No-Gi Jiu Jitsu St. Louis, MO
No-Gi Jiu Jitsu in St. Louis, MO. While traditionally Brazilian jiu jitsu has been trained and contested by martial artists wearing a kimono-and-pants uniform known as a gi, over the past few years interest in jiu jitsu played in a different uniform has grown exponentially. The rise of mixed martial arts, a desire for a more “functional” form of BJJ for self-defense, and increased cross-training with other combat sports has heightened the need for a form of Brazilian jiu jitsu that can be more applicable to these situations. Thus, no-gi Brazilian jiu jitsu was created, and has enjoyed wide popularity, with multiple competitions and events created entirely for grapplers who choose not to wear the traditional gi when playing Brazilian jiu jitsu.
At Gracie Barra O’Fallon, our instructors recognize the value of Brazilian jiu jitsu played both in a gi and in more athletic attire. While many of our jiu jitsu classes in St. Charles County are conducted in the traditional gi, we offer no-gi jiu jitsu for teens and adults of all levels every week. Check out our schedule or contact us by calling 636-544-3655 or online for more information on our full offering of Brazilian jiu jitsu classes, including no-gi jiu jitsu, for all ages and levels.
What Makes No-Gi Jiu Jitsu Different?
For much of its existence, Brazilian jiu jitsu has been played by martial artists wearing a loose jacket and pants, the jacket being held closed by a belt whose color denotes its wearer’s rank. This practice can be traced back to BJJ’s roots in judo: that sport has always been practiced in a gi, which is traditionally white although international competitions now mandate that one person in each match must wear a blue gi. The use of a gi also influenced much of BJJ’s style as a martial art, with many takedowns or sweeps made possible using leverage one gained from holding the gi.
While jiu jitsu in more standard athletic attire has long been practiced in less formal circumstances, it has grown in popularity over the last 20 years. Part of this was because of the creation of international no-gi Brazilian jiu jitsu tournaments like the ADCC World Championships and the addition of a no-gi division at the IBJJF Mundials, but arguably the bigger catalyst for its development has been the creation and massive expansion of mixed martial arts. Early MMA events had no restrictions on what clothes fighters could wear — indeed, a Gracie family member won the first two UFC tournaments wearing a gi — but the adoption of the Unified Rules of MMA meant that the only permitted clothing for male fighters is shorts or trunks. Thus, many more Brazilian jiu jitsu players who also were interested in MMA turned to no-gi grappling, which is done in shorts, a compression top known as a rashguard, and occasionally compression shorts or tights called spats.
The difference in attire is not the only thing that sets no-gi Brazilian jiu jitsu apart from its older brother, either. Several submissions common in competitive gi BJJ, like the lapel choke, loop choke, and Ezequiel choke, are difficult or impossible to achieve in no-gi BJJ. This is because these chokes require the use of the gi top to provide leverage. To compensate for the loss of these submissions, most no-gi competitions allow competitors to achieve submissions using heel-hooks or kneebars, both of which are illegal in gi Brazilian jiu jitsu.
Who Benefits From No-Gi Jiu Jitsu?
No-gi jiu jitsu is an exceptional way to not only improve your skills as a Brazilian jiu jitsu player, but also to improve your skills for other combat sports or martial arts disciplines. A large number of athletes can benefit from no-gi Brazilian jiu jitsu, such as:
- MMA fighters: since as mentioned before MMA is fought in attire similar to that of no-gi jiu jitsu, learning submissions, ground control, and takedown defense without a gi is incredibly beneficial if, for instance, you are more of a kickboxer or pure striker transitioning into the cage.
- Amateur wrestlers: much of no-gi BJJ is based around takedowns and sprawl defense against them, which is inherently useful for high school or collegiate wrestlers. In addition, many high-level wrestlers have transitioned to MMA with great success following the end of their amateur careers, and beginning your Brazilian jiu jitsu journey early is an excellent base for this move.
- BJJ players interested in entering competitions: many Brazilian jiu jitsu tournaments, both locally, nationally, and internationally, either have both gi and no-gi divisions or are strictly no-gi.
- You: not only is Brazlian jiu jitsu a great way to get fit and meet new people, no-gi jiu jitsu is an excellent method of self-defense.
Learn No-Gi Jiu Jitsu In Greater St. Louis | Gracie Barra O’Fallon
When you come to Gracie Barra O’Fallon to learn Brazilian jiu jitsu, you can expect to not only practice no-gi jiu jitsu in a welcoming and enjoyable environment, but also to be taught skills by a no-gi jiu jitsu expert. Our lead instructor, Mike Buckels, is a BJJ black belt under Marcio Feitosa, a former winner of the ADCC World Championship, considered by many to be the world’s premier no-gi jiu jitsu competition. He and the rest of our teaching staff regularly compete — and succeed — in no-gi events and understand what it takes to be a successful grappler at any level. Our teaching staff enjoys sharing their knowledge with Gracie Barra students, whether they are first-timers or experienced grapplers, and helping them improve both on the mat and off of it.
Gracie Barra O’Fallon offers no-gi jiu jitsu classes for both teens and adults. They are open to all, regardless of your belt level or experience, and are conveniently scheduled to fit around your busy life and any other sporting commitments you might have. Call us today at 636-544-3655for more information, or contact us online to find out about how you can schedule a free no-gi jiu jitsu class to see for yourself how Gracie Barra O’Fallon is St. Louis’ premier no-gi jiu jitsu gym.