Bjj Vs Wrestling: Which One Dominates In A Fight?

Bjj focuses on submissions and controlling an opponent on the ground, while wrestling emphasizes takedowns and controlling an opponent on their feet. Bjj and wrestling are two popular combat sports that have similarities yet stark differences.

Brazilian jiu-jitsu (bjj) is a grappling martial art that emphasizes balance, leverage, and natural body movements to subdue an opponent with submissions and ground control. On the other hand, wrestling is a combat sport that emphasizes takedowns, throws, and controlling an opponent’s movement on their feet while standing.

Both bjj and wrestling have produced top-tier athletes in mixed martial arts (mma), which is why many mma fighters learn these fundamental martial arts first before delving into other disciplines. However, the differences in focus when it comes to technique and strategy make them separate entities. In this article, we’ll dive into what sets bjj and wrestling apart and the benefits of each.

Bjj Vs Wrestling: Which One Dominates In A Fight?


Understanding Bjj And Wrestling

Bjj Vs Wrestling: Which One Dominates In A Fight?

When it comes to self-defense, bjj and wrestling are two popular martial arts that people turn to. Both are combat sports with a focus on grappling and ground fighting. However, there are some substantial differences between these two martial arts that people need to understand.

In this post, we’ll dive deep into the origins, history, and philosophy of bjj and wrestling. We’ll also explore how their techniques differ.

Origins, History, And Philosophy Of Bjj And Wrestling


  • Bjj, also known as brazilian jiu-jitsu, originated from kodokan judo in japan and was brought to brazil in the early 20th century.
  • The gracie family is largely responsible for developing bjj and introducing it to the world.
  • Bjj is based on leveraging your body and position to overcome a stronger opponent by using joint locks, chokes, and submissions.
  • The philosophy behind bjj is that a smaller, weaker person can defend themselves against a larger, stronger opponent through skill and technique.


  • Wrestling has been around for centuries and was a popular sport in ancient greece, where it was even an olympic sport.
  • Wrestling is divided into two styles: Greco-roman wrestling, where athletes cannot use their legs or trip their opponent, and freestyle wrestling, where athletes can use their legs and trip their opponent.
  • Wrestling is based on takedowns and controlling your opponent through body positioning.
  • The philosophy behind wrestling is that an individual can control another person’s body through leverage and strength.
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Comparison Of Bjj And Wrestling Techniques


  • Bjj has a greater emphasis on ground fighting and submissions than wrestling does.
  • Practitioners learn how to take the fight to the ground by pulling their opponent into their guard, a position where they use their legs and hips to maintain control.
  • Bjj focuses heavily on sweeps, which are techniques that allow you to reverse the positions between yourself and your opponent.
  • Submissions are also a core part of bjj, with practitioners learning how to apply joint locks, chokes, and other techniques to force their opponent to submit.


  • Wrestling places greater emphasis on takedowns and throws than bjj.
  • The objective is to take the opponent to the ground and pin them to score points.
  • Wrestling techniques also focus on controlling your opponent through various positions, such as the front headlock and the cradle.
  • While submissions exist in wrestling, they are far less common than in bjj, with wrestlers typically relying on pins to win matches.

Both bjj and wrestling have their unique strengths and weaknesses. Understanding these martial arts’ differences is crucial when it comes to deciding which one might be the best fit for your needs. Whichever one you ultimately choose, it’s essential to remember that consistent practice and dedication are key to mastering any martial art.

Differences Between Bjj And Wrestling

When it comes to combat sports, brazilian jiu-jitsu (bjj) and wrestling are two of the most popular martial arts practiced worldwide. While both styles have certain similarities, there are also significant differences that set them apart. In this blog post, we will examine the differences between bjj and wrestling and evaluate their strengths and weaknesses in the context of a fight.

Types Of Fights Each Style Is Best Suited For

Bjj and wrestling are two very different martial arts that excel in specific types of fights. Here are the types of fights each style is best suited for:


  • Ground grappling: Bjj is the undisputed king of ground grappling techniques. It teaches practitioners how to control an opponent on the ground, escape submissions, and execute various submissions.
  • Defensive fighting: Bjj teaches practitioners how to defend themselves against larger and stronger opponents. The martial art relies on leverage, technique and precision over brute strength and power.


