FAQ

What is Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ)?

Jiu-Jitsu, which literally means “the gentle art,” is a famous form of self-defense that does not rely on physical strength and power., Using techniques of strikes, holds, locks, chokes, throws, and evasions, it employs mechanics though leverage and knowledge of human anatomy to overcome any attacker with minimal effort and strength. Jiu-Jitsu teaches self-confidence, improves self-esteem, relieves stress, and increases the ability to focus. 

What are the benefits that I may get from Gracie Jiu-Jitsu?

Including the Gracie Jiu-Jitsu to your routine can help you get in shape, gain confidence, and release stress, all while forming a network of like-minded people sure to motivate and inspire you. The Gracie Philadelphia Academy not only excels in this great martial art, but offers a safe, friendly, and family-style atmosphere that many of our students consider their second home.

What makes Gracie Jiu-Jitsu different from other martial arts?

While other martial arts rely heavily on strength and speed, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu relies on superior technique and leverage.

Do I need to be in shape to start?

Any fitness level is welcome to the classes. What sets our classes apart is hard work; therefore, everyone is welcome and we will make our best to accommodate you. As lessons progress so will your fitness and lessons will become easier. Our team will ensure a progressive and gradual plan to help you acclimate to our programs while achieving your fitness goals.

Am I too old to train?

We have students of all ages, each with different goals in mind. Whether you are 7 or 89, our classes and programs are designed to provide results at any age and are enjoyed by both younger and older students.

Why Train with the Gi?

The gi game obviously has a lot more to it. Everything that can be done without the gi can be done with it, making it a more complex game. Additionally, taking away the gi allows physical attributes such as size strength and slipperiness to come to play with greater effect due to the lack of levers and friction. Working with the gi is generally considered more of a ‘thinking man’s’ game. Not that no-gi isn’t, it’s just that the gi removes many physical advantages and adds more techniques. For now, you should view your kimono as a set of training wheels. As you develop a higher level of proficiency, you will learn to perform Jiu-jitsu techniques both with and without a kimono. For now, the kimono will add a level of sophistication to your game that will result in you as a student becoming a more advanced and technical fighter.

Will I be expected to compete?

Competition is encouraged for those who wish to do so but it is NOT a requirement. While there are many positive reasons for competing in tournaments, you will never be forced. However, over the years we have noticed that students who compete make huge improvements in their BJJ.

What is the learning environment like?

In classes we have a positive atmosphere and a level of mutual respect. Classes are fun and friendly but still cultivate a positive learning atmosphere.

Can women do it?

Women are welcome to take part in any of the classes we run.

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.

Whats the deal with Belts and Promotions?

Belts go as follows: White, Blue, Purple, Brown, and Black. One of the main differences between BJJ and other martial arts is that it is hard to get promoted. At a blue belt level, you can almost be considered a lethal force. It will take commitment because we are committed to producing students with real ability. We do have a curriculum we go by to help you and once you exhibit competency in the techniques acquired you may qualify for a promotion.