In Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ), practitioners progress through a ranking system represented by colored belts. The belts indicate the individual's level of skill, knowledge, and experience in the art. The adult belt colors typically follow a specific order:

  1. White Belt: This is the starting point for all BJJ practitioners. It signifies a beginner level with little to no experience in the art.

  2. Blue Belt: The blue belt represents a more advanced level. At this stage, practitioners start to develop a more extensive knowledge of BJJ techniques and concepts. They begin to understand the strategies and principles behind the art.

  3. Purple Belt: Purple belts are considered experienced practitioners. They have a solid understanding of BJJ fundamentals and can start to develop their personal style. Purple belts often focus on refining their techniques and expanding their repertoire.

  4. Brown Belt: Brown belts are highly skilled practitioners. They have a deep understanding of BJJ, and their proficiency in techniques is evident. At this level, practitioners often begin teaching and sharing their knowledge with others.

  5. Black Belt: The black belt is the highest rank in BJJ. It signifies a high level of technical proficiency, teaching ability, and understanding of the art. However, even within the black belt, there are degrees, with higher degrees indicating further mastery. For example, a first-degree black belt (black belt with one stripe) may be considered less experienced than a fourth-degree black belt.

It's important to note that the journey through the belts is not only about physical skill but also about personal growth, discipline, and a deepening understanding of the philosophy behind Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Belt promotions are usually based on a combination of technical proficiency, time spent training, competition performance, and contributions to the BJJ community. Each academy or association may have slightly different criteria for belt promotions, but the general principles remain consistent across the BJJ community.

January 28, 2024 — Maximilian Alkofer

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