Brazilian Jiu Jitsu

Just started BJJ, need to know more about its history, belts, techniques? BJJ Honcho has you covered. From YouTube videos, to how to pick a gi. There is a even section for BJJ basic techniques. You will also learn about the Japanese influence on Brazilian Jiu Jitsu   . Let’s roll!

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu History

There is a saying, you don’t know where you’re going unless you know where you’ve been. This holds true to brazilian jiu jitsu history. To fully understand Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ). You must know its roots. See where this awesome martial art we all love grew from.


Brazilian jiu-jitsu can be traced back all the way back to Buddhist monks in India. Then worked its way to Japan through the silk road. In Japan, it was used in its battlefields by the Samurai. In this form, it was simply known as jiu-jitsu. Jiu-Jitsu was used by the samurai as a last-ditch effort. When the samurai was off horseback and weaponless . Jiu-Jitsu is comprised of kicks, punches, throws, sweeps, and ground techniques.


brazilian jiu jitsu history

Jigoro Kano

Moving through the BJJ family tree, we find ourselves in the 1800’s. 1882 to be exact, Kodokan Judo was born and the father was Jigoro Kano. Kodokan Judo is a style of Ryo that is based on ‘randori’. Which is the practice of full power practice against a resisting opponent. This Judo is the base of the Judo that is now practiced around the world.

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu & The Gracie Family

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    Mitsuyo Maeda

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      Carlos and Helio Gracie

As we move through the BJJ family tree we now come upon one of Kano’s students, Mitsuyo Maeda. Maeda emigrated from Japan to Brazil in 1914. He was helped by George Gracie. George’s father too was an immigrant from Scotland and he knew how difficult it can be.To thank George for all the assistance, Maeda thought Judo to George’s son Carlos.Carlos, later on, thought this great martial art to his brothers. One of the notable brothers is Helio. Then opened an academy in 1925. This became the first Brazilian jiu-jitsu academy.
The Gracie’s Carlos and Helio along with their many students, field tested and honed BJJ. They did this with many public open no rules challenges. The Gracie brother main focus was the show how superior ground fighting was. The fights were against fighters of all sizes and skill. The Gracies would beat the opponent relatively unharmed.
As the years roll on by another Gracie, Rolls Gracie started refining BJJ some more. This time adding some techniques found in wrestling was now part of the Brazilian jiu jitsu techniques.

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Meets The World

brazilian jiu jitsu techniques

Royce Gracie

A few years keep rolling by now we are in the early 90’s. A Gracie has now moved to California LA to be exact from Brazil. This Gracie is known as Rorion Gracie. Rorion brings with him something special his families BJJ. In 1993 the first UFC took place, it was based on the mixed martial arts competitions called Vale Tudo that took place in Brazil. After many matches, the winner was announced and it was Rorion’s younger brother Royce Gracie. Even though the other fighters were than him. He was able to defeat them using the Gracies own brazilian jiu jitsu basic techniques. This showed that BJJ was very effective. You can see one of the matches in this brazilian jiu jitsu youtube video from the first UFC.

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Now

More years roll on by and we are now coming upon the modern day Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu has spread around the world thanks to the Gracies proving the effectiveness of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and the popularity of the UFC. Also the growing interest in MMA (Mixed Martial Arts). Now we have many academies that you can find almost anywhere . Some Gracie affiliated some not . From South African academies to Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Japanese academies. Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu found its way back home ever since being exported to Brazil many years ago by Maeda.

Sport Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is know for it’s self defense uses but just like how Judo has it sporting side with involvement in the Olympics. Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu has grown too grown to have it’s sporting side .
This sporting side is governed by the IBJJF(International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Foundation). The governing body of the IBJJF holds yearly sets of competitions throughout many regions then a final competition every year. The IBJJF not only handles the rules for the competitions. The IBJJF also sets the modern day standards for the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu gi. We have all seen a pink gi or even a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles gi. Those are nice for training but when in competition it is a big no no . The IBJJF had very strict gi standards . From the wear and fit to the color go to be worn in competition. The competitors in IBJJF competitions must wear either a white , blue or black gi. Made of cotton or like material . The gi top color must match the gi bottom color .Also the gi must not be too loose . If too loose it is easy to grab, on the other side of things. The gi must not be too tight . If too tight it restricts movement and difficult your opponent to grab giving you an unfair advantage.We all want a fair fight right so these rules must be followed by everyone who competes.
Also the IBJJF sets the belts standards for Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu belts .The belts are how
each Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu player show what rank that they are. Start from white all the way to the top mater’s which are few who are red belt . Check out the IBJJF belt rank chart below .

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IBJJF belt rank chart

Let The Journey Beguine

Thought out this article you can see how Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu has grown from its humble roots to what we have today and it’s still growing . With the addition of new techniques and testing of what works and doesn’t work. It’s show that Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is like a living entity . So we welcome you to BJJ Honcho. Trust in us to be your guide on everything that is Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu related . Time to hit the mats and Roll!