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BJJ Origin and History

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu has evolved as an offshoot of Jiu-Jitsu - which is known as the oldest form of martial art. It uses grappling and ground fighting techniques to fight a stronger and larger opponent. It uses joint locks, compression locks and chokeholds to make the opponent submit.

Jiu-Jitsu was born nearly 4000 years ago. It was developed as a martial art by Indian and Budhist monks. This art focuses on pressure points, balance and the centre of gravity to accomplish movements so that an individual can defend himself with minimum effort.

As Jiu-Jitsu spread across different lands, various forms of modern martial arts evolved from it. Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is one of them. Like Jiu-Jitsu, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu also aims at acquiring a dominant position and forcing the attacker to submit. It came into existence when Mitsuyo Maeda, a Japanese judoka, immigrated to Brazil in 1910’s. However, he called the art Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. ‘Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu’ also came to be known as Gracie Jiu-Jitsu when Gastão Gracie, a Brazilian businessman, trained his son Carlos in this art, who carried the trend forward. The Gracies wanted to create a martial art form that could be renowned at the national level. This was an important factor that led to Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu’s popularity.

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu gained popularity as a martial art in the 1990’s when Royce Gracie won the Ultimate Fighting Championship thrice. This was a single elimination tournament. Experts of varied fighting styles were competing and they were larger and stronger that Gracie. He won the tournament and drew everyone’s attention to this mix of ground fighting and grappling.

Over the years, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu has grown as a mixed martial art. It has gained recognition worldwide, not only as a combat technique, but also as a popular sport and a way to stay fit.

 

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