There are plenty of iOS Jiu Jitsu apps out there. Want to learn NoGi Jiu Jitsu? There’s an app for that. Want to learn the Spider-Guard? There’s an app for that. However, a lot of apps are technique oriented. You don’t get the bigger picture. The Gracie360 app gives you more of a lifestyle look into Gracie Jiu Jitsu.
Mobotory, the company who publishes the Gracie360 app, promotes the app on their website, “The official Gracie Jiu-Jitsu App. Discover the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu pioneered by the Gracie family, find new recipes from the Gracie Diet, watch videos with breakdowns from the latest UFC fights, learn new moves and more. Available at the iTunes App Store.” Sounds great! Lets check it out!
When you first open the app you come to the main screen. It’s clean and crisp. A nice news feed scrolls across the top, clearly defined links, all the aesthetics the eye could possibly want. Upon closer examination, however, the news feed isn’t actually publishing any new news. Just ads for you to check out their GracieKids and GracieDiet website. Shame on you, Gracie360!
The Quick Lessons category has promise, providing MMA Breakdowns, Gracie Philosophy, and One Minute Moves. The MMA Breakdowns are good. Really good. The Gracie brothers do a great job dissecting techniques that UFC fans will love! The One Minute Lessons and Gracie Philosophy are great too. The Gracie’s really know their stuff. Their smart, energetic, charismatic, and articulate. I can’t recommend their training material enough! The breakdowns are old, though. It’s starting to look like the app isn’t updated. I know the brothers have done more breakdowns. I’ve seen them on their website and in their monthly e-mails.
Moving to News and Seminars, again, not updated. What’s going on here, guys? Where are the updated seminars you just released via e-mail? I see them on your website. Why don’t you have them linked? And why are seminars from February still listed? Even the store seems out of date. You can find items on the app that are no longer available on the website? So can I, or can I not, buy a pair of Jiu Jitsu rank shorts from the Gracie’s? I don’t know. Someone please tell me!!
The Gracie Timeline is probably the best part about this app. It provides you with an easy to read background of the Gracie family. Well worth the download and read, if just for that simple piece.
Again, though, the more I move through this app the more it feels like it’s been ignored. It’s a brand new app! I don’t get it. Where are the promised updates? IF the Gracie’s want to make this an app that people are going to want to download and enjoy, it’s got to become relevant to the user. As it stands right now it’s simply not functional. The thing that really separates the Gracie brothers from the rest of the pack is their recognition and adoption of the utility of the internet. With the creation of Gracie University they really brought Jiu Jitsu into a modern world. Gracie University is the trunk of their digital tree. Everything else has to branch from there.
For the Gracie360 app to be relevant it has to link back to Gracie University. Users should be able to access their individual accounts and watch techniques they’ve purchased on the web on their mobile devices. The news feed should provide news, not ads. The News and Seminars section should be updated! You know where a good place to advertise your latest updates would be? Yup, in the news feed across the top of the home screen. The store should be interlinked and new products should be available while old ones gracefully exit. These are common sense applications of a digital product in an age where users demand more!
Overall, I give the app a 3 out of 5 stars. It has potential to be a really useful training tool and provides enough unique material that it’s worth the free download. Just remember, you’re getting what you pay for.