He began training at the age of 5 with his cousins, "The Gracie Family". In an interview when asked about his exact relationship with the Gracies Rigan said "My mother's sister married the founder of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Carlos Gracie." Like all children took it more as a game than really as something he wanted to do for the rest of his life. He started to take training and competing more seriously at the age of 14. This is the time where Rigan would start to train everyday on the mat. From the age of 14 through 21, he won the Brazilian National Championships every year and every belt division. He amassed a record of 365 wins and 2 losses in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu competition. He also created a record by having 19 matches in one day and finishing all of them by submission. He remains unbeaten in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu in more than 13 years of competition. His training sessions were all very technical and intensive under the eye of his two instructors Rolls Gracie and Carlos Gracie Jr. He also trained with his other cousins such Rickson Gracie, Rorian Gracie, Rillion Gracie, his uncle Carlos Gracie Sr, and his brothers.