BJJ Seminar with Prof James

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Safe?

For a contact sport, yes. When looking at injuries per 1000 competitors BJJ is about 4x safer than football and 2x safer than soccer. It is about 3x safer than other martial arts like Tae Kwon Do and Judo. Plus practice in the academy is going to be safer than going at a more intense competition speed.

I take injury prevention seriously here in Broomfield. Most academies to a poor job of warming up. They are either too gung-ho on it so that people are either too exhausted and start making bad decisions or the upper belts start skipping the warmup and coming in late to class so their body isn’t warmed up enough. We do an individual warmup that is designed to get the body ready for training, but not completely exhaust you. 

Most academies probably do too much free training and not enough positional training. Positional training is the basis for skill development and our academy trains in the beginner classes it is from positions where people will have an idea on what they are doing because they learned moves from that position in class before. Positional training cuts down on injuries because it keeps rolling contained to specific positions and narrows the scope to more predictable moves.

Also we have rules and etiquette clearly marked so that people know which moves are allowed, that the responsibility is to take care of the person being submitted. 

Plus we have one of the best mats systems out there with tatami mats over a floating floor.

Lastly I think a lot of this comes down to culture, taking care of partners and that training should be like having a conversation. If you are always yelling (training aggressively) you will only be able to talk to others that are always yelling, if they are training more chill, then you should try to match that.

Do I have to be in shape to start?

No. We have students start who are 350 lbs. I have black belts who were 60lbs overweight software engineers when they started.

Do I need to bring anything to the intro lesson?

If you want to wear some athletic shirt and shorts that would be great. I just wouldn’t recommend a cotton t-shirt. We will have the rest of the uniform waiting for you. Optionally you could bring a water bottle, but we have cups for water if not. 

What is your Drop In Policy?

If you have a paid membership at another academy and you are visiting from out of state, then feel free to drop in. If you are going to be staying for a week or more, we will use a pro-rated membership fee.

If you live in Colorado and have a paid membership at Six Blades/Lovato Jr affiliates, Easton academies or Katharo academy feel free to drop in for an randori, we have a reciprocal drop-in policy with these academies. 

If you don’t have a paid membership at one of those academies or are training at a different academy, then we don’t allow drop ins for randoris. This is for the safety of our student base.  

What if I have to come to class early or late?

It is better to train and do what you can than not come to class. 

How are your adult classes structured?

I go into more in depth on the perfect beginner class. But basically a 5 minute warmup done individually, 3 techniques either 1 wrestling takedown and 2 ground or 3 ground depending on the class. Training from position of the day for 20 minutes. The training portion is optional, you can also review the techniques shown while others are training. We also split up the beginners by size.

Do you offer No-Gi Classes

Yes, we have  no-gi classes 3 days a week. With Sunday also having a no-gi open mat afterwards. I love no-gi, wrestling takedowns and leglocks so have at it.

What is your tuition/pricing?

Here is a link to get our pricing.

We don’t do punch cards because it wouldn’t be mutually beneficial. I want to teach and spend my time with people who are committed to getting better. You can get very good training only a couple times a week, but you have to be consistent with it. 

Do you require that we wear your gi/uniform?

No. We sell Breakpoint and Fuji gis, but if you want to look online here are some other recommendations.

If you want to wear patches great. We do suggest them for regional tournaments because it makes our job as coaches easier. They are required for international competition because our students will be representing the six blades association. 

I earned a belt, but haven't trained in forever, should I start back at white belt?

No. I have never demoted anyone. A belt promotion marks a moment in time on your journey. You ability on the mats will go up and down with different life circumstances. Plus I think that skills come back just like strength comes back when you return to lifting weights. 

What is the difference between Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and Japanese Ju-Jitsu

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is a grappling art more akin to wrestling or Judo with a high degree of focus on ground technique and training with resisting opponents. Japanese Ju-Jitsu is more akin to Akido with a large focus on wristlocks and breakfalls and choreographed situations. Historically Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu came from Judo in the early 1900s which was then brought over to Brazil. 

What is the kids belt system?

We follow the IBJJF belt system for kids. So white belt is the first belt, then grey and white at 6 months, grey belt another six months after that and then belts go yearly. The students get stripes every month to mark their progress.

Do the kids train and drill with each other?

Yes, it is jiu-jitsu. The youngest age group does not apply submissions during rolling, but they do learn submissions. 

My child has a learning disability, can they train?

We have some students with learning disabilities, but they must be able to do a group class and not not require too much extra attention and must be able to demonstrate control to not hurt others. Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is amazing for helping kids and our mission is to improve lives through BJJ, but some students need more 1 on 1 attention than we can provide in a group class. Part of the reason we require a 1 on 1 introductory class is to determine if the child is right for academy as much as the other way around.

What age can my child start training?

We have some 4 year old students, we see better success with 5 and 6 year old children. That is why we do an introductory lesson to judge. I would say about 25% of 4 year olds are at the right stage. My own son is 4 years old and I think he is best off waiting as well. Some of our best 6 and 7 year old students we had wait a bit before starting.  

Do you have testing fees/belt promotion fees?

No. This is very common in other martial arts like Tae Kwon Do and if you are thinking about other martial arts you should ask about this. 

Does your kids program do life skills or character development?

Yes. Some Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu academies (mostly MMA ones) don’t focus on building character with their kids. We have monthly mat chats that go over Goal Setting, Impulse Control, Growth Mindset along with dealing with Bullying as well.

Why should we choose BJJ for our child instead of other martial arts?

I go over this more in  BJJ is the Best Martial Art  for Kids, but basically striking isn’t effective for self defense because most fights involve grappling (you can get away from someone trying to punch you but you have to grapple when they grab you). Also kids don’t have enough strength or weight to generate knock out power (there are very few knockouts in the lower weight classes of the UFC compared to heavyweights). So that eliminates Tae Kwon Do, Karate, etc. 

Then you have other martial arts like Krav Maga which are going to teach eye gouges, groin strikes which you can’t train with full resistance. Without resistance you are really just going to be guessing on their reaction so it ends up in fantasy land. 

So you are left with Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Then when you are picking which BJJ place to go with, choose one that has both good training and live rolling combined with one that has a family environment and character development.

Do you have kids competition preperation?

Yes! This isn’t on the schedule, but we announce it in class, usually this happens every few weeks on Friday nights. I don’t push competition for any age group and almost discourage it a bit under 10 years old. I just find there is too much burnout with competition in younger kids and rarely see the highly competitive 7 year maintain that energy for competition by the time they are hitting late teens and early adulthood. So I think it is better to have them slowly ramp up at ages 10+. You see this a lot in the Colorado wrestling community where they have a very competitive program that produces nationally ranked under 10-12 year olds, but those same kids aren’t going to the best college programs and beyond. Kids of any age can do competition prep classes and get themselves used to the rigors of competition.