Most BJJ practitioners are aware of the existence of the standard BJJ tournaments and organizations that do work under the classic BJJ sports rules. But if there was one person that continues to bring new innovations to the game of BJJ and introduce new sports rules, then it would have to be Eddie Bravo. One of the newest ideas that Eddie had recently is to introduce the so-called “combat jiu-jitsu”. The combat jiu-jitsu will introduce a novelty in the BJJ matches – read below to find what it’s all about.
Rules of Combat Jiu-Jitsu
The main difference between the classical BJJ matchups under the standard rules and the combat jiu-jitsu match ups comes in the fact that open palm strikes are allowed when the practitioners are on the ground. Now, since BJJ is known as the “gentle art” where no direct strikes are allowed, you might ask yourself what was the main reason as to why Eddie Bravo decided to try to implement striking in BJJ.
And the reasoning behind it is simple and logical – Eddie Bravo was always known as the BJJ master that bridged the gap between the sports of BJJ and MMA. His particular brand of BJJ, known as the 10th planet, is focused on the application of BJJ techniques in a real fight. So, now, with the open palm strikes, it’s Eddie Bravo idea to introduce real-fight principles to BJJ sports events and to help prepare the BJJ practitioners for MMA bouts in the future.
Putting Combat Jiu-Jitsu into practice
So, how did this idea fare? Well, there was an event in combat jiu-jitsu held at the Eddie Bravo Invitational tournament and the grapplers were indeed given permission to use open palm strikes when they were on the ground. The overall reception of these new rules was generally positive as the crowd was cheering with the slaps that the competitors threw at each other. It certainly adds a new element to the BJJ game as you now would have to protect your face and think about getting hit. It makes things that much more complicated in an already very complicated world of traditional BJJ rules – which can be a good thing.
The potential drawbacks
However, it’s important to note that the audience had so much fun that the people in it were laughing hard when they heard the sound of slaps that the grapplers made. Fighting and grappling are serious sports, so should the people that watch them laugh? It’s completely normal to laugh if one of the opponents is taunting the other opponent with a slap to the face (hint: see the history of UFC’s Nick and Nate Diaz’s careers and their patented Stockton Slaps, and the reaction of the audience they inspire.) But if you make the rules about slapping each other faces then the entire sport may end up not being taken seriously by anyone – this is a potential issue that needs to be resolved.
The ruleset of combat jiu-jitsu is far from being finished though – it will still take a long time before Eddie Bravo puts the finishing touches on his new brain-child. For now, only open-palm strikes are allowed on the ground – there are no elbows or direct strikes and the competitors won’t wear gloves either. These rules are subject to change, however, and who knows what else will Eddie Bravo introduce to the new sports variation of combat jiu-jitsu?