Jiu-Jitsu is a Japanese martial art dating back to the 16th century, which was developed by warrior samurais as a method of combat as a defense against an armed opponent. The word Jiu-Jitsu, or Jujutsu, roughly translates to “gentle art”, which connects with the fact that its prime focus is precisely in creating self-defense mechanisms against aggressors by turning their own strength against them, which makes it a highly relevant tool to know, especially given today’s increasing crime rates.

Why is Jiu-Jitsu so useful for self-defense?

Jiu-Jitsu is mostly based on grappling techniques to pin your opponent down and block attacks. These techniques were developed around the idea that if your opponent is bigger and stronger than you or has a weapon, you can use his own strength against him rather than opposing it and mostly likely, lose. This sounds pretty much like the most accurate situation you could be in if confronted by a criminal, in which you will probably stand to lose.

And not only will the self-defense side of Jiu-Jitsu prepare you for an assault in order to block an attack and be able to escape, but if you choose to also train for it competitively, you will develop skills that will let you take down even the strongest of opponents in case you were involved in, say, an unprovoked street fight, without having to resort to any kind of strike.

Jiu-Jitsu For All Kinds Of People

One of the most important reasons for which Jiu-Jitsu has become so popular in recent years, is that there are many variations, schools, and methods that can adapt to all kinds of people, no matter what gender, age, or body type they have. There are also many levels and rankings you must accomplish as you move up the skills ladder, so anyone can begin at base level and work their way up as they develop their abilities. As you improve your knowledge, you will learn to punch, kick, joint-lock and ground-fight well enough to make you competent to deal with a potentially dangerous attacker.

In fact, the gentle art of Jiu-Jitsu is so versatile it can be used as a self-defense mechanism for all family members to learn, including women, children and seniors. In the case of women in particular, learning some sort of self-defense technique has become an almost indispensable requirement in order to ensure their safety in a world that is still highly aggressive against the female gender.

Jiu-Jitsu over other martial arts

There is great debate around which martial arts should be learned to better prepare you for a street assault. There really is no right answer, since each martial art takes a singular approach to combat and will focus on developing different kinds of skills that could be useful in an attack. Our recommendation is that in order to be better prepared for all types of attacks, you can benefit from training in an art with a broader coverage, and Jiu-Jitsu or Judo will definitely be up to the challenge. If you are looking for a deeper focus on ground-fighting and takedowns, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu will be the way to go.

Jiu-Jitsu Self Defense Techniques

So what kind of techniques does Jiu-Jitsu use as self-defense mechanisms, you ask? Well, there are three main categories self-defense moves can be classified in. The first one includes all pain-compliance techniques, widely used during Jiu-Jitsu training and competing, that involve crushing muscles or extending joints in painful directions. Examples of these techniques are leg locks, calf crushing, foot locks, bicep locks, and extending the elbow, knee or neck. The second category are breaking techniques, which target the joints, and not really breaks bones, nevertheless, the moves look to hyperextend the joint and rupture the ligaments, and could also sometimes result in a broken bone. Moves include cross-body armbars and short armbars. The third category refers to choking techniques, which can be dangerous if improperly executed since you could actually kill your opponent. The different choking moves revolve around blocking air and blood sources, especially the arteries around the neck.

It is no longer enough to be aware of your surroundings when you go out to the street and know which parts of town to stick to. Anybody can be victim of an attack, for which knowing how to defend yourself could prepare you for a life threatening situation against you and your loved ones. Today’s world is becoming more and more dangerous, and nobody can really ensure your safety, but yourself. Stop being afraid, and become empowered by taking Jiu-Jitsu lessons in self-defense techniques that will change how you feel every time you walk out your front door.