10 Tips For Competing BJJ Tournaments Out Of The Country

10 Tips For Competing BJJ Tournaments Out Of The Country

Being an international sport, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) is played all over the world. As we all know, BJJ is a submission grappling combat sport and its tournaments are organized by many international organizations including International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation (IBJJF). Upon reaching the brown and black belt levels, BJJ practitioners are allowed to compete in BJJ tournaments out of the country.

There are many BJJ tournaments in which BJJ practitioners compete, for example, The International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation Europeans, Abu Dhabi Combat Club (ADCC), UAEJJF Grand Slam, IBJJF Pan American Championship, and many more.

Being either brown or black belt, fighters are completely aware of all the competition rules for the tournament. They even know how to perform if they are heading out of the country for BJJ. The tips given below work as a guideline for BJJ practitioners because traveling out of the country can be very different and hectic than assumed. A BJJ practitioner has to become diligent and active at all times. A change in environment and weather can affect the fighter’s game.

For BJJ athletes, competing out of the country also opens many spectrum of opportunities.

1. 10 Tips for Competing BJJ Tournament Out of Country

After gaining victory in the domestic and national tournaments, a fighter becomes eligible and well-prepared for International BJJ competitions.

1.1. Personal Hygiene

  • Being in a contact sport, keeping hygiene is very important in BJJ.
  • Better hygiene keeps you and your opponent healthy and avoids skin infections.
  • When a fighter is competing in a BJJ tournament out of the country, he needs to take care of his personal hygiene while traveling.
  • A fighter needs to catch his flight early so that if his seat is not clean enough, he could ask for a change of seat.
  • The fighter must make sure that his fingernails and toenails are clean at all times as they can become places for breeding bacteria and harm the opponent.
  • When traveling out of the country many new factors are added which can significantly affect the BJJ performance. For example, training on new mats or fighting with different players.
  • A fighter must wear rash guards and compression shorts under his BJJ Gi.
  • Not taking care of hygiene sometimes causes skin diseases like ringworm or staph and can cast out the fighter from the competition.

1.2. Stay Focused and Have a Game Plan

  • A BJJ practitioner is a very focused player. BJJ taught him all the techniques necessary for the fight as well as instructed him on how to stay calm under stressful situations and identify his opponents moves.
  • Never compete in a BJJ Tournament without a game plan.
  • Having a game plan provides the BJJ competitor with a strategy upon which he can work.
  • Having a game plan beforehand does not let the fighter lose focus rather it makes him more alert and vigilant.
  • It allows you to apply your move prior to your opponent’s execution.
  • Fighting in a new place for the very first time makes a fighter excited as well as nervous. A game plan will ease the feelings of strangeness by letting the fighter rely on something of his own.

1.3. Warm-Up Before the Fight

  • Before the start of a BJJ fight, warming-up for a fighter is very important.
  • Warming up before a BJJ tournament out of the country calms the mind of the fighter and allows him to execute his game plan effectively.
  • A fighter must keep his senses relaxed at all times because jinxing the fight will result in nothing positive.
  • The warm-up before the BJJ fight must not be too tiring because a strenuous warm-up will exhaust the BJJ practitioner and eventually affect his BJJ game.

1.4. Invest in Noise-Canceling Headphones

  • Mostly while traveling, a BJJ practitioner suffers a lot due to noise pollution.
  • This can drastically affect his functioning during the BJJ tournament.
  • To avoid it, it is good to buy noise-canceling headphones.
  • It will keep the fighters safe from the head and ear pain.

1.5. Neck Pillow

  • Neck pillow is also very important for a BJJ practitioner who is competing out of the country.
  • During long flights, a fighter’s neck can suffer from strain.
  • A neck pillow will help to cancel any chance of strain and will keep the fighter fit for his fight.
  • It not only protects the neck but also keeps the spine healthy.
  • A human neck consists of many delicate bones. Many reasons can cause problems in these bones, for example, unrest during travel.
  • A neck pillow ensures that the fighter’s neck remains safe and sound. This will eventually help him to remain fit for the effective execution of his techniques during a BJJ tournament.

1.6. Take Care of Your Diet While being Abroad

  • Many BJJ practitioners do not take care of their diet when they are out of the country for a BJJ tournament.
  • Apart from the warm-up exercises, diet is the second most important thing which provides energy to the fighters for their BJJ game.
  • Carbs and proteins must be part of a fighter’s diet.
  • Even a small change in your diet can affect your game. So even if you are competing in a BJJ tournament out of the country, you must not ignore your dietary supplements or engage too much in trying new cuisines in a foreign country.

1.7. Learn Basic Phrases in Portuguese

  • During a BJJ tournament, the referee speaks only Portuguese.
  • It is better to learn some phrases in Portuguese so that when the referee says something to you, you can understand his words.
  • For a BJJ practitioner in a new country, asking for basic things and directions can be very difficult. Learning basic Portuguese can help a fighter communicate with other fighters easily.
  • A fighter can watch videos in Portuguese to learn it. It will not only help in understanding what the referee is saying during the match but will also help to communicate with other fighters when you are new in a country.

1.8. Keep an Extra Pair of Gear

  • When a fighter competes in a BJJ tournament out of the country, he must keep an extra pair of almost everything with him.
  • Fighting a BJJ match in a foreign country is very different from fighting a match within one’s own country.
  • Keeping an extra pair of gear helps in case of any mishap. For example, sometimes any defect occurs in the Gi or it is not appropriate according to the rules of the gear.
  • Having extra BJJ gear even saves the fighter from buying expensive stuff.

1.9. Be Early

  • A BJJ practitioner should never arrive at the last minute.
  • He must be there at least 90 minutes before the advent of his fight.
  • Being early cancels all the chances of rushing to wear Gi or not having a proper warm-up session.
  • It will also help you to warm-up on time.

1.10. Rest Properly

  • A fighter must have proper rest before his fight.
  • It helps to relax all the nerves and muscles.
  • Proper rest ensures that the fighter’s muscles are neither tired nor strained.
  • The fighter may even suffer from jet lag due to the long flight. Proper rest will eliminate any chance of that tiredness and will make the fighter ready for his BJJ tournament.

2. FAQs

2.1. What are Some of the Famous BJJ Tournaments?

Some of the famous BJJ Tournaments are:

  • The International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation (IBJJF)
  • The Abu Dhabi Combat Club (ADCC)
  • UAEJJF - Abu Dhabi Grand Slam (ADGS)
  • UAEJJF Abu Dhabi World Pro Jiu-Jitsu Cup

2.2. Which Belts Go Out of the Country for BJJ Tournaments?

Brown and Black Belts go out of the country for different BJJ tournaments. The belts below them, fight in-house tournaments mostly.

3. Conclusion

IBJJF conducts many BJJ tournaments all across the globe. Many Brown and Black Belts take part in these tournaments and gain victory. When traveling out of the country, a BJJ practitioner has to take care of many things. For example, he has to take care of his own hygiene. During traveling. Although a fighter is well aware of how diet affects him, still he needs to pay attention to his carbs and protein intake in a foreign country.

Photo credit: @ajptour

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