BJJ Give it a Go - Wednesday 2nd and 9th of October @Old Gym, 6-8pm. 


1. What is BJJ?

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) is a martial art, combat sport, and a self defence system that focuses on grappling and especially ground fighting.


2. Why BJJ over other martial arts?

BJJ promotes the concept that a smaller, weaker person can successfully defend against a bigger, stronger assailant by using leverage and proper technique, taking the fight to the ground – most notably by applying joint-locks and chokeholds to defeat the other person. It is the preferred choice of ground martial art used by most professional fighters today. Moreover, many law enforcement and national security bodies, notably the US Army, have chosen to train their personnel in BJJ for close-combat encounters due to its effectiveness.


 3. Do I have to have prior experience?

The basic answer is that you need no prior experience to start and you do not need to have to be at a certain fitness level either. It is important to know yourself and only do what you are capable of. Initially it may be that your fitness level means you will not be able to complete all the exercises or do all the sparring. Over time and through regular attendance you will get naturally fitter, stronger and faster. Remember even the most experience people in the gym started from nothing and everyone is a beginner at some point!

It is also common to feel muscle soreness, aching and bruising after training. All these things are common. BJJ is a physical contact sport. These things might well be worse depending on the level of fitness you have prior to starting training but it will get less the more you train and as your body adapts!


 4. Is there a grading system?

All beginners start from white belt. Following that it goes: Blue, Purple, Brown and finally black.


5. What is the class format like?

30-45 minutes – warm up, conditioning

45-60 minutes – techniques and drills

30-45 minutes – live sparring


6. Do I have to spar?

The choice is up to you and it is perfectly fine for you to sit out of the sparring sessions just to observe your first few times. However, sparring is the best opportunity to test out your newly learnt techniques and develop your own unique style. Sparring usually lasts no more than 5 minutes per round.

Within each round, partners restart after one or the other gets submitted, signaled by a tap by the party getting submitted.


7. What do I need to bring/wear to a class?

Members have a choice of training with or without a gi. If you decide not to train with a gi, just wear something comfortable, eg. Shorts & t-shirt.


8. Does BJJ have any benefits other than getting you fit and giving you the confidence to defend yourself when the situation calls for it?

Yes. For sure. Many practitioners find that BJJ helps to keep them grounded; their ego in check. When it comes to submissions, be it a joint-lock or choke, you either tap and train another day, or risk getting injured. It is a constant reminder that there will always be someone better than you and that learning is a life-long journey.

Also, BJJ really trains you to remain calm under pressure and to think flexibly. When someone is close to getting a submission on, struggling frantically will only expose yourself and tire you out, leading to a simpler submission for your opponent.

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