Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Beginners Guide


You may have heard about the incredible martial art of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, and you’re beginning to think it’s something you want to try. Trust us, you won’t regret it! As a beginning student of BJJ, you are probably feeling overwhelmed by the sheer number of techniques and terminology. Don’t worry! This Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu beginners guide will provide a comprehensive overview of the art, so you can confidently start your journey.

History of BJJ

The beginning of Brazilian jiu-jitsu (BJJ) took place in Brazil during the beginning of the 20th century. Jigoro Kano, a Japanese martial artist and founder of judo, taught Carlos Gracie the art of Kodokan Judo. After being taught by Kano, Gracie opened the first jiu-jitsu academy in Brazil and began teaching his family the art. From there, Brazilian jiu-jitsu was born and has since become one of the most popular martial arts in the world.

Watch James’ 3 Year Jiu-Jitsu Experience Interview

This interview is hosted by Brian Doran, our founder of Fitnmeet with James and moderated by Trent Jessee. We discuss James’ story in 3 major areas:

First, how James has used brazilian jiu-jitsu to improve his mind-set and the type of success mind-set needed to practice and compete.

Second, tips from James’ life about diet and how you might consider exploring some eating habits that can help you.

Third, insights into exercises that boost jiu-jitsu performance.

Benefits of BJJ

Benefits of BJJ

Learning Brazilian jiu-jitsu has countless benefits and is not just restricted to physical conditioning. Here are a few reasons why beginning jiu-jitsu can be beneficial for you:

  • It is an excellent form of self-defense. The techniques and strategies taught in BJJ can help you protect yourself in dangerous situations.
  • It builds strength, flexibility, and endurance. Regular training will improve your overall physical health, as well as your mental fortitude.
  • It helps to build confidence and discipline. Learning jiu-jitsu can help you stay focused and disciplined in other areas, such as work and school.
  • It is a great way to make friends. Training Brazilian jiu-jitsu is a great way to meet new people and make friends with like-minded martial arts enthusiasts.

These are just some small benefits jiu-jitsu can have on you! Now let’s move on to the next step in this Brazilian jiu-jitsu beginners guide.

Training Tips

When beginning jiu-jitsu, here are a few essential tips to keep in mind as you progress through your training:

  • Be patient. Learning new techniques and strategies will take time, so don’t get frustrated.
  • Be consistent. Establishing a regular training schedule is essential for ensuring your progress and keeping you motivated.
  • Ask questions. Be bold and ask questions or seek feedback from your instructors and fellow students.
  • Focus on the basics. As a beginning student, it is crucial to focus on learning and perfecting the fundamental techniques of jiu-jitsu before moving on to more advanced moves.

Starting BJJ can be intimidating, but don’t worry! The most important thing to remember is that everyone learns at their own pace. Most BJJ academies have a grading system in which you will receive belts based on your progression. This is great motivation to keep pushing forward and continue improving your skills.

Basic Rules

The rules of Brazilian jiu-jitsu are simple: ground fighting and submission. BJJ focuses on controlling your opponent, then using various techniques to submit them. There are two main types of submissions: joint locks and chokes. Joint locks involve manipulating an opponent’s joints to force them to tap out, while chokes involve cutting off the airflow of an opponent to make them submit.

It is important to remember that you should always practice jiu-jitsu in a safe, controlled environment. There is no place for aggression or recklessness on the mats. Treat your training partners with respect to ensure that everyone can train safely.

Common Moves and Techniques

Once you understand the rules and principles of beginning jiu-jitsu, learning some typical moves and techniques is important. The following are just a few of the methods you will learn in beginning jiu-jitsu:

  • Guard Passing: This technique involves controlling an opponent from the guard position and passing to side control. The way you do a guard pass will depend on the position of your opponent, but a common way is to place your leg over the opponent’s hip and using your arms to push their legs away.
  • Armbar: This submission involves trapping an opponent’s arm between your thighs and applying pressure until they tap out. It can be used from a variety of positions, but the most common is from side control or mount. The way you perform an armbar will depend on the position of your opponent, but the basic idea is to trap their arm in place and apply pressure until they submit.
  • Omoplata: This technique is a shoulder lock that involves trapping an opponent’s arm between your legs and applying pressure to the shoulder joint. It can be used from both guard and side control positions, and requires the use of leverage to put pressure on the shoulder joint. This is one of the most effective submissions in jiu-jitsu, and is a great way to submit an opponent without using too much strength.
  • Choke: This submission involves cutting off an opponent’s air or blood supply with your arms or legs until they tap out. It can be done from a variety of positions, but is most common from side control or mount. Key points to remember are to not use too much force and maintain the correct grip.

These are just a few of the techniques that you will learn as a beginner in jiu-jitsu. As you progress, you will learn many more techniques and strategies that will help make you a better fighter. BJJ is a mostly reactive martial art, so learning to anticipate and react to your opponent’s moves is essential. You will want to practice different ways to control and submit your opponent, so you can notice areas of weakness in your opponent’s game or strength.

Developing Good Form

You don’t need to be incredibly strong or fit to practice Brazilian jiu-jitsu – the most important thing is to develop good technique. Focus on perfecting the basic techniques before worrying about strength and power. The more you practice, the better your technique and the stronger you will be.

Developing good techniques involves drilling moves repeatedly until they become second nature. It is also essential to constantly review and refine your strategy by focusing on the details and making corrections as you go. As you become more experienced, your techniques will become more efficient and effective.

Practicing Mindfulness

One of the essential aspects of beginning jiu-jitsu is to practice mindfulness and stay present in class. Being mindful means being aware of your physical and mental state and being in tune with your body and emotions. It also means being aware of the present moment, living in the moment, and not getting distracted by thoughts of the past or future.

Staying present in class means focusing on your technique, partner, and instructors. Be aware of what is happening right now, and try to stay in the moment. Practicing mindfulness and staying present will improve your jiu-jitsu and overall mental and physical health.

Here’s a mindfulness exercise to try:

  • Count your breaths – focus on your breathing and count each breath up to 10.
  • Focus on feelings in the body – identify different feelings in your body and observe them without judgement.
  • Ground yourself by focusing on five elements: touch, sound, smell, sight and taste – spend a few moments taking in these five elements around you.

By trying this mindfulness technique, you will be able to stay focused and present during tournaments, training sessions, and everyday life.

Bottom Line

Beginning jiu-jitsu can be daunting initially, but with the right attitude and perseverance, you will soon become proficient in this art. Remember to practice mindfulness and stay present in class, and focus on perfecting your technique. With dedication and hard work, you can become a successful jiu-jitsu practitioner!

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