No Gi and Gi are both 2 forms of Jiu-Jitsu. While some may refer to No-Gi jiu-jitsu as wrestling nevertheless No Gi is still a form of jiu-jitsu. We believe that to become a well-rounded BJJ player you need to train in both. Gi jiu-jitsu is a great way to build a strong base and work on your technical abilities and defense. Whereas No Gi helps you refine your submission and finishing skills.
In No Gi BJJ the pace is faster pace due to the lack of friction from the kimono. Also, due to the lack of added grip from the Gi the submissions are a bit different. No Gi BJJ players prioritize taking the back over gaining the mount position due to limited submission options. While there are fewer submissions in mount No Gi opens up a lot more options for guillotines, darce chokes, and various foot locks.
While in Gi Jiu-Jitsu the sleeves, collar, and pants provide opportunities to gain and control position. Also, the added fabric opens up various submission opportunities as well. As you may have figured Gi Jiu-Jitsu is pretty slowed down. While Gi Jiu-Jitsu rewards those who prioritize technique and tactical thinking. The jacket becomes a weapon in the Gi. The most common jacket grip is the sleeve or the collar. It becomes easy to get arm control, arm drags, armbars and much more. The grips offer additional leverage to control the fight and submit your opponent by using their jacket against them.
When deciding what type of Jiu-Jitsu game you want to purse remember not to limit yourself. There is something to be learned from training in No-Gi Jiu-Jitsu or Gi Jiu-Jitsu. To be a complete BJJ player, you should train in both.
Which do you prefer?
Combat Jiu-Jitsu is submission grappling that allows open-handed strikes to opponents once the action hits the ground. Combat jiu-jitsu is pitched as a league of professional grappling. Combat jiu-jitsu adds an added element of danger to grappling matches thanks to the introduction of strikes. But it’s a place where grapplers hone their top-game and ground-and-pound skills. And allows for jiu-jitsu to be applied to a more combat oriented environment without the concern of boxing or kickboxing.
Combat Jiu-jitsu is Eddie Bravo’s brainchild. We got an early indication of what he was planning when he dropped hints on the Joe Rogan podcast last year.
Bravo mentioned: “It gets you ready for MMA better than grappling, that’s for sure” “And also there’s a lot of jiu-jitsu guys out there who are awesome that will never do MMA, they don’t want to learn Muay Thai, and this could be their professional sport. This could be the final frontier. I would think 90 percent of jiu-jitsu fans out there would rather see Marcelo Garcia and Xande Ribiero going at it with punches than just straight grappling.”
The common consensus is that combat jiu-jitsu could place BJJ in a larger spotlight and work to spread jiu-jitsu’s popularity. Combat jiu-jitsu aka CJJ has been pitched by Eddie Bravo as being a bit more attractive than pure BJJ tournaments. It’s going to help prepare jiu-jitsu guys for MMA and potentially evolve the sport.
However, to really draw out bigger names they will have to put up purses and they aren’t quite in a position to do that yet.
The Eddie Bravo Invitational (EBI) is a 16-man tournament that features submission-only grappling. For EBI 11 combat jiu-jitsu was introduced. The EBI tournament features a $20,000 take home prize and is designed or the fans.
Some People are Taking Combat Jiu-Jitsu To Another Level
Flexibility is a powerful tool to have in your arsenal for Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Some people are born more flexible than others but fortunately, we can all practice and improve our flexibility. It’s always a good idea to work on your stretches after a light warm up before you begin training.
Think of flexibility like strength training. While working out and being incredibly strong isn’t necessary for BJJ it certainly helps level up your game. Flexibility training is very similar to strength training, it won’t make or break your game but it will certainly give you an edge.
This stretch targets your groin and hip region. This is a great beginner stretch that isn’t too difficult. Sit on the ground, straighten your legs out and remember to straighten your spine for proper posture. While you grab and hold your ankles slowly press your knees downwards with your elbows.
Lying Spinal Stretch
This stretch will give your spine more flexibility and make you more limber. Start out by lying on your back with your arms stretched out to your left and right side. Left your legs to the sky, fold it over to the right side of your body. This stretch will aide in your spinal flexibility and will come in handy when people try to stack you while they are on your guard.
This is a counter pose to a forward bend. The bridge is a good beginner’s yoga stretch that helps you build additional flexibility in your back. Lie down on your back and place your feet shoulder-width apart. Press firmly on to your feet and lift your butt off the ground. Interlace your hands together press the fists down to the floor. This stretch also helps improve your bridging during rolling sessions.
Leg Cradle Stretch
Lower back injuries and pain are very common in jiu-jitsu fighters. The leg cradle stretch is great for stretching out your lower back. Perform this stretch laying down on your back, straighten out your legs and slowly lift your knee and grab it. Gently pull your left knee to your chest and hold steady for about a minute then return it to the starting position.
Standing and Reaching Hamstring Stretch
Stand up tall and bend forwards from the hips, reaching for your toes with your hands. The goal is to keep your legs straight and your back as flat as possible. Don’t worry if you can’t reach your feet with your hands just rest them as far down on your legs as possible.
While improving your flexibility won’t win you any tournaments it will make your jiu-jitsu game stronger. Integrate these stretches into your training regime and you will notice improvements over time!
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu vs. Judo. Which is the more effective martial art? Sure to the untrained eye they may appear similar. This is due to both disciplines having ancient roots tied to the Japanese art of jiu-jitsu.
