What is the Art, History & Fundamentals of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu & the Training Benefits for Veterans?

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, a martial art is often defined by its ground fighting and grappling techniques. It has gained huge popularity worldwide. Its unique philosophy, emphasis on leverage, and rich history make it not just a sport but a lifestyle for many. For our veterans who may be considering jumping into a martial art, Foxhole Veterans Charity Foundation would like to put the spotlight on Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and see if it is the right art for you.

What is Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Fundamentals?

Unlike many martial arts that focus on striking power, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu emphasizes technique. The art believes in the principle that a smaller, weaker person can defend themselves against a bigger, stronger assailant using leverage and proper techniques. While most martial arts prioritize stand-up fighting, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu’s specialty is ground combat. It teaches students how to defend themselves when taken to the ground, which is where many real-life altercations end up. At its core, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is about controlling your opponent and making them submit using chokes and joint locks. The goal is not to inflict harm but to control and neutralize the threat. Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is a continuously evolving art. As practitioners from diverse martial arts backgrounds engage with it, they bring new techniques and perspectives, making Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu a dynamic and ever-evolving discipline. Many Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu schools practice in a traditional uniform called a “gi”. The gi not only pays homage to the art’s roots but also provides practitioners with tools for grips and techniques.

What is the History of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu? When Did it Become a Sport?

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu’s roots trace back to Judo in Japan. Judo itself evolved from various forms of Japanese Jiu-Jitsu which is different from Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. The story of BJJ in Brazil begins with Mitsuyo Maeda, a Judo expert, who traveled to Brazil in the early 20th century. Maeda settled in Belém and started teaching the Gracie family, among others. The Gracie family played a major role in refining and making the art more popular. They adapted the techniques taught by Maeda to focus even more on ground combat. Carlos Gracie and then his brother, Hélio Gracie, became pioneers of the sport in Brazil. Hélio, being smaller and frailer, adapted the techniques to leverage his physical stature, laying the foundation for what we recognize today as Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. The Gracie family sought to promote Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu by challenging practitioners of other martial arts in no-holds-barred fights. These matches showcased the effectiveness of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, even against larger and stronger opponents. The art gained global recognition when Royce Gracie won the early Ultimate Fighting Championship events in the 1990s. Today, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is practiced worldwide, with countless schools and tournaments. Its techniques are deemed essential for mixed martial arts fighters, and its philosophy has influenced self-defense teachings worldwide.

Training Veterans Out of Victorious Gym in Troy, Michigan

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is more than just a martial art, it’s a testament to the power of human spirit, intelligence, and innovation. Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is an ideal martial art for veterans including those with injuries and disabilities. Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu’s emphasis is on technique and leverage over brute strength and is a refreshing perspective in the martial arts community. For Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu dedicated to our veterans, come and train with us at Foxhole Veterans Charity Foundation today.

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