So you’re ready to improve your life with Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu?
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is a great way to get fit, have fun, and be part of a global community of amazing people. All while learning to defend yourself with the best martial art in the world. BJJ offers a whole new way of developing physical, emotional, and mental toughness that translates very well into other areas of your life.
I’ll admit I’m a little biased, I’ve been training BJJ since 2019.
I’ve tried Karate, Boxing, and Muay Thai in the past.
Each of these martial arts taught me important lessons, but none as much as Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.
Neither was I able to develop friendships like with Jiu-Jitsu.
It’s an incredible community of people who literally trust each other with their lives.
BJJ - The Gentle Art
BJJ - The Gentle Art
#1 Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Teaches Patience
Growing up, I’ve never really been a patient person.
I’ve always been used to instant gratification, being rewarded now for something I’ve done.
I suppose most people struggle with this at some point in their lives.
From relationships to business, I never understood how much impatience was actually negatively influencing the most important decisions I was making.
BJJ changed all of this for me.
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu teaches you that progress is not made in leaps and bounds. But rather in small incremental improvements that accumulate over time. Improving incrementally has a compounding effect, very often the results over time will far outweigh the effort it takes to achieve them.
BJJ has the most complex curriculum of all martial arts, it takes on average 8-10 years to reach the level of black belt.
Even then, practitioners continue learning new things.
ALSO READ: Ultimate Jiu-Jitsu Gi Buyers Guide
#2 BJJ Has The Best Community
A large reason for taking up a hobby like BJJ is the social element.
Just like other sports, a close connection forms between training partners in a gym.
In Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu the bond between training partners is often far deeper than you’d find in other sports. Since you’re literally training to maim or kill each other, a level of trust forms that’s difficult to replicate outside the gym. This passionate and close-knit community is rapidly growing each year.
Since its debut to the world in 1993 at UFC 1 when Royce Gracie submitted Gerard Gordeau, BJJ has grown to a global community of over 3 million practitioners.
The community has exploded by almost 400% since 2004.
You’re guaranteed to find a Jiu-Jitsu gym in almost any major city in the world or an MMA gym that would host BJJ classes.
You don’t even need to speak the same language, just bump fists and get training.
#3 Jiu-Jitsu Gives You Self-Confidence
One of the main reasons parents sign their kids up to any martial art is to build self-confidence.
Being confronted with dangerous dilemmas on a regular basis and figuring out how to deal with them is extremely important.
You don’t have to be a kid to start building on your self-confidence. Many people who’ve started BJJ well into their adulthood have claimed that training the art has completely changed their confidence levels. The self-confidence developed on the mats is automatically carried over into other areas of your life.
There is a hidden strength in knowing how well you’re able to deal with difficult situations.
The peace of mind that comes with knowing that there are very few people who would be able to physically intimidate you is priceless.
Allowing you the freedom to make decisions that are good for you.
#4 BJJ Forms Mental Toughness
There is no hiding on the mats.
You will be forced to develop not only as a martial artist but more importantly as a human being.
When you’re stuck under a heavy 200 lb, barely able to catch your breath, and considering giving up.
This is where BJJ teaches you that persistence with purpose will always pay off.
As long as you’re willing to stick with something longer than your opponent is, you’re more often than not going to win.
Very often in Jiu-Jitsu, a submission will present itself directly after you’ve successfully defended a submission attempt. This is because the attacker would’ve spent more energy attacking you than you did persistently defending. The energy you saved will help you reverse the position and gain control.
These small lessons of persistence are carried over into your life outside the gym as well.
When you realize that not many things in life are more stressful than defending a choke attempt or an armbar, life gets much easier.
#5 Learn How To Think Strategically With BJJ
Something you don’t see during a fight is the mental game that’s going on in the mind of the fighters.
BJJ is commonly described as chess for your body.
You are constantly anticipating submissions based on positional advantage, defending against submissions, anticipating counters to defenses and submissions, looking for submissions of your own, and the list goes on.
High-level grapplers can anticipate a submission opportunity 3, 4, or even 5 moves ahead. Quickly understanding a problem or dilemma, considering the possible solutions, and executing the most likely to be successful. This is a skill that you can develop with BJJ and will translate well into other areas of your life.
If you’re looking to improve any aspect of your life, it all starts with the right mindset.
