What is Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ)? Q&A with Professor Justin Bounauito

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If you were a fan of pro wrestling in the 1970’s and 1980’s, you may remember when, in 1993, a new competition was launched which was meant to be the “real” version of was offered up as “sports entertainment” by the WWE (WWF back then), called the Ultimate Fighting Championship, now known as the UFC, which aired on November 12, 1993.

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The UFC is, of course, wildly popular around the world, but when it first started, it was a relatively small enterprise, and it featured various forms of martial arts competing against each other in the “octagon”, where there were basically no rules at all in the beginning.

This author remembers a time when, at a local comic book store in my hometown, an employee by the name of Mike, who was about the size of a large fridge, loaned me, back in ’94, a few video cassettes, including some wrestling matches in Japan, as well as UFC 1.

I didn’t know it then, but this was my introduction to Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, after I witnessed the the legendary match between Ken Shamrock and Royce Gracie.

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The Gracie family name has long been linked to Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, which has slowly but surely taken its place in the top echelon of formidable martial arts that often features serious competitors, and can seemingly take on all comers. In fact, part of the MO of BJJ is help give the upper hand to smaller and perhaps weaker fighters, using a series of grappling techniques.

That said, if you’re totally new to martial arts, you might be wondering – what’s the difference between Jiu Jitsu and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu?  And, is Brazilian Jiu Jitsu a good way to defend yourself if you find yourself involved in some sort of altercation?

We ask this latter question because here at Your Home Security Watch, we are interested in learning as many ways to effectiveness defend yourself and your family, in ways that both use technology, and also ways that simply rely on your own wits and physicality.  In this way, BJJ seems to be the perfect candidate for techniques one might want to learn.

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Q&A with Professor Justin Bounauito

For those who are brand new to Jiu Jitsu, and particularly Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, we are speaking today with Professor Justin Bounauito, founder of Fastidious Jiu Jitsu Academy in Palm Bay, Florida, in order to answer some fundamental questions about Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.

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From the Fastidious BJJ website, it says:

“Justin started his journey in Martial Arts at 8-years-old. He started with NinJutsu then went on to study Taekwondo, Boxing, Wrestling and earned his Black Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu representing the Carlson Gracie lineage.

He began teaching martial arts in 2009. In 2017 Justin started representing American Killer Bees and is a 1st Degree Black Belt under Professor Israel Gomes of the world renowned association.”

Enjoy our Q&A with Professor Justin Bounauito!  We think you will find it insightful.

Q: What is Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ) and who invented it?

It traces back to 1914 Brazil, where it was originally taught as Judo and eventually transformed into Jiu Jitsu.  Because of the Newaza (Ground Fighting) style, the Gracie Family is the most notable for its development.

Here’s a video that will teach something of the history of Jiu Jitsu, and specifically, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, according to one of the members of the Gracie family, Rener Gracie.

Q: How does Jiu Jitsu compare with its non-Brazilian counterpart?

BJJ is more ground grappling focused.

Q: Would you say Brazilian Jiu Jitsu good for self defense?

Yes its great for self defense by itself, or mixed with a striking art.

Here is a video showing some basic concepts for striking techniques, courtesy of Eddie Kone on Youtube.

Q: Does BJJ teach striking?

Traditional BJJ yes, Sport BJJ not to much.

Q: Does BJJ build muscle / provide a good workout?

Yes, it’s an entire body workout.

Here’s a video showing a total body workout using BJJ featuring Ultimate Training.

Q: Is Brazilian Jiu Jitsu effective in a street fight?

Yes, 90% of street fights go to the ground.

Q: How would someone use Brazilian Jiu Jitsu against a bear? (asking for a friend)

Very carefully – they bite.

Here’s a video compilation of real people employing BJJ out in the real world.  Very handy in certain situations.

Q: How much does Brazilian Jiu Jitsu cost at your school? ie. how much are classes?

We have programs that start at $79 a month.

Q: How does BJJ stack up against other martial arts, in your estimation?

Very well, as there are tons of BJJ vs Other Martial Arts videos around the internet.

Here’s an example.

Is there a correct way to tie a BJJ belt?

Yes there is – a few different ways.

Q: Does BJJ have kata?

Nope – we spar (roll) to practice our technique.

Thanks Justin!

And thanks for reading!  If you have a comment or question, please leave it below in the comments section.

Like any martial art, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu takes time and focus to become skilled at it.  It is only then that you can truly reap the benefits of such a pragmatic and effective form of self-defense.

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