Actor Henry Cavill loves practicing Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) and for the images he shares, we can see his dedication to training with athlete champion and teacher Roger Gracie in London.
Henry recently announced that he has earned another degree in his white belt, so we decided to bring in this text what are the steps for practitioners of this martial art, from the beginner level to the highest graduation.
We have already talked a little bit about the history of Jiu-Jitsu, and we tell that it originated from judo and specially perfected by the Gracie family, hence the fact that the system of tracks in both sports have some similarity.
To explain this tradition there is a legend that a novice in the martial arts – bothered by the fact that his uniform does not “stand” – provided a white band of ordinary fabric, to tie at the waist and thus to train. He wore the same fabric for several years without swapping, which made the band ‘grimy’, almost black.
When it comes to jiu-jitsu, there are two paths when it comes to the order of the tracks: the sequence of who starts martial art in childhood * up to the age of 16, and the sequence for those who start into adulthood.
* The IBJJF (International Brazilian Jiu-jitsu Federation) recommends that a child start in Jiu-Jitsu from 4 years of age.
Order of Tracks and Length of Stay:
» White: initial band with a minimum of one year
» Gray: graduates from 4 to 15 years of age
» Yellow: graduates from 7 to 15 years of age
» Orange: graduates from 10 to 15 years of age
» Green: graduates from 13 to 15 years of age
From the age of 16, the practically starts in the white band but to pass graduation, needs to reach four ‘degrees’ in each band. So even the brown band are five levels, (the smooth range plus four degrees), being the responsibility of each teacher, evaluate and graduate the student.
» Blue: varies depending on the athlete’s performance, usually stays between one year and a half to two years to reach the four degrees
» Purple: varies depending on the performance of the athlete, usually stays between one year and a half to two years to reach the four degrees
» Brown: varies depending on the performance of the athlete, usually stays between a year and a half to reach the four degrees
» The Black band is divided between the flat and six degrees, and the graduation criterion here is no longer the teacher but determined by the IBJJF.
Another point that changes, is that the graduation periods from here are fixed.
» Red and Black – Master: represents the 7th of the Preta band, the practitioners can graduate in this range from the age of 50.
» Red and White: represents the 8º degree of the black belt, the practitioners can graduate in this range from the 57 years of age.
» Red (Grand Master): corresponds to the 9th and 10th degrees of the black belt.
In the 9th, practitioners can graduate from the age of 67, and the 10th is dedicated only to Jiu-Jitsu patrons (Carlos Gracie, Gastão Gracie, Hélio Gracie, Jorge Gracie and Oswaldo Gracie).
What does not change is the code of conduct. All Jiu-Jitsu practitioners must have discipline, honor, dedication, and respect: for ‘soft art’ (and the legacy it has built over time), teacher, mat, training partners, and its range and the evolution and responsibility it represents.
The teachings of Jiu-Jitsu are beneficial to all areas of life. As in a chess game where opponents create a strategy and make their moves calmly, with attention, focus, the athlete has to strengthen the defense and attack with conscience, executing the movements with perfection.
Fights are a game of intelligence, balance and strength, (where the latter is not the main quality), where controlling the mind is the essential.
With this solid base of values, we realize that the meaning of each color fits very well with the philosophy of struggle.
The white color symbolizes the purity of the student in the face of the unknown, the clean mind to absorb the learning and inner peace to face the challenges.
In gray color the first steps have already been given and the track begins to ‘fill’ according to legend.
The yellow remits the sunlight, a daily rebirth with new skills.
As it is the sun that after the hours of dawn has its light stronger, in the orange tonality the practitioner must understand that will be more and more demanded with the passage of time.
The green tonality symbolizes the expanding nature, a seed that must be taken care of. The student already mastered basic movements and is ready to study more elaborate tactics for their “survival”.
Blue is the color of the sky, the direction of evolution and growth. Here is the certainty that one is on the right track and the athlete should follow with wisdom and humility. It can mean the most demanding level among all grades, requiring perseverance and resilience.
From the blend of red and blue we have Purple, a transition phase with solid knowledge where the student is considered a black belt “under construction”, as long as he maintains humility, resilience and wisdom.
Brown symbolizes the solidity of the earth, the “strong as a rock”! A firm foundation with knowledge that will never be lost.
Black symbolizes the warrior who never gave up and knew how to face challenges while maintaining values and love of art. From here the graduate can convey his knowledge as a teacher, and build his legacy.
And finally red is a pure, warm, primary color that represents life, motivation, and relentless passion for art.
We totally want to follow Henry’s “advice” and start practicing Jiu-Jitsu now:
“[…] You really have to try Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu! It’s a game changer and very very enjoyable.“
A fan asked for advices and he replied: “Seriously, just go try it. The right professor won’t make it hard on you when you start out. It’s all about technique! 🙂“
Currently Henry Cavill is two degrees out of his white belt.
So if you already practice or are excited to begin Jiu-Jitsu training, tell us, and keep following the Portal Henry Cavill to learn all about Henry and his BJJ training.