  • Takedowns: Wrestling is highly effective in takedown situations. It teaches practitioners how to use various grappling techniques to take an opponent to the ground and control them from top position.
  • Offensive fighting: Wrestling is known for its aggressive style and is well-suited for those who want to be on the offensive during a fight. It focuses on pinning and controlling opponents from the top position.

Differences In Approach And Strategy For Each Style

Bjj and wrestling have different approaches to fighting, and each martial art has a distinct strategy. Here are the key differences in approach and strategy for each style:


  • Technique over strength: Bjj relies on technique and leverage to overcome strength and size advantages.
  • Guard play: Bjj places a strong emphasis on guard play positions, which involve playing from the bottom.
  • Submissions: Bjj focuses on submissions, with a wide variety of chokes and joint locks that can be used depending on the situation.


  • Strength and power: Wrestling is all about strength and power, and practitioners rely on these attributes to control their opponents.
  • Top position control: Wrestling places a strong emphasis on top position control, which involves taking and maintaining a dominant position on top of an opponent.
  • Pinning: Wrestling focuses on pinning techniques, with practitioners looking to keep their opponent immobilized on the ground.
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Strengths And Weaknesses Of Bjj And Wrestling

Bjj and wrestling have their own unique strengths and weaknesses when it comes to fighting. Here is a breakdown of each martial art’s strengths and weaknesses:


  • Strengths: Excellent ground grappling techniques, strong emphasis on submissions, effective in defensive situations, technique over strength and size.
  • Weaknesses: Can struggle with takedowns and positioning, less effective in stand-up fighting, more challenging to learn than wrestling.


  • Strengths: Highly effective in takedown situations, strong emphasis on top position control, well-suited for offensive fighting, good for wrestlers of all sizes and body types.
  • Weaknesses: Less effective on the ground, fewer submission techniques available, can be too aggressive and lead to defensive vulnerabilities.

Both bjj and wrestling have unique strengths and weaknesses when it comes to fighting. Bjj excels on the ground with its grappling techniques and submissions, while wrestling is highly effective in takedown situations and controlling opponents from top position. Ultimately, the choice between the two styles comes down to personal preference, as well as the specific needs of a fighter and their goals in combat sports.


Bjj Vs Wrestling: Which Is More Effective In A Street Fight?

Bjj vs wrestling: which is more effective in a street fight?

Fights can break out at any time, and when they do, you need to be prepared. Two martial arts that often come up in discussions about practical self-defense are brazilian jiu-jitsu (bjj) and wrestling. Let’s take a comprehensive look at each style and see how they stack up against each other in a real-life situation.

Comparison Of Bjj And Wrestling Techniques For Self-Defense Purposes

Bjj is a martial art that focuses on grappling and submission techniques, which means it is intended for fighting on the ground. On the other hand, wrestling is all about takedowns, pins, and controlling your opponent on the mat or ground.

Advantages And Disadvantages Of Each Style In Real-Life Situations

Bjj advantages:

  • Focuses heavily on ground techniques, which can be necessary in real-life situations.
  • A vast range of submissions and holds that can end a fight quickly.
  • Bjj practitioners usually experience higher combat efficiency levels.

Bjj disadvantages:

  • Bjj often neglects takedown techniques, which could lead to trouble if the fight remains standing.
  • Success in bjj is heavily reliant on strength and size.

Wrestling advantages:

  • Wrestlers have an excellent understanding of leverage and balance.
  • Excellent takedown techniques and tremendous mat control skills.
  • Almost all fighting ranges are studied in wrestling, including stand-up fighting, clinching, and ground fighting.

Wrestling disadvantages:

  • Wrestlers may have deficiencies in submission, grappling, and striking techniques.
  • It exhausts the body more than bjj.

Choosing The Right Fighting Style For Self-Defense

Bjj Vs Wrestling: Which One Dominates In A Fight?

Fighting styles have been around for centuries, from the ancient art of kung fu to the medieval art of sword-fighting, but with so many options available, which one should you choose for self-defense? Bjj and wrestling are two popular fighting styles that often come to mind when people want to learn self-defense techniques.

In this post, we’ll look at the factors to consider when selecting the right fighting style and explore the compatibility of bjj and wrestling with different body types and physical abilities.