Judo’s origin story is inseparable from its creator Kano Jigoro. Judo was created by Japanese educator Kano Jigoro. Kano’s father was a strong believer in education and as a result, Kano was well educated. Kano was an educator and athlete who was a pioneer in international sports. Kano placed focus on maximum efficiency with minimum effort. Around 1877, Kano began training in jiu-jitsu. During his training with Fukuda, Kano had trouble with a senior student at the school. A glimpse of innovative things to come with Kano, he began integrating unorthodox techniques from both wrestling and sambo. Around this time Kano realized that training harder wasn’t the answer. He began to learn new techniques that centered around throwing and off balancing opponents.
Jigoro Kano at just 21 years old took the best elements of each jiu-jitsu style at the time and created a new school. Kano first went to Europe in 1889 to introduce judo outside of Japan. In 1964, Kano’s dream came true, men’s judo was recognized as an official Olympic event.
Judo places a heavier emphasis on takedowns. There are three basic categories of techniques in judo. Throwing techniques, grappling techniques, and striking techniques. Judo is most prominently known for throwing and grappling techniques with greater emphasis being placed on throws and takedowns.
Judo techniques include attempts to throw or trip opponents. The aim is placing the opponent on their back and fall into three distinct stages:
Kano’s vision for judo was established around the principles of maximum efficiency with minimum effort. He believed that resisting a more powerful opponent will result in your defeat. But by adjusting to and evading your opponent’s attack will cause him to lose balance and you can turn their power against them.
The generally accepted theory embraced by most historians is that martial arts techniques originated in India with Buddhism. Buddhist monks were said to have greatly contributed to the early development of Jiu-Jitsu thanks to monks. These Monks were men of great wisdom who possess a knowledge of the human body. Specifically, they applied the laws of physics such as leverage, momentum, balance, center of gravity and weight manipulation.
Jiu-jitsu was heavily utilized and perfected on the battlefield in Japan during the 8th and 16th century. During this period Japan was wrought with constant civil war. Jiu-jitsu was used to combat armored samurai and armed opponents. Designed for warfare originally but after the end of the Feudal system in Japan, modifications were made to the art so it can be practiced.
Principles of Jiu-jitsu
The ability to achieve maximum output with minimum input is a core feature of jiu-jitsu. Brazilian jiu-jitsu was later developed out of the ground-fighting aspect of Judo. Brazilian jiu-jitsu traces its roots back to Mitsuyo Maeda.
The most striking difference in Brazilian jiu-jitsu is that the initial throw is just the beginning of the fight rather than the end. Once the fight in on the ground, both fighters attempt to transition into a dominant position to set up submissions. Brazilian jiu-jitsu utilizes techniques like joint-locks and chokeholds to subdue a larger opponent.
Primary Ground Positions in BJJ:
In conclusion, Judo focuses heavily on takedowns and throws. Almost 75% of training involves standing up and setting up takedowns. Whereas, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu focuses almost exclusively on the fight once the opponents hit the ground. However, most BJJ fighter’s cross train in other disciplines to develop takedowns as well.
Differences Between Judo and Jiu-Jitsu
Jiu-jitsu places heavy emphasis on ground grappling. This refers to all grappling techniques that are applied once the combatants are no longer in a standing position. An important feature of jiu-jitsu and most other ground grappling arts is establishing a dominant position. Dominant positions offer ground grapplers the opportunity to exhaust the opponent, execute a submission, or strike the opponent. Whereas, the grappler on the bottom is more concerned with escaping, improving their position, sweeping their opponent or reversing their position.
We get it when you are starting Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu takedowns can be very intimidating. It can be scary to shoot for single and double legs with the threat of headlocks, darce chokes etc.
Traditionally, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu encompasses everything that happens once you hit the ground. It doesn’t help that most schools have their students start sparring or rolling on the knees versus standing. This helps to prevent excessive injuries. Because of this issue there is a stigma surround takedown in BJJ.
Many eager white belts who have their first tournament feel a need to pull guard and just work from there. This can become problematic because grapplers who have a strong top game feel a need to pull guard and have to work from there.
However, takedowns are the mark of all grappling disciplines whether you are a Judo player, Wrestler or Sambo fighter. They all center around taking the fight to the ground. Let’s take a look at the top takedowns you should be working to level up your BJJ game.
The Double Leg Takedown
This is probably the first takedown you will learn. Any grappler should have a double leg takedown in their arsenal of attacks. It is one of the most commonly used takedowns whether in MMA, BJJ or general grappling. It requires good physical acumen in order to shoot in fast under your opponent and take them down with whatever variation you choose.
Single Leg Takedown
This takedown is very common as well. It is traditionally taught in wrestling, jiu-jitsu, and sambo. It involves trapping one of your opponents (or teammates) leg and using some variation depending on how your opponent reacts.
Arm Drag To Rear Leg Trip
This is probably one of my favorite takedowns. This is a fairly simple takedown which makes it an excellent takedown for beginners. After hitting the arm drag all you need to do is a transition to the back and hit a straight legged trip.
While this is technically still a variation on a single leg takedown the mechanics of the low single are very different. Basically, you need to lower your base as low you can go, shoot forward, cup behind your opponent’s heel with your hand and drive forward to score the takedown.
The Ankle Pick is a favorite among wrestlers and works well in BJJ. It is a relatively low risk, high reward technique that can set you up in a great position for passing the guard and attacking. In BJJ you want to apply this technique while grabbing the lapel as a grip, pull your opponent forward within range.
For new BJJ practitioners don’t be intimated by takedowns. Drill these 5 takedowns to get you ready for competition so you don’t have to rely on pulling guard and instead can apply your top game.
If you’re new to jiu-jitsu and grappling, in general, read our BJJ buyer’s guide to find the best bjj gi for you today!