BJJ (Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu)
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, or BJJ as it’s commonly known, is a ground fighting discipline that is thought to be one of the most difficult martial arts to master.
The concept behind BJJ is that a smaller and weaker fighter can defend and win against a larger opponent. Using ground techniques, leverage, joint locks and chokeholds, the smaller fighter can force their opponent into submission.
This technique of fighting from the ground, and especially from your back is what makes it unique and very popular amongst MMA fighters. Today most MMA fighters will learn BJJ because of it’s proven effectiveness in the octagon.
The History of BJJ
Originating in Japan in the late 19th Century, the style of fighting was originally called Jujutsu which later became Judo and eventually Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ).
It was the early 20th century when Kudokan Judo master Mitsuyo Maeda traveled the world demonstrating his art of “jiu-do” and challenging fighters from different disciplines such as boxing, wrestling and various other martial arts and eventually landing in Brazil in 1914.
Maeda stayed with Gastao Gracie, who was helping him get established in Brazil, and in return he taught Carlos, Gracie’s eldest son, Judo. Carlos then taught his younger siblings including the youngest, Helio Gracie.
Due to his smaller size, Helio had to adapt and thus created an offshoot of Maeda’s style to favour leverage over strength and size. And the modern style of Brazilian Jiu-jitsu where fighting on your back gives you an advantage was born.
Today BJJ is more than just a sport, it is practiced across the world as a martial art, a way to promote fitness and build character, and also a way of life to many.
Benefits of BJJ
Apart from the obvious reasons why BJJ is a good sport to learn, like self-defense, or taking it on as a sport, there are plenty of physical and mental benefits. So, if you’re still wondering whether to take the leap or not, here’s some pros.
- Cardio. Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu utilises every muscle in your body. Once you start training, you’ll notice how fast you can get in shape, maybe lose some weight, and stay that way. The best part is you’ll be focussing on your technique so much, you probably won’t even notice the hard workout your having.
- Confidence. It has been proven that not only do you get stronger, but your self-esteem is positively affected. Knowing you can defend yourself in a difficult situation will give you some peace-of-mind.
- Stress. Apart from the physical benefits of BJJ, there is a lot of psychological ones. A good “roll” will give your body and mind a workout which in turn relieves a lot of stress.
- Discipline. As with many martial arts, you’ll learn discipline. Whether it’s from sticking to your routine or achieving your goals within your training, discipline plays a major role in BJJ.
- Fun. Not only will you get to have fun learning different martial arts, but you’ll meet other like-minded students at Monarchy MMA classes, and even though it might feel like punishment at time, you’ll still have a good laugh.