Factors To Consider In Selecting The Right Fighting Style:

  • Intended use: Do you want to learn a fighting style for self-defense or for competition purposes? Different styles are suitable for different purposes.
  • Level of athleticism: Some fighting styles require flexibility and agility, whereas others emphasize brute strength and power. Choose a style that aligns with your physical abilities.
  • Culture and philosophy: Every fighting style has its unique culture and philosophy. Consider your personal beliefs and values before selecting a style that resonates with you.
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Compatibility Of Each Style With Different Body Types And Physical Abilities:


  • Suits those who prefer ground-based fighting techniques.
  • It’s suitable for different body types and physical abilities, as it emphasizes the use of leverage and technique over brute strength.
  • It requires a lot of flexibility and agility, making it more challenging for those with limited mobility.
  • It can be an excellent way for women to learn self-defense techniques, as it allows them to use their body weight to overpower their opponent.


  • Suits those who prefer standing fighting techniques.
  • It requires a lot of upper body strength and explosive power, making it more challenging for those with limited strength.
  • It can be an excellent way to learn self-defense techniques for those who prefer a straightforward, no-frills approach.
  • It can be beneficial for people who want to improve their overall physical fitness.

Availability Of Training Programs And Resources For Each Style:


  • Bjj schools and training programs can be found in most cities around the world, making it easily accessible.
  • There are plenty of resources available, such as instructional videos and online tutorials, making it easy to learn at your own pace.
  • It can be expensive to learn, as it often requires expensive equipment and training fees.


  • Wrestling is typically taught in schools and universities, making it more accessible for students.
  • There are fewer resources available online, making it more challenging to learn on your own.
  • Unlike bjj, wrestling requires minimal equipment costs.

When selecting the right fighting style for self-defense, consider the intended use, your physical abilities, and personal beliefs. Both bjj and wrestling have their unique advantages and challenges, so take the time to research and explore both before deciding. Remember, it’s not about learning the most complex techniques; it’s about finding a style that works for you and that you can become proficient in to protect yourself if ever needed.

[FAQs] Frequently Asked Questions 

Can I Train Both Bjj And Wrestling At The Same Time?

Absolutely! Many athletes train both bjj and wrestling to become well-rounded and improve their skills. Cross-training in both arts can help you improve your ground game, throws, and takedowns. However, consult with your coach to ensure you are prepared for the demands of training both disciplines at the same time.

Is Wrestling Harder Than Bjj?

Both bjj and wrestling require physical and mental toughness, but the training and techniques involved in each art are different. Wrestling demands more explosive strength and conditioning, while bjj relies on controlled movements and submissions. It’s ultimately up to personal preference in which art is “harder”.

Which Discipline Is Better For Self-Defense?

Both bjj and wrestling have practical applications for self-defense situations. Bjj is effective in close-range grappling, while wrestling can help with takedowns and controlling an attacker’s movements. Ultimately, the most important thing in self-defense situations is one’s ability to stay calm and make quick, decisive actions.

Can Bjj Help Me In Mma Fights?

Absolutely. Bjj is a popular martial art in the world of mma and is essential for grappling and submission techniques. Many fighters train in bjj to develop a well-rounded skillset and compete at high levels.

Why Is Wrestling Important In Bjj?

Wrestling is important in bjj because it focuses on takedowns and controlling your opponent’s movements on the ground. Having a solid foundation in wrestling can help with developing a strong top game in bjj and prevent opponents from escaping from the bottom.


After analyzing the differences and similarities between bjj and wrestling, it’s evident that both have their unique strengths and weaknesses. Bjj’s emphasis on submissions and ground control makes it a valuable tool for self-defense and martial arts competitions. On the other hand, wrestling’s focus on takedowns, pinning, and controlling opponents’ movement makes it useful in combat sports and physical confrontations.

Ultimately, the choice between bjj and wrestling depends on individual goals, interests, and preferences. It’s important to note that mastering either discipline requires consistent practice, dedication, and discipline. Whichever martial art you choose, keep in mind that knowledge is power, and the key to success lies in endless learning and continuous improvement.

With the right mindset, attitude, and guidance, you can become a proficient bjj practitioner or wrestler and accomplish your goals.


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