If you understand exactly what you’re trying to achieve and how to get there, you’re able to significantly increase your chances of success.
#6 BJJ Teaches You To Keep Calm Under Pressure
A very large motivator for people starting a martial art is to develop the ability to remain calm under pressure.
We do this by immersing ourselves in stressful situations every time we train Jiu-Jitsu.
Many situations in BJJ could be considered stressful. This is because there are only 2 main modes of fighting, either defensive or offensive. On average you would be spending 50% of your time defending from attacks. Learning to keep your mind calm and clear in these situations is the key to surviving.
By developing this mental ability to remain calm under pressure when grappling, we automatically carry it over into other stressful areas of our lives.
Whether it be finances, relationships, or business – Learning to remain calm under pressure is always a good thing.
Developing as a Jiu-Jitsu Practitioner will require you to reach down inside yourself to find your calm place, otherwise, you’ll struggle to enjoy being in difficult situations.
#7 Jiu-Jitsu Promotes A Healthy Lifestyle
Jiu-Jitsu is no regular hobby.
Speak to anyone who does BJJ and they’ll tell you that it’s completely addictive – In a good way!
The process of getting good at Jiu-Jitsu involves far more than simply showing up to class. It also involves eating right and keeping your body well conditioned so that you can optimize your time training. Overall, BJJ promotes healthy and productive habits through the desire to improve on the mat.
Ensuring that your diet is right, and ensuring that your body is strong and flexible enough to prevent injuries will come naturally.
Especially if you’re looking to improve your grappling game without having to take breaks for injury or illness recovery.
Jiu-Jitsu will consume you. It’s certainly the most fun I’ve had getting fit and healthy, and I’ve had many hobbies over the years.
As the iconic Keanu Reeves, who is currently a Blue Belt (2021) said,
#8 BJJ Promotes Mentorship
Something I’ve believed for a long time is that the world needs more mentorship.
The previous generations teaching and being examples for the youngsters.
The belt system in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu forms a natural hierarchy of legitimate skill and experience.
Belts in Jiu-Jitsu are earned through constant hard work, so the people who progress in the art tend to have a level of wisdom that lower belts aspire to.
People forged by hard training tend to be more sincere and willing to pass on their knowledge and experience. Very often this is in the form of a higher belt taking a lower belt under their wing and teaching them everything they know. Like you’d expect from a mentor.
You will find this at every gym.
The higher belts teaching and mentoring the lower belts, all too keen to pass on their hard-earned knowledge because they want to help their training partners who are willing to put the same effort into training as they are.
#9 BJJ Is Amazing For Fitness
If you think a Crossfit session is tiring, you haven’t tried Jiu-Jitsu.
I’ve done many fitness activities in my life: Running, Cricket, Soccer, Rugby, Squash, Muay Thai, and even Cross-Fit.
Nothing compares to the fitness you develop when training a grappling art, BJJ included.
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is different from other types of physical activities because it involves constantly fighting against the strength and technique of someone else. It is so physically taxing that Practitioners have to monitor and plan their physical exertion, along with managing their breathing to optimize their output.
Jiu-Jitsu builds strength in muscles you didn’t even know existed.
Trust me, you’ll feel it. And there’s nothing more satisfying.
A normal round of BJJ lasts for about 5 minutes, a standard live sparring session during class would normally last for 30 – 45 minutes with 1 minute breaks in-between.
In my opinion, BJJ is the ultimate HIIT exercise.
#10 Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Is The Best Self-Defence
As you’ll see on this blog, we’ll always refer to BJJ as being one of the most important weapons to include in your self-defense arsenal.
If you didn’t know the origin of Jiu-Jitsu, it’s derived from Judo.
An art practiced by the Samurais, specifically to be lethal even if they were on the ground without their weapons.
In this way, Jiu-Jitsu was perfected over centuries of hand-to-hand combat.
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu as an art saw its resurgence in the gyms, streets, and beaches of Brazil. When the Gracie’s would challenge other martial arts to prove the superiority of BJJ. Every technique in Jiu-Jitsu is battle-tested against opponents of all shapes and sizes.
If you’re looking for a martial art worth spending your time and money learning, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is for you.
Not only for giving you the confidence that you’ll be able to defend yourself and your loved ones, should you need to.
But there are so many other aspects of your life that “The Gentle Art” will touch, and you’ll be so grateful that it did.
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