Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is a specialized combat sport and martial art system that mainly focuses on grappling with specific emphasis on ground fighting. It also involves ground control positions, takedowns, and throws.
During the fight, the tactics can likewise be chokes and joint locks, using principles/methods of leverage to allow a weaker individual to subdue a more powerful opponent. A conceptual understanding of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu creates even more effective martial artists.
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is founded on the idea that a weaker, smaller person can accurately defend itself against a heavier, stronger, and bigger opponent. This is usually done by using leverage, technique, and most importantly, taking the battle/fight to the ground.
Once taken to the ground, a person can apply chokeholds and joint locks to defeat the opponent. Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu training is also used in self-defense situations as well as for the sport grappling tournaments.
History and Origin
The story of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu or BJJ starts in Japan where the earliest form of Jiu-Jitsu was specifically developed for use of battlefields by Japanese samurai. The worriers who used to engage in the armed battles on horsebacks, developed this method as their last line of defense in the situation that they found themselves afoot and disarmed. Nonetheless, the heavy gear and armor worn by the samurai fighters limited/restricted their joint locks, mobility, and making chokes.
Jiu-Jitsu means “gentle art.” A major revolutionary development took in the Judo form, which was a newly evolved style. It was Jigoro Kano who created a novel style of martial arts from the traditional Jiu-Jitsu fighting system, which he called the Kodokan Judo. In the year 1897, Mitsuyo Maeda began his training with Kano.
Moreover, he went to Brazil to establish a Japanese colony. Later, he met Gastao Gracie who coordinated with Maeda to build and modify that colony. In return of this amazing favor, Maeda taught him this new form of fighting style. From these basic techniques and practices, Gracie’s family started evolving the Kodokan judo method to Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.
Apart from Brazil and neighboring countries, millions of people from other parts of the world including the United States, Kuwait, United Arab Emirates, Torrance (California), and Poland also participate in this form of martial arts. It is worth knowing that these countries have a large number of academies and institutions dedicated to Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu in order to teach, demonstrate, organize, as well as popularize martial art.
The grading system in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
As far as other martial art systems are concerned, the development and progress of a learner or student are typically marked with a series of color belts. It is important to know that unlike other martial art systems where a Black Belt actually marks proficiency of a person in a style, in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, the Black Belt rank is conferred to people who have mastered the skill or art of this particular fighting system.
Likewise, the belts in order (descending) are Black, Brown, Purple, Blue, and White. Often, institutions award 4 stripes for white through the brown belts. Then, Black Belts progress through some degrees usually awarded one degree every three years. It is worth noting that this one-degree award is based on teaching ability, skill level, and contribution to the art, which is up to a 10th degree.
Similarly, there are specified classifications for Black Belt instructors and fighters. Instructors have red bands on their belts whereas fighter has white bands on their belts. Usually, Black Belt teachers are not allowed to endorse or promote others up to the Black Belt rank. It is because they need to receive their first degree.
Moreover, the grades or ranks for kids are different. For instance, higher ranks and blue belts have age requirements, so kids have grades starting with white color, yellow, orange and green. All these belts have 4 stripes and are utilized until the age of 16.
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is also famous for its conservatism and informality in regards to encouraging students to the higher grade. This is primarily due to the style and type of martial arts that it is.
What is the martial arts philosophy of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu?
The concept and philosophy of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu are to promote a more positive way of life through wellbeing, healthy living, and experiencing harmony within your mind and body.
When it comes to the Tripod principle, it is extremely simple in theory. How? Well, Jiu-Jitsu like a tripod stool is mainly based on three pillars.
These are base, posture, and structure! In addition, staying in line with the tripod stool analogy, if one takes away one of these basic pillars, the stability of the structure is weakened.
Also, take away another pillar and it can hardly stay upright, if at all. Likewise, if one takes away all three pillars, the tripod stool will seize to exist.
What are the main differences between Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and other Martial Arts?
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is different from other martial arts. Unlike Tae Kwon Do and Karate, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu primary focus in on ground grappling and fighting.
Nonetheless, surprisingly to many, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu has emerged as an elite martial art, which has strongly dominated the world of MMA. Contrary to other martial art methods that only instruct stand up techniques, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu teaches how to get involved in the competition and control your challenger from being on your feet to overpowering him on the ground.
