What Values Does Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Teach? (Philosophy of BJJ)

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is a popular combat sport and martial arts that many people take up for lots of different reasons. However, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu teaches you more than just how to fight and how to ground your opponent. 

There are a lot of important lessons to learn when you take up Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and it can also teach you some important values that you can apply to other aspects of your life.

What Values Does Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Teach?

This is why some people take up Brazilian Jiu Jitsu not just for physical fitness, but for personal growth too! 

But what values does Brazilian Jiu Jitsu teach to you? 

Here, we are going to find out what Brazilian Jiu Jitsu can teach you beyond headlocks and sweeps so you can find out more about the benefits this martial art has to offer. 

So, let’s get started! 

Discipline and Responsibility 

One of the main lessons learnt through Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is discipline. 

Like with all martial arts, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu requires a lot of discipline because it involves a lot of hardcore training, effort, and skill. This means that students need to have the discipline to keep up with their sparring practices and learn to commit to the art. 

Not only that, but students have to take responsibility for their own growth. Without the discipline to keep practising, learning and growing, they cannot progress through the belt ranks. 

Those who do not take responsibility for their own growth quickly learn that they have no one else to blame but themselves for not committing to their routine and thus they have to find the discipline within themselves to push forward. 

These are some very important values that someone learning Brazilian Jiu Jitsu can learn and apply to other areas in their life.

Just like with Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, you cannot progress and learn with your other hobbies or work unless you dedicate the time to it.

So, people can take away the values of discipline and responsibility from Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and apply it to other areas of their lives including work, crafts, cooking, relationships, and fitness. 


Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is all about taking down your opponent but there’s more people involved than just the two people sparring. You will have a coach, training partners, and teachers who all want to help you succeed in the sport. 

This means that you have to respect those around you and listen to their advice. Respect allows each student to take on board the encouragement and advice of others, applying it to their practice and reap the results. 

Not only that but learning to respect your fellow students and partners helps each student feel like they are a part of a team and in turn, they can provide encouragement and support. 

However, the most important part of learning this value comes with respecting your opponent. 

In some sports, opposing teams or players can often become disrespectful and this can lead to foul play, poor sportsmanship, and overall ruin the game.

This is also true in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu as opponents who don’t respect each other or see each other as equal can lead to aggression.

This is why so many teachers and coaches put so much emphasis on respecting your opponent and why they make opponents bow and shake hands before and after some sessions. (You might also want to check out What Does Hang Ten Mean?)

So, learning to respect others is an important value to learn in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu that students can take away and apply to other relationships they will have in the future including with partners, teammates, and teachers. 

Patience and Persistence 

Learning Brazilian Jiu Jitsu takes a lot of work and it’s very easy to just give up early on when you aren’t progressing as quickly as you want to be.

However, teachers and fellow students will encourage students to stick with the sport and persist in their training with the promise that they will eventually see the fruits of their labor. 

This instills students with values of persistence and patience – proving that hard work and frequent practice will pay off eventually.

A student can then take these values and apply them to other goals they may have including reaching promotions, high grades, and other sports and hobbies.

This can help the student reach success in other fields as long as they stick to the values they have learned through their time practicing Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. 

Humility and Self Awareness

One of the greatest parts of learning Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is the confidence it inspires. This confidence can lead to values of self-awareness, allowing a student to become more aware of the skills they have and how strong they actually are.

This self awareness can allow students to apply their confidence in other aspects of their life and encourage them to be proud of what they can achieve. 

However, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu also helps instill values of humility as well. Although these two values seem to be very different, they actually go well side by side. 

While a student learns about their own strengths, they also become aware of their weaknesses and remind themselves that they are always capable of growth and improvement. 

It also ties in neatly with the value of respect as students can learn  that other people have their own strengths which makes them just as strong and skillful as themselves.

This value of humility prevents students from becoming too cocky or egotistical, and helps them learn to respect others as well as themselves. 


So, clearly, learning Brazilian Jiu Jitsu allows you to learn more than just how to ground your opponent. This martial art is also a great way for you to learn core values and lessons that can prepare you for challenges elsewhere in your life. 

So, by taking up Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, you can learn values including respect, humility, patience, and discipline. These important values can help you out in other areas of your life so you can really benefit from learning Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.

Christopher Anderson
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