Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) is a martial art and combat sport which in its most basic form centres around the concept of taking an aggressor from standing to the ground without sustaining any serious damage and by using a combination of Self Defense, Judo, Wrestling, and Jiu Jitsu techniques. Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is also known as the gentle art which promotes a further concept that a smaller, weaker person can overcome and defend one’s self using superior leverage, technique (choke holds and joint locks) and positional control (Grappling, Judo and Wrestling) to render an aggressor harmless. Its origins come from the ancient battle fields of the Japanese Samurai, which then evolved in the mid 1800’s to the martial art as we know it today Judo. Judo then became the most widely practised sport in the world.
In 1914 a Japanese Judoka (Judo expert) by the name of Mitsuyo Maeda, and also known as Conde Koma, emigrated to Brazil where it is said that he taught Carlos Gracie the art of Jiu Jitsu. Carlos and his brother Helio would then go on to develop what we know it as today, Gracie Jiu Jitsu, before opening Brazil’s first Jiu Jitsu school in 1925.
Today Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is practised as a global martial art, competitive sport and is widely used in combat, namely Mixed Martial Arts. The largest MMA organisation (UFC) experienced the effectiveness of Jiu Jitsu when an un-known Brazilian fighter by the name of Royce Gracie entered the Octagon in the early 1990’s, completely dominating the competition. This put Brazilian Jiu Jitsu on the map and cemented the sports status as a truly global martial art.