Is BJJ good or bad for the brain?

Is BJJ good for your brain, or very bad for it? The answers: yes, and maybe. Although jiu jitsu has big benefits for the brain, I think we should be careful with possible harms surrounding CTE.

5 reasons why BJJ is good for the brain

BJJ, or Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, is a martial art that can have many benefits for the brain. Here are five reasons why:

  1. BJJ requires a high level of focus and concentration, which can help to improve cognitive function and mental sharpness.
  2. BJJ involves a lot of problem-solving and decision-making, as practitioners must constantly adapt to changing situations and think critically about how to achieve a submission.
  3. BJJ can be a great stress-reliever, as the physical exertion and mental focus can help to clear the mind and reduce feelings of anxiety and depression.
  4. BJJ can also help to improve memory and recall, as practitioners must remember techniques and combinations in order to execute them effectively.
  5. BJJ can also be a great way to improve overall physical health, and a healthy body can lead to a healthier brain.

Overall, BJJ can be a great way to improve brain health, by providing both physical and mental benefits.

2 Potential reasons why BJJ is bad for your brain

1. Brain damage (CTE)

BJJ, like any physical activity, carries a small risk of injury, including head injuries. However, when practiced safely and under the guidance of a qualified instructor, the risk of brain damage from BJJ is low, because strikes aren’t allowed.

2. Brain damage from chokes

Many people like myself are concerned that chokes might cause brain damage, even if you tap out before you go unconscious. But what does the research say?

As far as I can find, chokes don’t cause brain damage if you don’t hold them for too long. Most sources suggest that as long as you don’t go out, you’re safe.

However, I’d be careful with this. They didn’t study it enough. So to be safe, I suggest you limit your time in chokes to the absolute minimum. That means you should sometimes tap even if a choke isn’t fully on. Don’t stay there for 30 seconds to see if you can survive – just in case it causes brain damage after all.

Also read: The 15 Life Changing benefits of jiu jitsu

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