The statistical data shows 90-95% of fights/battles going to the ground, it is very much obvious that a person who has the best ground skills will have great advantages than his opponent.
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu or Gracie Jiu-Jitsu was particularly developed as a formidable type of self-defense in one of the dangerous and toughest cities in the world “Rio de Janeiro.”
In contrast to martial arts, for instance, Karate, which relies on hard strikes and power to do significant damage to the opponent, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu can be used by anyone of any weight against a stronger and larger opponent.
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu lays emphasis on techniques and strategies instead of brute strength. In addition, it takes a lot of energy and effort to beat down a strong opponent than to submit or choke one out using a joint lock. This makes Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu a great martial arts system for men, women, young people, teens, and kids alike.
What type of training, techniques is Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu about?
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu specializes in transferring the opponent to the ground and using fighting techniques on the ground. This style of struggle includes painful techniques and strangulation, with the help of which you can force the enemy to surrender (jiu-jitsu sport) or neutralize him (jiu-jitsu combat).
It is believed that a big and strong person loses most of his advantages during a fight on the ground.
There are two main categories of techniques in Brazilian jiu-jitsu: levers (nodes) and strangulation. The creation of a lever (knot) is the isolation of an opponent’s limb to a certain position of the body, which will force the joint to move in a straight line (rotates along its axis) outside its normal range of motion.
With increasing pressure on the limb-lever, the opponent who failed to avoid this position gives up. He may give up orally or pat the opponent several times (clapping on his own is dangerous because the enemy may not hear).
A less popular technique is pinching, in which the opponent’s muscle shrinks between the bones (usually the lower leg and wrist), or the pinching, which expands, divides the joint, causing significant pain to the opponent. These techniques are usually not allowed in competitions due to the high risk of injury.
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Sports specializes in wrestling prior to delivery without the use of strikes, aided by a training method that allows practitioners to act at full speed and in full force, as in real competition.
Training methods include training techniques that are implemented on a non-resisting partner: limited sparring, usually called positional training, where only certain techniques or sets of methods are used; full sparring is also used, in which every opponent tries to use any allowed technique. Improving physical condition is also an important part of training in many clubs.
Who is Brazilian Jiu Jitsu for?
Anyone: men, women, and even kids as young as 4 years old can practice this fighting system. Since it, unique art that is specifically designed for smaller, weaker practitioners to subdue much stronger and larger opponents, virtually anyone of any age, size, or sex can practice the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Practitioners use a lot of strategic techniques in order to overpower their opponents. Moreover, a student would probably come across various techniques as well as concepts in just a few years of training.
What are the main Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu organizations and Federations in the world?
Some of the most popular Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu organization in the world are 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu, Alliance Jiu-Jitsu, Brazilian Top Team, Black House (MMA), Gracie Humaitá, Gracie Barra, “Ju-Jitsu Federation – Philippines,” Jiu-Jitsu Federation – Rio de Janeiro, Universidade da Luta, Paraestra, Checkmat etc.
What are the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu organizations and Federations in Australia?
There are many Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu organizations and federations in Australia. Among the popular ones are Australian Jujitsu Federation, Australian Ju-Jitsu Association, Relson Gracie Australia, BJJ Sydney, and Australian Federation of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.
Are there Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu competitions?
Yes, there are many competitions in the field of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. These are Asian Open Championship, National Jiu-Jitsu Championship, Jiu-Jitsu No-Gi Championship, Eddie Bravo Invitational, Grapplers Quest, European Jiu-Jitsu Championship, Pan Jiu-Jitsu No-Gi, American Grappling Association, World Jiu-Jitsu Championship, Polaris Pro Grappling etc.
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is a fighting style that mainly focuses on grappling and ground fighting. It is considered one of the highly effective martial art systems as it enables master a heavier or stronger person without hurting him with effective and proper execution of its techniques.
Training Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu allows people to enhance their self-esteem, confidence, concentration, discipline, coordination, and physical conditioning, all have an amazing time and creating great lasting bonds of respect and friendship with instructors and fellow trainees.
Anyone can enroll in training institutions to learn and practice professionally.
For those who are seeking self-defense strategies in real-life as well as those who want to participate in professional sports, the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is an amazing martial art system for them.