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When in distress, we often result to violence which is driven by hatred and anger. Regardless how we look at it, violence does more harm than good as it will lead to unfortunate events, even to innocent bystanders. 

Jiu Jitsu, which roughly translates to ‘gentle action’, is an unarmed close combat martial art from Japan. It is the battlefield art of the elite Japanese warriors called Samurai,  who fought with honour, bravery, and selflessness.

The movements of Jiu Jitsu were developed to increase the combat effectiveness when the Samurai is unarmed or on foot. Due to the Samurai heavy armour,  movements were restricted. Hence, close combat movements such as throws, joint locks, and strangles are more functional.

Centuries later, in 1914, a Jiu Jitsu practitioner called Mitsuo Maeda introduced Jiu Jitsu to the western world. He travelled to Brazil and trained Carlos Gracie, son of a local politician. After years of training, Carlos was able to refine what Mitsuo had taught him and opened the first Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Academy in 1925.

Due to popular demand, Jiu Jitsu also made its way to America. If you are looking for a place to try Jiu Jitsu, these are some of our suggestions:

  1. Alliance Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Carlsbad

Upon completing his Jiu Jitsu practice with Rolls Gracis in Copacabana, Brazil, Jacare, founder of this academy, believes that Jiu Jitsu is not just a martial art. It is also an art of shared kindness, self-control, and respect. Be it towards yourself, or towards your enemy. Alliance Brazilian Jiu Jitsu conducts a variety of classes including Traditional Jiu Jitsu, No Gi Jiu Jitsu, and Kids Program. They offer a free trial class for newcomers. 

2. Gracie Jiu Jitsu, Carlsbad/Vista/Oceanside/San Marcos/Encinatas/San Diego

Those who join this academy will obtain lessons from Nick Stefan, a 4th Degree Black Belt holder who has been practicing martial arts since the age of 10. As a person who has devoted his life to martial arts, he ensures that his students get the best outcome through systematic lessons at all levels. There are also specialized programs for women and children. Fees at Gracie Jiu Jitsu starts from $25.

3. Rada Jiu Jitsu, La Jolla

This Jiu Jitsu academy is led by Black Belt Professor, Rafael Dallinha, who is a 3rd Degree Black Belt holder from Brazil. He believes that people want to learn martial arts for many reasons. Therefore, the academy created programs for beginners, Mixed Martial Arts fighters, and law enforcement officers. Newcomers are welcome to try the class for free in order to find out if Jiu Jitsu suit their needs.

Being a gentle art of combat, Jiu Jitsu does not only emphasize physical movements. Those who practice Jiu Jitsu also learn to control their state of mind. Just like the Samurai, Jiu Jitsu practitioners need to maintain peace while in distress in order to ensure sharpness and relevance to maintain honorability in battle. This practice will eventually lead to inner peace which will have a positive impact on mental health. Other than inner peace, Jiu Jitsu also benefits the body as it will improve body strength and flexibility. 

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