The History of Judo & Brazilian Jiujitsu
Brazilian Jiu Jitsu began with Mitsuyo Maeda whom Judo's founder Kano Jigoro sent overseas to spread his art to the world. Maeda visited a number of countries giving "jiu-do" demonstrations before arriving in Brazil in 1914.
It is often thought that BJJ is a development of traditional Japanese JuJitsu, not judo. However, Maeda never trained in JuJitsu. He first trained in sumo as a teenager but then changed from sumo to Judo, becoming a student of Kano's Kodokan Judo and achieving a grade of 7th Dan.
Comparison with Judo
To become an Olympic sport, Judo had to become far safer for participants.Hence more dangerous moves were removed, resulting in far less joint locks. In addition the sport of Judo is under pressure to be interesting to watch for spectators. Explosive throws to the floor have thus flourished whilst there has been a gradual decline of the more subtle groundwork techniques.
Not being an Olympic sport, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu has not followed these changes. Thus Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is now is a distinct martial art to Judo. Rather than evolve according to the rules of safe participation and spectacular techniques, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu exponents noticed that the advantages of larger and stronger opponents were largely nullified when taken down to the floor. As such Brazilian Jiu Jitsu gradually increased the emphasis on groundwork in contrast with Judo's emphasis on throws. This has led to greater time dedicated to training on the ground, resulting in enhancement of Judo's groundwork techniques by Brazilian Jiu Jitsu practitioners.
Our Head Coach, Graeme Welsh has practiced BJJ at Mill Hill Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Academy, under Nick Brooks, for many years. It is extremely hard to become a BJJ Black belt, but Graeme achieved this goal on 28 September 2013 and was presented his black belt by Roger Gracie.
Welwyn Garden City (Herts) Judo & BJJ club has several members who also train in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. This training can only benefit a judoka and is encouraged.
MMA Cross Training
It is often said that there are three stages to fight:
1. Striking e.g. Muay Thai or Boxing (if no submission), followed by
2. Grappling e.g. Judo (if no submission), followed by
3. Groundwork. e.g. BJJ
With this in mind, there is an increasing amount of cross-training between the sports of BJJ and Judo, and striking based arts such as Boxing or Muay Thai.