The Ultimate Guide to Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Belt System


Today, we will be looking at the various BJJ belts and their meanings.

Brazilian jiu jitsu belt system beginners will be surprised to learn that the belt system is more strict than other forms of martial art. It can take over 10 years to obtain a black belt.

The learning stages that each belt is associated with determine how each BJJ level is defined today. Each belt stage is associated with specific indicators that indicate the athlete’s skill level and mind set.

The breakdown of BJJ’s belt levels will reduce frustrations that students experience when they are stuck at one belt. BJJ students need to understand that the emotions and experiences they are feeling at this skill level are normal.

Here’s a quick summary of today’s article:

  • Unconscious incompetence – White belt You don’t know anything you don’t already know.
  • Blue belt- Conscious incompetence. You don’t know what you don’t know.
  • Purple belt- Conscious competence. You know what you should do.
  • Brown belt – Unconscious competence. You only do what you know.

Black belt – You are only conscious. Incompetence or competence are not important to you. You do Jiu Jitsu because you love it. It is not your goal to tap people out. It doesn’t matter if you get tapped out. Jiu Jitsu is its own reward.

BJJ Belt System: White Belt

This is the first belt. This is your first attempt at the sport. It is important to have a reference point for everything you learn in the future. This is the foundation knowledge and movement patterns that will be used to build all your future skills.

The white belt is a cognitive stage of your learning. This means that most of your attention and energy will be focused on the technique. Each movement will be linked to a thought. Each sequence will be spoken out loud. You will need to be instructed on what to do and how to do it. This stage will largely require the assistance of others.

BJJ Belt System: Blue Belt

Blue belt students will be able to identify and attack the most important positions.

Blue belts are awarded to students who can defend themselves and escape from all major positions.

You will become conscious incompetent as a blue belt. While you will still make fundamental mistakes, you’ll have enough knowledge to be able to identify and fix them. You may discover that your game is lacking certain techniques or that you need to improve on some details.

As a blue belt, you will be able to develop your skills more independently. You will be able ask questions and engage in dialogue with your coaches and training partners to improve your Jiu Jitsu. You’ll see your mistakes as a blue belt.

BJJ Belt System: Purple Belt

A purple belt should have two tenets: Momentum and Movement.

As a purple belt, you’ll have greater ease and smoothness. This stage is where you will be able to move with your weight in the correct place. You’ll also learn how to manipulate the momentum and weight of your opponent.

Additionally, you will learn how to minimize wasted movements and eliminate unnecessary actions that are keeping you from becoming more efficient and fluid.

You will also improve your defense skills and spend more time working on your weaker skills in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Many people find this part frustrating as they spend most of their purple belt stage learning things that they don’t like.

Additionally, you should be familiar with all Guard configurations and be able to specialize in one or two of them.

Purple belts will learn to coordinate their actions. Simple compound attacks such as armbar to triangle choke will be possible.

Performance gains at the blue belt and white belt stages will be less evident and smaller than before. Many purple belts will feel frustrated and discouraged as they realize they are not improving quickly.

Brown Belt

As the last belt before you reach black belt, you should know very few moves and positions that are not familiar to your brown belt level. You should be able to teach BJJ to others at this belt.

You should also be able to defeat your opponent from the top and have well-developed counters for every move they throw at you. You will also have a number of signature moves that you can use against any opponent.

You are a brown belt and you are beginning to put together complex attacks, such as triangle, armbar, and omoplata. Your skill is built on smoothness and efficiency.

A brown belt will almost exclusively be a visual learner. It’s possible to see a new technique, and be able almost immediately to reproduce it.

Brown belts are the most easy students to coach. They will be able show you a move once or twice, and then they’ll be perfectly able to copy it.

Black Belt

This is the ultimate achievement in martial arts. The black belt holder has spent years studying and training to achieve this rank. You must have complete control over your body, movements, and ego.

Your moves should be inspiring from the perspective of your audience as a black belt. As you might expect, being a black belt is a sign that you are an expert in Jiu Jitsu.

You have a deep and precise understanding of Jiu Jitsu. You should be able to create and modify your own techniques and attacks at the black belt level. Attacks and defenses should be done instinctively, without thinking. Black belts consider excessive strength to be an enemy and will seek out the best leverage for every technique.

Jiu Jitsu requires a high level mindset and attitude. Black belts put a lot of effort into the process. Jiu Jitsu black Belts see Jiu Jitsu as the reward. Black belts love the rolling, moving gracefully, executing attacks reflexively, and problem solving in real-time.