Ground Fighting

BJJ is strongly differentiated by its greater emphasis on groundwork. This is due to both its radically different point-scoring system, and the absence of most of the judo rules that cause the competitors to have to recommence in a standing position. This has led to greater time dedicated to training on the ground, resulting in enhancement of judo's groundwork techniques by BJJ practitioners.

However, there are also many techniques that are allegedly created by BJJ, though they already existed in Kodokan judo. This misconception is often the result of incorrect assumptions by BJJ practitioners who simply assume that the techniques they learned in BJJ classes originated in BJJ, and it is also due in some instances to BJJ practitioners genuinely rediscovering techniques that they did not know already existed in judo, such as the Gogoplata.

Along with BJJ's great strengths on the ground comes its relative weakness with standing techniques. There is an increasing amount of cross-training between the two sports.

The gi

While the judogi (judo uniform) is regulated and inspected by sanctioning bodies so as to maintain a necessary amount of room between the arm and the sleeve for gripping, and also between the leg and the pants, a BJJ practitioner's gi is not generally as tightly regulated. The practitioner can therefore benefit from a closer fit, providing less material for an opponent to manipulate.

Style of fighting

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu emphasizes ground fighting techniques and submission holds involving joint-locks and chokeholds also found in numerous other arts with or without ground fighting emphasis. The premise is that most of the advantage of a larger, stronger opponent comes from superior reach and more powerful strikes, both of which are somewhat negated when grappling on the ground.

BJJ permits a wide variety of techniques to take the fight to the ground after taking a grip. Once the opponent is on the ground, a number of maneuvers (and counter-maneuvers) are available to manipulate the opponent into a suitable position for the application of a submission technique. Achieving a dominant position on the ground is one of the hallmarks of the BJJ style, and includes effective use of the guard position to defend oneself from bottom, and passing the guard to dominate from top position with side control, mount, and back mount positions. This system of maneuvering and manipulation can be likened to a form of kinetic chess when utilized by two experienced practitioners. A submission hold is the equivalent of.