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Frequently Asked Questions

What Is Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu?

Brazilian Jiu-jitsu is a grappling-based martial art that utilizes leverage to control an opponent or attacker which can lead to submission, typically via chokes or joint locks.  While striking is not a primary tool in BJJ, we do go over the use of strikes, as well as how to defend against them.  BJJ is an excellent tool for learning how to control and subdue someone, with minimal physical risk to both parties.

Do I need to get in shape before I start?

No way! If you want to be a runner, go run! If you want to be stronger, lift weights! If you want to do BJJ or those!  Delaying your getting started will actually hold you back from the things you need to be working on. Everybody was a beginner once, and there is zero expectation for a new student to walk in the door and be anything but that - a beginner. Just show up!

What should I expect during class?

The typical flow from walking through the door is - sign in on the tablet next to the front desk, change clothes in either the dressing room or the bathroom, wait for class to start, scrub your feet in the foot washing tub (do not skip), and step onto the mat. The instructor will start the warm-ups, which usually last around 15 minutes, then the technique(s) of the day will be covered and practiced, after that (if it's part of that class) grappling (sparring) starts. Once all of that is done, class is over. Our class times range from 45 minutes to an hour and a half. Sometimes they run longer.

Do I have to grapple/spar?

(Coach is about to get real honest.) It depends. My goal for you is to make you a more confident, capable person who can walk into any room and KNOW that you'll be fine.  If what we cover never gets pressure tested, it's impossible for us to make that goal. Does that mean you'll be grappling on day 1? Absolutely not. You won't be anyway, because you'll be starting in Fundamentals Class, where there is no grappling. If you never want to grapple, you're more than welcome to stick with the Fundamentals Class. However, I can't look you in the eye and tell you that you're capable of defending yourself, if that's the path you choose.  The choice is 100% yours, but I won't lie to you and tell you how tough you are and how you're ready to take on the world if that's not where you are. You can absolutely find schools that will do that, if that's what you want. This school will never be one of them. I will never throw you to the wolves, but at some point, you have to get out the nest if you expect to fly.

Why is there no grappling in the Fundamentals Class?

There are several reasons, but probably the second most important reason (safety being the first) is that we want you to focus on learning the techniques. If on the drive home, you're thinking about how you could have done your double leg take-down better, that's what will marinate in your brain. That's what we want. If you grapple, you will 100% be thinking about what happened while you were grappling and how to fix it. You'll inadvertently purge everything you worked on in class by heading straight to YouTube, looking for answers. Not good. Especially when you have to pass a test on what was gone over in class, and not what you saw on the internet. 

How Does The Belt System Work?

In jiu-jitsu the primary belts are white, blue, purple, brown, and black. Typically, there are four stripes put on the belt between belt colors. How each person advances depends on that person. This is an individual journey, and rank advancement is a process where there are several components taken into account. Attendance, punctuality, attentiveness, accountability, respect, coachability, discipline, and being a good team member/training partner are big pieces of that. Notice that "being good at jiu-jitsu" isn't on that list? Check the boxes listed, and that part will take care of itself.

Do I have To Compete?

No.There is no expectation or requirement to enter sport competitions.Competition is certainly encouraged and supported throughout our community and students, but is in no way required.

What if I want to compete? How long should I wait?

If you want to compete, we've got a pretty successful history of that, and can definitely help you get to the podium...but it takes time. Six months of consistent, regular class attendance is the minimum recommendation for BJJ competition. As an adult, you can sign up for whatever you want, whenever you want, but don't expect to have a good time. 

What Do I Wear To Class?

Unless a class is specifically labeled otherwise (like our kickboxing classes), our classes are done in a gi (uniform). We use the gi as an option for control, and sometimes a submission. Close-fitting clothes worn under the gi, like a compression top/rash guard/sports bra and compression shorts/yoga pants are highly recommended.

What About Injuries? Will I Get Hurt?

First and foremost, our main objective in any of our classes is safety for yourself and for your partner. Jiu-jitsu is a contact art and bumps and bruises are part of that environment. So while injuries are certainly not a part of everyday class, they do happen. New students don’t do full resistance training until we, as the coaches, and the student feels prepared to be in that situation. This is why we have our Fundamentals Program. Going through this program not only gives you a firm grasp of the basics, but gives you an opportunity to dip your toes into the physical contact involved with BJJ without the risk of injury to you or your partner.

What If I Have Previous Injuries?

One of the best things about training jiu-jitsu is that is suitable for everyone. Our program is scalable regardless of size, weight, age, or fitness level. Jiu-jitsu has changed the lives of many of our students from a physical standpoint. From weight loss to better flexibility, jiu-jitsu is for everyone. If you have previous injuries, just let us and your partner know and whatever we are learning can typically be modified for your safety.

Do you teach MMA?

MMA is a rule set, not a style. It's Mixed Martial Arts. So, in the sport of MMA, they take a bit of this, a bit of that, and mix them. There are some styles that tend to do better than others. Things like BJJ, wrestling, and kickboxing seem to be the dominant elements to MMA. There are schools and clubs that are taking what works for that rule set and training those parts. Our recommendation before entertaining the idea of MMA is having three kickboxing fights and earning a blue belt in BJJ.

What about Self Defense?

There is no better one-on-one self defense system than BJJ. That's not an opinion. It's proven itself out many times over. I could go on for a very long time about this.  

Speaking of Self Defense, what about multiple attackers and weapons?

There is no fighting system that adequately addresses multiple attackers. None. The best defense against multiple attackers is having your shoes laced up tight and a decent 100yd dash time to go with that. The same holds true with weapons, unless we get really specific with the context of the situation. That's just the reality of the situation. Be careful with arm-chair quarterbacking this stuff. You can "what if" your way right into the same amount of reality that you'd find in an action movie. 

You have BJJ and Kickboxing, can I do both?

Absolutely. We have membership options for Jiu-Jitsu, Kickboxing, or both (All Inclusive).

How does Kickboxing work?

We have two classes. Fitness Class and Fighter's Class. In the Fitness Class, it's all bag work with some stretching. We don't hit each other in that class. In Fighter's Class, we use each other instead of the heavy bag. You don't have to do the Fighter's Class to do the Fitness Class, but attendance in the Fitness Class is mandatory for attending the Fighter's Class.  For the Fitness Class, all you need is a set of boxing gloves. For the Fighter's Class, you need boxing gloves (16oz for males over 140lbs), shin guards, and a mouth piece/gum shield. We have all of that equipment available for purchase.