Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ)


BJJ in Philadelphia Video Short

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) is a martial art and combat sport that focuses on grappling and especially ground fighting with the goal of gaining a dominant position from which to force an attacker to submit. The system developed from a modified version of pre-World War II Judo including some techniques from Japanese Jujutsu and with a focus on ne-waza (ground technique). It promotes the principle that a smaller, weaker person using leverage and proper technique can successfully defend themselves against a bigger, stronger assailant.

The very first Brazilian Jiu Jitsu school, Gracie Humaita, was started by Helio Gracie, in 1968 in Rio de Janeiro, and is still in practice today under the watchful eye of Helio’s son, Royler.  Maxercise is closely descended from Humaita through the great Saulo Ribeiro and Royler Gracie himself, under both of whose tutelage has given our instructors every tool to keep the Jiu Jitsu taught up to date and on the cutting edge.

The main emphasis in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is to dominate the opponent through application of technique and force them to quit (submit). By using the techniques of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, a smaller practitioner, male or female, can control much larger and stronger opponents and actually force the larger opponent to submit.

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu literally translates to, “the gentle art.” The philosophy is that not only can you, but that you actually should, learn to avoid the use of strength.  Controlling your emotions, you should be able to obtain a position of dominance without using your strength, rather than necessarily immediately attempting to make the opponent submit.

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu can be trained for self defense, sport grappling tournaments – gi and no-gi, and mixed martial arts (MMA) competition. Sparring and live drilling play a major role in training, and a premium is placed on performance, especially in competition.

The live component of the art creates some of the most realistic real-world preparation available in the martial arts world today.  It is one thing to be able to drill with an accomodating training partner, and quite another to be able to dominate someone who is resisting you, especially someone also skilled.  You will not find someone in the street whose movements will be ‘cooperative’.

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu gives you the advantage of knowing what to do on the ground, where the vast majority of fights end up, whether it is by the clumsy nature of fighting itself, or because one of the combatants directed it there.  Most people have no idea what to do once they’ve fallen.

Alone in the Philadelphia area, Maxercise has the honored distinction of building world champions from the ground up.  We have many students that joined us with no prior experience with any other Brazilian Jiu Jitsu school who now own regional, national, and international titles.  Those who choose not to compete can take pride in having helped build such a team, as it is the efforts and training of everyone that push us forward.