Jiu-jitsu is a traditional form for martial arts that has gained popularity in the world of mixed martial arts (MMA). It is a combat art that focuses on chokes, joint locks, and controlling the body of an attacker. There are gi and no-gi forms of jiu-jitsu. Gi based jiu-jitsu uses a karate style uniform, while no-gi is sans uniform. Jiu-jitsu has been around for many years, but gained widespread recognition in the 90’s. The martial art gained mainstream popularity through the Ultimate Fighting Championship, which was introduced in 1993.
This competition featured fighters from various disciplines who were brought together to prove which combat style was superior. The jiu-jitsu practioners and teachers, the Gracie family, originally organized this event. One the family’s stars dominated the early events, Royce Gracie, who won all of his fights during the first few tournaments simply by using jiu-jitsu. Even against larger and stronger opponents, the power of jiu-jitsu prevailed. Today, almost any fighter who steps in the UFC Octagon has some knowledge of jiu-jitsu, whether it is how to defend against it, how to attack with it, or how to do both.
The roots of jiu-jitsu, or grappling, are not entirely clear. The martial art is rumored to have origins in India with Buddhist monks. Jiu-jitsu became popular in Asia and does show some roots in Japan. From Japan, it spread to other parts of the world. Japanese jiu-jitsu found its way to Brazil, in the where it was introduced to the Gracies. The Gracies took this art and expanded upon it, creating what is known today as Brazilian Jiu-jitsu. This is the form of jiu-jitsu known by most people and is the form that was introduced at the UFC.
While similar to other forms of jiu-jitsu, and similar marital such as Judo, Brazilian jiu-jitsu has its differences as well. Other forms of submission-based martial arts put a great emphasis on strength and power. For example, judo has a heavy focus on throws and wrestling focuses heavily on takedowns. These types of moves are strength based and generally require a great deal of physical power, especially when employed on a larger opponent. A smaller person may have trouble employing techniques in this manner. Taking this into consideration Brazilian jiu-jitsu focuses heavily on defense and the ground fighting aspect of grappling.
Every form of jiu-jitsu, and indeed every grappling art, has merit. The best grapplers in the world have practiced multiple forms of grappling or submission based combat. In jiu-jitsu schools around the world, a person will see influences from other grappling arts. Brazilian jiu-jitsu has a base in Japanese jiu-jitsu yet has borrowed aspects from wrestling, such as the double leg takedown. High school wrestler turned jiu-jitsu practitioner Eddie Bravo learned traditional jiu-jitsu from Jean-Jacques Macahado (a Gracie student) that he then evolved. Bravo’s skills are strictly based in no-gi grappling with his spin the rubber guard and its extensions. Famed Japanese grappler Shinya Aoki has learned rubber guard techniques from Eddie Bravo. Aoki has passed his skills on to others. The jiu-jitsu game is a live organism that is ever evolving. The traditional art continues to move forward but new additions spring forth as practitioners critically analyze jiu-jitsu and create something bigger. As the years move on, jiu-jitsu will continue to evolve and affect other forms martial arts and MMA.
If you want to learn more about this topic, then visit www.howexpert.com/jitsu.
HowExpert publishes quick ‘how to' guides on unique topics by everyday experts. Visit HowExpert.com to learn more.