Tauranga Brazilian Jiu Jitsu

What is Brazilian Jiu Jitsu?

What is BJJ?

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is one of the fastest growing martial arts in the world. With its reputation as one of the most effective martial arts for self defence, stemming from the success of BJJ in the sport of MMA.

BJJ is a grappling based martial art with its roots in Judo. With the main difference being, Judo emphasises throws whilst BJJ focuses on “ground fighting” or grappling.

BJJ teaches you how to use techniques and skills to overcome a stronger opponent. The philosophy of BJJ is that with the correct use of leverage and body positioning, a smaller, weaker person is able to subdue and submit a larger stronger person.

Unlike other martial arts, there is no striking (punching/kicking/hitting) in BJJ. Instead of strikes, BJJ uses submissions (joint locks and chokes) and holds to subdue an opponent.

BJJ is a challenging and humbling sport but is also one of the most rewarding. The benefits of training BJJ extend far beyond the ability to defend yourself and include:

  • Building confidence
  • Community and friendship
  • Fitness / weight loss
  • Perseverance
  • Mental toughness


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Origin of BJJ ​

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu was mainly developed around 1920 by Brazilian brothers Carlos, Oswaldo, Gastão Jr., George and Hélio Gracie, after Carlos Gracie was taught traditional Kodokan Judo by a travelling Japanese judoka, Mitsuyo Maeda, in 1917. 

BJJ Grading System​

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu has 5 main belts for adults. In order they are: white, blue, purple, brown then black. It takes on average around two years at each belt level with the exception of white belt. Depending on your previous experience or natural ability, a Blue belt can be achieved in around 12 months. The IBJJF have set a minimum time a person must hold each belt before being eligible for their next belt. 2 years at blue belt, 1.5 years at purple and 1 year at brown belt. See the poster below by the IBJJF for further details.