Often referred to by experts and fans alike as one of the best pound-for-pound MMA fighters today, Georges "Rush" St-Pierre, also known as “GSP,” is a Canadian professional mixed martial artist and UFC world champion who holds black belts in both Kyokushin karate and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.
As a child St. Pierre was bullied for years by older schoolmates leading his father to introduce him to Kyokushin karate at age 7, “but life isn’t like a movie,” according to St. Pierre. “You can do all the karate you want, when you’re eight or nine-years-old and they’re 12, when you’re alone and there’s three of them, you can’t do anything. That’s the reality.”
Already a 2nd dan Kyokushin karate black belt at 12, St. Pierre dedicated himself to martial arts and training throughout his teen years. After seeing Royce Gracie fight in 1993 at UFC 1, St. Pierre knew exactly what he wanted to do with his life and how he was going to reach those goals. By investing all his energy and all his time at becoming a better version of himself, St. Pierre discovered a simple truth: never stopping helps reach goals.
St. Pierre grew as a person and as a fighter as he added fighting disciplines such as boxing, wrestling, and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu to his karate background and competed in his first amateur bout at age 16. He won that match, and continued his steady improvement. In 2006 he became the UFC Welterweight Champion. He lost the title in 2007 but subsequently regained it in front of his hometown fans of Montreal in 2008.
Along his career, St. Pierre accomplished numerous firsts and awards including: the all-time most consecutive welterweight title defenses, three-time consecutive Canadian Athlete of the Year Awards (’08 - ’10) by Rogers Sportsnet, Fighter of the Year Awards ('09) by Sports Illustrated, World MMA Awards, MMAPayout, Inside MMA and MMAJunkie, the Most Dangerous Man of the Year by the Spike Guys Choice Awards ('10) and the MMA Fighter of the Year Award (’08) by Black Belt Magazine.
St. Pierre is the author of the New York Times bestseller The Way of the Fight. Released in 2013, the book shares the lessons he's learned on the way to the top.
Later that year, St. Pierre officially announced that he had decided to vacate the title and take some time off from MMA. He has not ruled out a return to the ring in the future. GSP is based in Montreal.