What Is The Difference Between Japanese Jiu Jitsu And BJJ


Practicing the right material art is a great way to train your health and protect yourself. Among the top picks for you at this moment, Jiu Jitsu and BJJ are the most popular and effective training. Before joining any club or class for this sport, you should take the difference between Japanese Jiu Jitsu and BJJ into consideration. 

Here is all you need to know.

What To Know About Jiu Jitsu?

The term Jiu-Jitsu has been used in Germany and Brazil with the meaning “the art of soft” since the beginning of the 20th century.

When you take a look at martial arts history, this Japanese Action is well known as a thriving and survival technique. Originating from the time when Ninjas and Samurai joined the combat that resulted in increasing fatalities risk, Jiu-Jitsu worked as a martial art for normal people to protect themselves from the mounting combat in the society.


Jiu-Jitsu first appeared in Sengoku time in the mid-16th century as Takenouchi-ryū – its oldest form. In this period, the material art required people to do choking and throwing acts using small weapons like daggers.

During the 17th century, the reduction of using weapons and armors led to the requirement for hand-to-hand martial art.   

That is why people have created many innovative and new skill targets to harm the areas above the shoulder and chest part.

In the 18th century, these techniques were less popular due to the fact that people aim to create the distraction act rather than to use much energy in fighting.

At the moment, Jiu Jitsu works as a daily combat skill and plays an important role in training for the military in many countries. Its’ form also serves as a sport on Olympic occasions.


The basic technique of Japanese Jiu-Jitsu focuses mainly on throwing, pinning, and locking.

In the beginning, the striking method is not the target of the fighter as their opponent always wears armor, and grappling is mostly the solution.

However, for now, instructors use striking as a separate or set up action. The target of this technique might vary in different cases when disarming is sufficient for protection.

As the training sessions are normally friendly and not hostile as in the real battlefield, the serious injuries might be limited. However, it still requires people to focus on dealing with any deadly risk of any moves within the practicing sessions.

What To Know About Bjj?

Known as a sport as well as a martial art, BJJ technique originated from the fundamentals of Kodokan judo fighting fundamentals.

The feature of this judo technique is that size is not the matter. More specifically, a weak person can stand against a stronger opponent. This can be the case when one must take his opposition on the ground before applying all the trading tools to win the fight. BJJ includes locking and chokeholds, which are perfect for self-defense targets. BJJ has now become popular in sports under grappling tournaments.


The BJJ foundation must be from the adventure to Brazil of Mitsuyo Maeda that targets introducing the Kodokan art of fighting. In 1914, Maeda arrived in Brazil and accepted many challenges from boxers and wrestlers.

Impressed by his great performances, Carlos Gracie had considered Maeda as a teacher and expressed his desire to learn the art. He then also disseminated the technique to his successor and siblings.

Among them, Helio Gracie played an important role in BJJ development when he applied Maeda’s judo with the technique for ground fighting due to his small physique. With the immigrant Gracie family to the US in the 1980’s, BJJ became popular with their academy.

Soon enough, MMA fighters from worldwide who apply kicking and punching action had lost over BJJ rivals. A famous event is Royce Gracie’s continuous wins within the Ultimate Fighting Championship.


In Brazil, BJJ appears in four practicing forms, including Gracie Barra, Humaita, Carlson, and Alliance Jiu-Jitsu.

As mentioned above, BJJ techniques focus on ground fighting, which reduces the need for standing strategies.

This unique action requires you to practice at a rapid and intense pace in practicing drills.

With the act of sparring and rolling as the main contributor, BJJ’s goal is the submission of the opponent. It is not a big deal whether or not you are small; when you are in the match with your rival, you might take the lead and beat him or her.

Although the submission nature varies depending on your opposition’s different position and you, the top popular positions must be the full and back mount or side control. 

For more understanding, the techniques for submission contain two main pools that are chokes and Joint-locks. The Joint-lock is to isolate your rival limb before having a lever for dislocating the joint.

Chokes might interrupt the blood supply to the brain, which can easily result in an unconscious situation. Hence, in real practice, once the opponent offers the signal of being defeated through tapping, you must release him in an appropriate and calculated manner.

The Difference Between Japanese Jiu Jitsu and Bjj

After an overview of these two martial arts, it is essential to find and understand Jiu Jitsu and BJJ’s differences.

While both BJJ and Jiu Jitsu are related to each other with their histories, these two styles are different in the way of practicing and applying within the day. Well, understanding their difference allows you to pick up the right style that you want to learn and improve your knowledge of the top martial arts in the world for now.

For Jiu-Jitsu, even though this technique, in general, has shown up for hundreds of years, it depends mostly on the original techniques and principles. 

First invented for samurai, this Japanese martial art is most suitable for any combat in real-life. Normally taught in a traditional Japanese background, Jiu-Jitsu greatly values discipline. However, this Japanese version will require you to be strong to have a better chance of winning.

Meanwhile, the BJJ primarily works as a sport with the target of grappling. As a result, some BJJ techniques might not work for situations in your daily life but can help you reach a point in combat. 

A special thing about BJJ is that in case your rival is stronger or taller than you, BJJ can be your helpful assistant as it turns the power factor into useless, and the technique of the sport is all you need to get the win.

It is impossible to decide which one is better. While the Japanese martial art focuses mainly on self-defense and defeats the opponent in the fastest way possible, the Brazilian one targets both attack and offense. So in all, it is best if you can practice and master both these martial art so that you can get the win in any case.

Some Last Words

That is all about the difference between Japanese Jiu Jitsu and BJJ. You might have all the information you need to have the right choice for joining a martial art class. It will depend on your target of learning to participate in the professional competition or protect yourself from any fight that you can have Jiu Jitsu or BJJ as your sport. 

Hope you have the best time in learning and practicing these two martial arts!

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