Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is something different. While it is a martial art, it is also a sport, a mental challenge and a way of life. No wonder its popularity is growing so fast.
Perhaps you’re curious about signing up for classes but you don’t know much about how it all works. This article gives you the basics. Read through and then come to visit us at the United Martial Arts academy! See you soon.
What is Brazilian Jiu Jitsu?
Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ) is a sport and self-defence technique that entirely relies on grappling and leverage. Using no punches, kicks or weapons, it is considered a non-aggressive form where the aim is to pin an opponent rather than knock them out.
It therefore relies more on training, problem solving and practice than speed, instinct and power. Some even call it “human chess”.
The style split from judo in the late 1800s and underwent dramatic progress in the mid-20th Century led by several members of Brazil’s prominent Gracie family.
Will Brazilian Jiu Jitsu get me in shape?
Yes, but like any exercise, it take time and effort. However, BJJ is considered ‘functional fitness’ which means the positive physical aspects of the sport are incidental to its pursuit.
In other words, improved all-round fitness comes naturally from practicing BJJ. Because it relies so much on solving physical problems using applied isometric strength, BJJ teaches you to move and use every part of your body with control. There is no arm day or leg day – it’s holistic.
The natural upshot is weight loss, greater strength through a wide range of movement and better overall mobility.
How do belts work in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu?
Like most other martial arts, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu works on a belt system that appears simple yet has many subtleties.
The basic explanation is that all beginners, regardless of age, start with a white belt and graduate through various colours and over many years towards a black belt – the point at which they are considered proficient. Beyond this, there are red belts with black or white stripes signifying levels of mastery.
The solid red belt at the very top is ceremonial and no longer awarded.
How do you get a BJJ belt?
Progression through the belt ranks depends on knowledge, skill, application and an official set of qualifying periods.
Even if you have waited through the qualifying period for the next rank, it is still up to an instructor to judge whether you have the skill and mindset to advance. Progression is not guaranteed simply by trying hard, paying fees or attending classes for a certain amount of time.
The rules of graduation hold that 19 is the minimum possible age for attaining a black belt.
Is going up a belt guaranteed in BJJ?
Only the beginner’s belt is guaranteed. Unfortunately, many martial arts academies are heavily pressured by students (and their parents) to award higher belt ranks as tokens of effort or good conduct.
This practice of ‘sandbagging’ or ‘belt inflation’ can put these students in situations where their lack of skill and awareness is unsafe for themselves and others – especially in competitions.
United Martial Arts is highly conscientious and does not guarantee that a student will progress in belt rank. However, through a modicum of persistence and hard work, almost every student does.
Where can I learn Brazilian Jiu Jitsu in Perth?
United Martial Arts (UMA) in Cockburn Central, Perth, is a leading academy offering a range of martial arts programs. And Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is the latest addition to its classes.
Taught by fully accredited practitioners, these different classes suit all ages and experience levels. From kids needing an outlet for all their energy, right through to people who already have BJJ experience and are looking for a new place to roll – everyone can find a spot with UMA.
Ready for your first Brazilian Jiu Jitsu class?
Now that you know some of the basics Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, perhaps you can understand why hundreds of thousands of men, women, retirees and kids participate regularly.
It really is something different in the world of martial arts. It’s fitness, it’s self defence and it’s a non-aggressive workout for mind and body. Come to an introductory class at United Martial Arts. Experience it for yourself.