’ Jiu-jitsu. Still loads of throwing but plenty of striking and nasty locks and strangles. For the next 12yrs he graduated to 2nd dan. In that time he also returned to Judo, reached 2nd dan and also began teaching.
By this time Rodger was introduced to BJJ at Vie Health Club by one of their fitness instructors, Eduardo Pereira. He had put some mats together in the studio with a few students. Ed was a blue belt (now black and teaching back in Brazil) and revealed to me the gulf at that time (2006) between Judo and BJJ groundwork.
In 2007 Vie Health Club formally teamed up with Roger Gracie’s. In that formative year Roger Gracie’s Vie Academy instructors included Helio Pereira (now teaching in Angola), Luciano Christovam (now teaching at RGA HQ) and then Cesar Lima (now Head Instructor of Grand Union Jiu-jitsu). Rodger was awarded his Blue belt after a few months (privilege of being a judo black belt) to enable him to enter then win his first competition, 2007 SENI Gracie Invitational.
In Dec 2015 he was awarded his black belt by Roger Gracie and Cesar Lima, then in 2018 he received his 1st degree. Rodger still trains with Cesar Lima at Grand Union Jiu-jitsu Gymbox.