New to Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu? What to expect Q & A
Q: What should I do if I would like to try a Jiu-Jitsu classes, fitness, and/or a private class?
A: Fill out the simple contact form found on our webpage. Someone will get in touch with you soon. You can write to us on the contact form with any questions that you may have. You will find our instructors and members are happy to answer any questions. Most importantly, just take the first step and contact us. It has the potential to start a very rewarding journey and there is no risk or pressure.
Q: What should I do once I arrive?
A: Introduce yourself to the instructor, fill out the participation waiver completely, tell the instructor a little about yourself and your background in athletics and martial arts, if any, and ask questions.
Q: Who can do Jiu-Jitsu?
A: Anyone who is healthy enough for exercise can participate. In your class you will find people from ages 14-50+. Most fundamentals classes include beginners as well as a few more experienced participants who often help new students with the techniques. Both men and women participate in our classes. Our women students can elect to train with other women or with anyone in the classes. Our youth program is for 8-14 year old girls and boys.
Q: What is the cost of training at Renzo Gracie Pittsburgh?
A: We have several different price options that we strongly believe give you the best Value in the area for what we offer. I doubt that we are the lowest price martial arts training in the area. Training in the martial arts is not a commodity. Although price is part of any consideration it makes more sense to know what you are getting before shopping pricing. We have several membership plans based on your experience, how often you want to train, what program you are interested in, and other factors. Visit us and we will discuss more details and options when we know what your goals, experience level, and programs of interest are. Remember that it is an investment in you in the most real sense. It is a time as well as a money investment. We take your time and money seriously. Don’t settle, take your time, do the research and learn about the Renzo Gracie Pittsburgh difference. We offer trail options tailored to different experience levels to help you make an informed decision if what we offer is right for you.
Q: What are your free trial options? What is the intro lesson?
A: For those with at least 6 months experience in Brazilian jiu jitsu we offer a trial week. This is a week for you to attend unlimited classes free of charge and at no obligation. The intro class is a free service we provide to beginners who are interested in our classes. It is a short, “hands on” introduction to some of the principals and techniques of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Intros are done privately or in small groups of other beginners. It is also a chance for prospective students to interact with an instructor and ask questions.
Q: What is Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu?
A: It is a grappling-based martial art that teaches how to control a resisting adversary through the use of leverage, timing and creating situations that utilize strength imbalances. As a sport and activity it is one of the fastest growing worldwide. Mixed martial arts (MMA), of which BJJ is a integral part, is the fastest growing sport in the world in terms of revenues and viewership. Jiu Jitsu and grappling is an integral part of most serious self-defense programs and is used by police and military organizations world-wide.
Q: Will I get hurt in class?
A: Our Fundamentals Program is designed though years of experience to minimize the chances of injuries. Instructors monitor students training constantly and also ensure that the environment is safe. For example very large and athletic people are paired with people of similar stature. There are no strikes in the fundamentals program. As with any contact sport there is some risk.
Q: Do you have women in your school?
A: Yes. We have several women members.
Q: Do I have to be an athlete to do your classes?
A: No! Most people are fit enough to start our classes. You can go at your own pace.
Q: What is a typical class structure?
A: 10-minute warm-up, which is designed to create heat in the muscles and develop basic movement skills from Jiu-Jitsu. 40 minute of instructions and drilling techniques. 10 minute of live positional training.
Q: Do you have showers?
A: Yes, we have two showers.
Q: I’m new in the area, is your school a good place to meet new friends?
A: One of the best things about Jiu-Jitsu is that it brings people together. We cultivate a friendly atmosphere in class and often have events such as informal get-togethers at local bars to watch the UFC, a group trips to New York City, seminars, or going to an MMA event to watch your friends compete.
Q: What is a “gi”?
A: A “gi” is the training uniform used by Judo and traditional Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Unlike some martial arts that use uniforms for dress only, our gis are very functional. They are a training tool that teaches skills. Grips and holds use the gi so it is much heavier and stronger than uniforms used in martial arts like Karate or Tae Kwon Do. In addition to being a teaching tool, the gi is also important for building self-defense skills since in Pittsburgh we often wear jackets when we are out on the street. We also have classes which are no-gi . Ask an instructor how you can get a gi. We sell top quality gis at the academy.
Q: Should I train with the gi or without (no-gi Jiu-Jitsu)?
A: You should do both no matter what your goals are. The gi teaches posture, helps to make your defensive skills more crisp, and builds certain types of physical strengths. These are just some of the benefits. Training without a gi builds speed and sharpens certain offensive skills, just to name a few of the benefits. It is a lot of fun to learn different holds and movements for each discipline as well as seeing where techniques intersect or need to be modified. There are competitions both with and without the gi. Most of the top competitors are champions in both. Most good MMA fighters train both gi and no-gi at different times.
Q: Do the classes teach you how to fight like fighters in the UFC and other MMA events?
A: UFC fighters and most professional MMA fighters spent years training and are full time fighters. Many are also exceptional athletes. Most of the best ones train or started training in a school like Renzo Gracie Pittsburgh. You will immediately be more of an educated fan of MMA by participating our classes. After more time you will learn to use many of the most important skill that top MMA fighters use.
Q: What should I do if I want to compete in mixed martial arts or sport Jiu-Jitsu?
A: Join our school and participate in our classes! UFC champions Frankie Edgar and George St. Pierre are often seen in public classes at Renzo’s in NYC. You should be prepared to dedicate lots of time and work. It is not an overnight process but months and years of training. Anyone who wants to compete can do so at some level if they can dedicate the time and effort. Many of our members do not compete. Some of the most respected Jiu-Jitsu practitioners have never competed.
Q: Will I get in shape and lose weight by doing Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu?
A: Without a doubt, yes! We have had many members loose over 20lbs in a couple of months and change their body composition to one with less fat more muscle. There is no other activity that, in one hour, does as thorough a job of mixing resistance training, endurance/cardio, balance, coordination and flexibility as Brazilian Jiu jitsu. Other benefits are breath control, hand and core strengthening and mind/body connection. Almost all muscles are worked. Metabolism is raised so calories are burned not just in class but also throughout the rest of your week. Our conditioning classes offer an extra boost to get you in shape even faster since we feel physical fitness is so important.