Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is a martial art that focuses on defeating an opponent by submitting them with chokes and joint locks. It originated from Japanese Jiu-Jitsu where striking an armored opponent, such as a samurai was seen as impractical. Jiu-Jitsu was introduced to Brazil by among others, Mitsuyo Maeda who was a Jiu-Jitsu/Judo expert and prizefighter.
He taught Carlos Gracie who in turn taught his younger brothers, including Helio Gracie, Japanese Jiu-Jitsu. Over the decades the Gracie family refined what they had been taught and demonstrated the effectiveness of their Gracie Jiu-Jitsu against all striking and wrestling opponents in Vale Tudo (Anything goes) competitions popular in Brazil at the time. They brought Gracie or Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu to a worldwide audience with UFC 1 in 1993.
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu has a number of aspects which distinguishes it from traditional Japanese Jiu-JItsu and other grappling/wrestling based martial arts.
- Fighting Strategy - A smaller BJJ practitioner will bring their larger opponent to the ground where the size advantage is minimised and the opponent's ability to strike is restricted.
- Positional Hierarchy - Once on the ground, some positions are more dominant than others in that they offer greater opportunities to strike and submit an opponent and less risk that the opponent will do the same.
- Efficient Biomechanics - There is much less emphasis on using the strength of individual muscles and more emphasis on using even weight distribution of the whole body to apply leverage.
- Live sparring - This is where strategies and techniques are hardwired into the nervous system as implicit memory by two people actively trying to submit each other. As only a diamond can cut another diamond, when two BJJ practitioners spar, this is where real measurable skill is obtained.
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu classes in Golden Tiger Academy - Blanchardstown are taught by Michael O'Leary who is a blue belt under Ken Byrne, the head of Golden Tiger Academy - Ireland. Ken was awarded his brown belt by the EGJJF on the 6th of December 2019.