Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) is a martial art that brings together grappling and elements of judo to adaptively allow a smaller, weaker person to defend themselves against someone who is larger and stronger. The origins of BJJ are in Judo and Japanese Jujutsu, but it is called Brazilian because it was in Brazil, with Carlos Gracie and his family, that it grew into the global martial arts phenomenon that it is today. As the audience for MMA has grown over the years, so too has the popularity of BJJ — as champions in MMA often have a background in BJJ.
If you’re thinking about starting to learn BJJ in Mobile, then consider visiting Port City Kickboxing. We offer your first session free. Come on by and find out for yourself if studying BJJ at our academy is right for you!
Why Study Brazilian Jiu-Jisu
Studying Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu has some noteworthy benefits. If you are on the fence about learning this style of self defense, consider the following:
#1: It Is a Very Practical Form of Self Defense
BJJ is a pre-eminently practical form of self defense. One of the reasons for its meteoric rise in popularity over the last century is that it trains practitioners to defend themselves in less-than-ideal situations. Unlike traditional martial arts, which require great speed and coordination to execute successfully, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu relies on techniques that are just as viable outside the martial arts studio as they are inside it.
Did you know that more than 95% of street fights end up on the ground? Of the martial arts we teach at Port City Kickboxing Academy, BJJ is going to be one of the most valuable when it comes to successfully handling a street fight. Learning BJJ will give you an upper hand in real-world self defense situations, even when the other party is bigger or stronger than you. For cases in which your first line of defense (such as kickboxing) is overcome, BJJ will be your second line of defense.
#2: It’s A Superb Workout
Not only will it help you learn useful new skills and self-defense tactics, but BJJ also is a fantastic workout and a great way to get in shape. Warmups, which often include jogging and calisthenics, will get you moving and quickly breaking a sweat. From there, you’ll pick up the pace with drills, followed by working with a training partner. By the end of a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu training session, you may have burned between 400 and 1,000 calories. The compound movements of BJJ will challenge you physically and help tone and strengthen your whole body.
#3: Anyone Can Practice It
As Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is designed to help smaller, weaker practitioners subdue larger, more powerful opponents, it’s a good option for everyone. Regardless of your gender or age, learning this martial art will help you gain the upper hand in many different scenarios. It’s even good for kids! Click here to learn more about our kids Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu classes.
#4: It Helps Relieve Stress
Between dealing with work, school, family, and traffic, life can be pretty stressful!The negative physical and mental challenges that are caused by stress are well-known: higher blood pressure, heart problems, depression, and anxiety — just to name a few. One way to help relieve stress is to channel that energy into exercise and grappling through Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. People who practice BJJ have an easier time letting go of their problems in life and feel more positive and satisfied.
#5: It Teaches You (Or Your Kids) to Be Humble
Self-absorption and never leaving one’s comfort-zone can easily breed a sense of entitlement and self-importance. The struggle to grow and improve oneself, along with the guidance and patience of a quality BJJ instructor, will help you or your kids learn a bit of humility. One of the most valuable things that BJJ teaches is strength of character and stability. Through humility, one learns to be more empathetic, trusting, and emotionally stable. To succeed in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu takes focus and determination. However, what is more, it requires the ability to accept failure, learn from it, and move on. These are all valuable skills both inside and outside the martial arts studio.
#6: BJJ Trains You to Be Self-Improvement Oriented
Regardless of your skill level, there is so much room to grow in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. At no point will you ever feel like you have truly mastered the martial art. There are always new techniques to discover and new mindset changes to be made. Working on yourself regularly for months, years, and even decades, is part of what makes BJJ so powerful. It’s not something you can casually pick up and perfect in just a handful of sessions. The road of self-improvement goes ever on. If you’re looking for a way to hack your mind to make yourself a self-improvement machine, practicing BJJ will train you to get comfortable with being uncomfortable and leaning into the unfamiliar and challenging. If you don’t challenge yourself, you’re not going to continue growing. For those of us who thrive on self-improvement and want to continue growing and becoming better persons, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu can be a powerful instrument for self-transformation.
The Secret Power of BJJ
We’ve talked a bit about why Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is so beneficial to practice, but what is it all about? Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu was started in the early 20th century by Geo Omori, a Japanese-born Brazilian martial artist who passed his knowledge on to Carlos Gracie. Gracie was one of the primary developers of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, and the Gracie family is recognized today as one of the main lineages of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu over the last 100 years. Of course, the transmission of a martial art over time is only superficially knowable — how does one trace the origins of a strike, or a single grappling technique? Yes, we can see distinct places, people, and events where certain ideas were brought together, but no one truly owns the heritage of something like Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Ultimately, it is a way of mastering one’s own body and preparing it for grappling — something that far predates recorded history. The secret power of BJJ is that it brings together a wide array of knowledge and techniques and, because it is a martial art that is open to growth and self-transformation, it remains one of the most practical and powerful self-defense practices around.
If you are interested in learning Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, visit Port City Kickboxing Academy in Mobile, or give us a call. We also offer your introductory lesson for free, so reach out to us today to get started! We look forward to meeting you and working with you towards mutual self-improvement!