The Origins of Jiu-Jitsu and How It Compares to BJJ

Jiu-Jitsu is a martial art that originated in Japan and has a long and rich history. The word “Jiu-Jitsu” means “gentle art” or “art of flexibility” and refers to the principle of using leverage, technique and skill to overcome a stronger opponent. Jiu-Jitsu can be traced back to the samurai warriors who used it as a form of self-defense when they lost their weapons on the battlefield.

Jiu-Jitsu was introduced to Brazil in the early 20th century by Mitsuyo Maeda, a Japanese judoka who traveled around the world teaching and demonstrating his skills. Maeda taught Jiu-Jitsu to Carlos Gracie, who then passed it on to his brothers and sons. The Gracie family adapted and refined Jiu-Jitsu to suit their needs and created their own style, which became known as Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ).

BJJ is a modern evolution of Jiu-Jitsu that focuses on ground fighting and submission grappling. BJJ practitioners use takedowns, sweeps, locks, chokes and other techniques to control and subdue their opponents. BJJ is also known for its sportive aspect, as it has become one of the most popular and widely practiced martial arts in the world. BJJ competitions are held at various levels, from local tournaments to international championships.

While Jiu-Jitsu and BJJ share some common elements, they also have some significant differences. Jiu-Jitsu is more traditional and formal, while BJJ is more dynamic and experimental. Jiu-Jitsu has a broader range of techniques, including strikes, weapons and multiple opponents, while BJJ focuses mainly on grappling with one opponent. Jiu-Jitsu emphasizes self-defense and survival, while BJJ emphasizes sport and competition.

Both Jiu-Jitsu and BJJ are effective and valuable martial arts that can benefit anyone who practices them. They teach discipline, respect, confidence, fitness and mental toughness. They also foster a sense of community and camaraderie among their practitioners. Whether you prefer the original art or its modern adaptation, Jiu-Jitsu and BJJ can enrich your life in many ways.

If you would like to experience BJJ classes for yourself, please request an invitation to try a class at Ascension Martial Arts Oak Creek.

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