Below are some frequently asked questions about Brazilian Jiu-Jjitsu. If your question isn’t answered, or you have a suggestion, please email us at or call us at 678-438-0739.
Frequently asked questions
What is Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ)?
Brazilian jiu jitsu is a sport, self-defense system, and a fitness program. It has proven to be the most practical and effective self-defense system in the world. It relies on leverage and technique, rather than strength and size. This allows you to defend yourself against much bigger, stronger attackers. As a result, BJJ is a great sport for everyone – including women and kids.
Do I need to be strong, flexible, and in good shape?
No. You do not need to be strong, flexible, or in particularly good shape to start jiu jitsu. By practicing jiu jitsu, you will most certainly improve your strength, flexibility, and conditioning (plus balance, coordination, and more), but you do not need to have those traits to begin with. Disclaimer: Doctors’ recommend anyone who starts any strenuous activity, including Brazilian jiu jitsu, receive a physical examination to ensure they can safely participate in the program’s activities.
Who can / should do BJJ?
BJJ is for everyone – regardless of sex or age. Brazilian jiu jitsu was originally formulated for use by smaller, weaker people to allow them to defend themselves against larger, stronger attackers. In that way, jiu jitsu is perfectly suited for women, kids, young and old. Anyone and everyone can participate!
What do I wear for practice or to train?
You generally wear either a gi (sometimes called a kimono) or nogi attire to practice/train. If you are in your trial classes, you can wear any comfortable clothing and we will loan you the appropriate attire. When you sign up, you will receive a gi as part of registration.
How should I prepare for my first class?
No preparation is required. Just bring your attire (gi or nogi), flip flops, and come ready to learn and have fun! If you don’t have a gi, you can borrow one of ours for your introductory class. Once you sign up, you will get a gi. If you already have a gi, ensure is without any other academy patch.
Do I have to compete?
No. The majority of people who learn and train jiu jitsu do not compete. Of course, competition can be a reason to set goals and a great way to challenge and test yourself. We encourage anyone who wants to compete to do so, but there is no expectation or requirement to do it. Come learn, get in shape, and enjoy the sport. You can decide later if you’d like to compete.
What are the belt rankings in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu?
The belt order for adults is: White, Blue, Purple, Brown, Black, Red/Black, Red/White, & Red. Some schools award “stripes” for white, blue, purple, and brown belt, based (typically) on time/ practice frequency. At Smith Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, we award stripes as follows:
How long does it take to get your black belt?
The journey in jiu jitsu is much more rigorous that most other martial arts but when you see a black belt, you know it was earned. Although each person is unique, it generally takes between 8-15 years to reach black belt in Brazilian jiu jitsu. It takes 9 months – 18 months to go from white to blue belt and then 2-5 years each for the subsequent belt, up to black.
Is BJJ safe?
Jiu-Jitsu is a very safe sport, and safety is a core principle at Smith Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Our mat etiquette, curriculum design, practice process, and instruction methods all ensure safety first.
Is BJJ good exercise?
Brazilian Jiu-jitsu is one of the best workouts you can get, and it provides far better results than a typical aerobic workout. It is also much more fun and interactive than most exercise programs, so you end up working out more and harder. Many people practice it primarily for the health / exercise benefits, which increase muscle tone and reduce body fat while improving your balance, coordination, cardio vascular capacity, and muscular endurance.
How do I get started?
Today is the day you can begin your journey that will definitely change your life. Click the Free Trial Link and Sign Up for a FREE Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Class.
Why is BJJ is more effective than other martial arts?
Jiu jitsu has proven itself in actual 1-on-1 combat situations:
I'm not sure if BJJ will be right for me. Can I try a class before signing up?
YES! You can try out any of our Fundamentals classes for FREE.
I dont have a gi. Do I need to buy one to try out the class?
No. We will provide you with a practice Gi when you arrive for your FREE trial class.
I am over 40 years old. Am I too old to attend BJJ classes?
No, many of my top students are over 40! As long as you make sure to work within your own abilities and give yourself time to recover you will do great! Remember, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is based on technique and leverage, not athleticism or youth. Train smarter, not harder!
What is the basic etiquette while in class?
Keep your uniform clean
What is the difference between gi and no-gi?
Gi training involves wearing a cotton jacket and pants, while nogi (also written as no-gi and no gi) is normally done in a combination of a rash guard or t-shirt with shorts. The main difference between rolling with a gi and without is that the gi allows a person to slow things down and use position and technique rather than strength or speed. Physical attributes come into it a lot more with no-gi: though they’re certainly not absent in the gi, they can at least be negated to a certain extent by all the handles a gi provides. No gi is normally also, therefore, faster paced than gi.
What is a Gi?
A Gi (sometimes referred to as Kimono) is the uniform that is typically worn when training Jiu-Jitsu. It consists of 3 pieces: a jacket (or top), pants, and a belt. The material in which the three pieces are made is specially reinforced to withstand the rigors of daily practice. Most practitioners of Jiu-Jitsu who advocate the usage of the Gi cite the more technical aspect of grappling with a Gi.
What is the youngest age you teach?
We recommend age 6 and over but really it all depends on the child. We want to make sure that this is a positive and fun experience for each child and therefore we would like them to be able to follow direction, focus and feel confident enough to get on the mat.
How mych does a membership cost?
The cost you pay per month depends on the type of membership you choose. Just a few bucks a day can get you enrolled in our award winning program(s).
I'm a woman. Is BJJ right for me?
BJJ is an excellent choice for women. In terms of self-defense, BJJ is perfect from a female perspective, as it deals with the unfortunately common self-defense situations: BJJ features a lot of attacks and defenses when you are on the ground. It is also a martial art which was designed for a smaller person to overcome a larger one, which again has clear applications for women's self-defense.
Would BJJ benefit my child?
Absolutely! Jiu-Jitsu, which means “gentle art”, emphasizes the use of technique and leverage. So your child won’t have to rely on size, strength, or speed, while also learning to defend themselves and subdue their opponent in a safe way without having to rely on kicks and punches. Your child will develop physical awareness of balance, reflexes, flexibility and coordination, as well as build on the mental aspects of their personality such as self-esteem, discipline, confidence, compassion, and good work ethic. The classes are taught in a positive, fun, and friendly manner, so your child will enjoy learning the art of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.
What's a typical class like?
We begin class with some light calisthenics and stretching. Following our warm-up we then begin drilling technique. These drills when done over and over help form muscle memory and help our students retain technique. After our drilling is completed then we begin to spar (or roll). Rolling is when students are able to put their techniques to the test with training partners who can resist and counter just as they would in an actual fight, providing valuable real-world experience should the techniques ever need to be applied in an actual fight.