Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is a martial art form that is becoming increasingly popular, particularly in the MMA community. It is predicated on the idea that the majority of fights, be it in the octagon or on the street, end up on the ground.
Unlike other martial arts that focus on various punches or kicks, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is comprised entirely of grappling with the end goal of subduing your opponent without ever having to throw a punch.
To the untrained eye, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu may not look like anything more than two people rolling around on the ground, but it goes so much deeper. Every fight is a chess match in motion with each little movement affording one a certain advantage (or disadvantage). Something as simple as getting a hold on a person’s clothes or getting them to move their weight a certain way can allow a fighter to get the upper hand. In this way, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is just as much about mental strength as physical.
One of the defining characteristics of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is its focus on brains over brawn. Through proper technique, BJJ takes raw strength out of the equation almost entirely and is “very David and Goliath-esque.” This, combined with the popularity of athletes such as Ronda Rousey and Holly Holm has given way to a much more mixed gender presence in the community.
In fact, one of the important elements of practice is challenging yourself against a variety of opponents. After all, if you find yourself in a self-defense situation, it may not always be against someone who is the same size, gender, or skill level as you. Visit Tim Burrill’s Brazilian Jiu Jitsu in Providence, RI and you will witness competitors “rolling” with others almost twice their size and in an entirely different belt rank.
Mix this all together and you get a very practical and inviting form of martial arts. The popularity of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is certainly growing, especially with the growth of MMA and the UFC. If martial arts is something you’re interested in, give BJJ a look at your local dojo.