About Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

What is BJJ?

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) is a martial art that was developed from Kodokan Judo by the Gracie family in the early to mid 20th century in Brazil, with emphasis being placed on taking your opponent down, controlling them on the ground and forcing them to submit through chokes or joint locks.

When training all techniques are applied progressively and in a controlled manner allowing your opponent to submit via tapping out before any damage is done. This allows all techniques to be practiced against fully resisting opponents - so you will develop the skill, reaction time and nuances of how to set up and execute a miriad of techniques. Drilling teaches you how to physically perform a technique. Sparring against a fully resisting opponent teaches you when and how you can execute that technique effectively.

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is practiced both Gi and No-Gi and there are differences in the game as a result. No Gi Jiu-Jitsu is very fast and dynamic, with more emphasis placed on positional dominance and explosive movement due to the lack of grips. Gi Jiu-Jitsu is slower and more technical with a lot of techniques using the Gi itself for attack - it also has an equalising effect where weight and strength differences between sparring partners are less important than in No-Gi where strength and athleticism can be a deciding factor.

Gracie Barra Leeds has a strong competition team and we regularly medal at national competitions. We also have active MMA fighters who have won most of their victories by submission.

Whether you wish to become fitter, learn an effective martial art or become an active competitor, our wealth of experience will help you towards any one of these goals.

F.A.Q's and club rules:

· Visiting Gracie Barra members from other clubs train free for a week. (In fact we are happy to see visitors from any organisation if you are passing through!)
· Full members can use S&C equipment any time gym is open.
· You can attend the advanced BJJ class at any level, but you will not be able to spar in this class until you are a white belt 2 stripe, or until the instructor thinks you are ready.
· Gis must be clean each session.
· Rashguards or a T-shirt must be worn under the Gi.
· If you are new and do not have a gi, you can train in shorts and a t shirt, or make use of a loan gi if one is available. You will be expected to purchase your own gi within the first few of weeks of training.
· You are welcome to train with us even if you split your training with another non-Gracie Barra Jiu Jitsu team, or represent another Jiu-Jitsu team at competition - however you will not be promoted by us and not be able to become a full time member unless you wish to train predominantly with us


· Brazilian Jiu Jitsu has a coloured belt system consisting of White, Blue, Purple, Brown and Black belts.
· The length of time varies between each belt level according to individual ability – it is a personal journey.
· You do not pay for organized assessment “gradings” you will be promoted when your instructor feels you are ready.
· You will only be graded by attending Gi classes.
· Grades from other martial arts do not count, you will start at white belt.
· Grades from other Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu associations will be recognized – It will be pretty obvious to your instructor if the level doesn’t feel right.
· We realise that everybody has a different situation so you are welcome to discuss any of the above points so we can come to an individual arrangement if needed.