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BJJ Competitions – Masters Divisions Explained

BJJ Masters Age Divisions Explained

BJJ masters age divisions are for those over the age 30 and are separated into these categories:

DIVISIONAGE GROUP
ADULT18-29
MASTER I30-35
MASTER II36-40
MASTER III41-45
MASTER IV46-50
MASTER V51-55
MASTER VI56 and up

However, if your age bracket qualifies for the Masters division you can still opt to compete in the adult division (ages 18-29).

If you’re over 30 years old and interested in signing up for a BJJ competition then you are considered qualified for the Masters division. Below are the bjj masters age broken down by age group.

The International Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Federation (IBJJF) is largest organization that holds frequent Brazilian jiu jitsu competitions – these competitions and others have divisions separated by sex, belt rank, weight, and age.



What Is IBJJF Masters 4 Age?

IBJJF Masters 4 age is for those who are age 46-50.


The IBJJF masters division in bjj are divisions for those over the age 30 and are separated into the above categories. These are the categories for ibjjf age divisions 2024 (keep in mind the competition point system is still the same for masters divisions).

Competition hosts have created different weight and age brackets to ensure fairness in the sport.

For IBJJF, the Masters division has been subdivided into 6 categories:

  • Masters 1 – 30-35 years.
  • Masters 2 – 36 to 40 years
  • Masters 3 – 41 to 45 years
  • Masters 4 – 46 to 50 years
  • Masters 5 – 51 to 55 years
  • Masters 6 – 56 and up

Another scenario is if you are a Master 6, opting to compete in the Master 1 division, then that is allowed too.

Keep in mind that you can only always go to a lower age division.

However, if you are 23 (adult division) then you are not allowed to compete in Master 2 which is for BJJ practitioners aged 36 to 40.


What Are the Master Divisions in BJJ?

The Masters division in BJJ has been divided into 6 different groups, starting at the 30 years old. 

  • Master 1 – 30-35 years.
  • Master 2 – 36 to 40 years
  • Master 3 – 41 to 45 years
  • Master 4 – 46 to 50 years
  • Master 5 – 51 to 55 years
  • Master 6 – 56 and up

What Age Group is Masters 3?

Masters 3 is for those who are age 41-45.

What Age Group is Masters 4?

Masters 4 is for those who are age 46-50.

What Age Group is Masters 5?

Masters 5 is for those who are age 51-55.

IBJJF Age Divisions 2024 For Men and Women

Now lets talk about IBJJF age divisions 2024 for men and women:

World famed International Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Federation has created different age divisions for its male and female competitors.

IBJJF regulates the sport to create a safe and competitive environment for its participants. 

To add to that, they want to give each competitor a fair match. They, again, divide competitors based on gender, weight, rank and age group.

IBJJF has age divisions for ages 4-60  years old. 

For 18 years old and above, it is composed of adults and masters division which is subcategorized further as you get older:

DIVISIONAGE GROUP
ADULT18-29
MASTER I30-35
MASTER II36-40
MASTER III41-45
MASTER IV46-50
MASTER V51-55
MASTER VI56 and up

Meanwhile, the youngest age a child can participate in a BJJ competition is at 4 years old.

DIVISIONAGE GROUP
MIGHT MITE I ≥ 4
MIGHT MITE II≥ 5
MIGHT MITE III≥ 6
PEE WEE I≥ 7
PEE WEE II≥ 8
PEE WEE III≥ 9
JUNIOR I≥ 10
JUNIOR II≥ 11
JUNIOR III≥ 12
TEEN I≥ 13
TEEN II≥ 14
TEEN III≥ 15
JUVENILE I≥ 16
JUVENILE II ≥ 17

Belt Level Differences – Adult vs Masters Divisions

So does belt rank affect the age division? There is a slight difference in difficulty between masters divisions at white, blue, purple and brown compared to adult divisions. 

If you are competing in masters divisions, it is sometimes a bit easier since you will be facing older individuals instead of those between the ages of 18-29.

However, if you are competing in the masters divisions at the black belt level then your matches will still be very challenging.

Why? You will be competing against practitioners who have been training BJJ for many years already.

Moreover, there are some living legends still participating in these competitions at masters level that you may be competing against.

Competitive Peak for BJJ Athletes

Each and every BJJ athlete will start at a different point in their life. This is due to different reasons, some may:

  • change of sports
  • recently want to get fit
  • found out about the sport and want to try
  • learn self defense

To add to that, the earliest that one can participate in a competition is at age four, for IBJJF Kids Championship. 

Although a lot of people who became world champions started training in their early teens, they slowly reap their efforts during their 20s and later at 30+ as they enter the masters division. 

Nonetheless, a number of BJJ competitors will peak in their competitive career at 33 years old.

During this age group, competitors are still in their most competitive years in BJJ.

Why Compete in Masters Division?

Why choose to compete in the masters division? A number of BJJ practitioners who compete in masters divisions are most likely those who started BJJ later in life and that is totally fine! 

Although BJJ relies on techniques, it will still be different competing with a younger opponent in the same rank and weight class.

BJJ is continuous learning. It doesn’t matter if you are getting older in the sport. There will always be something new to gain. It’s about those who stay despite hindrances and as you grow older in your beloved sport. 

Do I Have to Compete in My Own Age Bracket?

No, some competitions will let you compete at the adult agent bracket even if you are in a masters division.  

Hence, it will be your choice if you would like to move to a lower age bracket. But this can only be applicable depending on the rules and regulation of the organization hosting the tournament.

Thanks for reading and hope this has been informative – see you in the next one!

Other Frequently Asked Questions

If You Are 30+ Should You Compete in the Masters or Adult Division?

This will largely come down to your preference. If you are over 30 years old you are automatically eligible for the Masters division. However, you can still opt to compete in the adult division (age: 18-29).

Most bjj competitors believe that competing in the adult division will be harder than competing in the Masters division. This may or may not be the case depending on the organization and competitors in each respective bracket. A good rule of thumb is to try the Masters division and if you do well, you can always do the adult division next time.

Speaking from personal experience and competing in both the adult division and the Masters 1 division, the Masters 1 division (ages 30-34) is still very competitive.

You will also know you fare against younger bjj athletes through training at your gym. So if you do well against them by all means feel free to jump into the adult division in your next competition.


Which Bracket Will Have More Competitors?

Generally, the adult division bracket will have more competitors. So if your goal is to have more matches you’d be better off signing up for the adult division.