More and more debate is occurring in the world of brazilian jiu-jitsu divided between 2 different training philosophies:
Do you train “old school” self defense / basics centered jiu-jitsu?
Clinch to takedown, pass the guard, progress to mount and choke / straight armbar?
The brand of jiu-jitsu as taught by the Grandmaster Helio Gracie and his family in Brazil?
Or are you a fan of the incredible innovations in sports bjj?
“Do you even berimbolo bro?”
Bjj 2.0 has evolved largely to the top competitiors like Keenan Cornelius, the phenominal Mendes brothers and the masters of berimbolo Miyao brothers.
50/50 guard, lapel guard, reverse De la Riva guard, worm guard are all part of the new Bjj 2.0.
It seems that every new major championship a new competitive strategy has been unveiled with a crazy name to go along with it (“Mantis Guard anyone?”).
On the side of the mat watching rolling, I was debating this topic with a brown belt who is an active competitior.
There is no denying that if you wish to compete in an IBJJF tournament rule set, you had better be educated in this set of techniques!
Jiu-jitsu continues to evolve and those who refuse to accept and evolve along with it, will become like the dinosaurs…extinct!
Now on the other side of the debate is the old school / “vale tudo” (Portuguese translation: anything goes) philosophy that reminds us that brazilian jiu-jitsu is first and foremost a fighting art.
The litmus test for a technique is “Can you realistically perform that technique if your opponent can strike you?”
Being the Bjj coach at a MMA Gym with active fighters, I found that they are utterly pragmatic when it comes to their bjj:
“If I do this move will my opponent punch me in the face?”
The debate between the new school brown belt and I (“old school all the way!”) went back and forth.
But in the end we both agreed on the same thing: That our jiu-jitsu was centered on positions that were relatively the same between gi / no-gi / MMA.
Of course, you make adjustments for grips and position, but a Kimura is a Kimura which ever rule set that you are fighting.
There are some positions (ex. Spider Guard) that you know that you can do only in the gi.
The “fundamentals” of base, posture, balance, pressure remain the same regardless of which style of bjj you prefer.
Why do you train bjj?
Are you old school or new school bjj?