How Long to Get a Purple Belt in BJJ?
How long does it take to earn that purple belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu?
If you’re new to bjj or are curious about the different, this may be one of the questions on your mind.
The average time it takes to get a purple belt in bjj is around 4 to 5 years. Some may get their purple belt faster than others due to training consistency, prior grappling experience, or even athleticism.
Purple Belt in BJJ – Key Points
- On average it takes 3-5 years to get a purple belt in bjj
- A purple belt is the 3rd belt of 5 total bjj belts and is considered the first advanced belt
- A bjj purple belt is considered quite dangerous against any untrained individual
- In face, in a street fight, a purple belt should be able to take down, control, and submit any untrained opponent around the same size
- There is usually a longer gap between blue and purple belt
- It is actually quite hard to get a purple belt and generally only 5% of people who start bjj will make it to purple
- In terms of how you get your purple belt in jiu jitsu, it is based on skill and techniques learned, consistent training, and the ability to consistently control and submit white and blue belts
A competitive purple belt may have part of their game that is close to black belt level but may also have weaknesses in their bjj (most frequently these are takedowns, leg locks, pinning, and overall control)
What Does It Take to Get a Purple Belt in Jiu Jitsu?
In our opnion the below are some things to focus on in order to get a purple belt in jiu jitsu:
- Personal Development and Mindset:
- Don’t buckle under the pressure of chasing a new belt rank.
- Focus on addressing personal weaknesses and always strive to perform your best.
- Openness to Techniques:
- Remain receptive to learning new techniques and positions.
- Refrain from dismissing a technique just because you’re already proficient in it.
- Mastery and Timing:
- Learn and practice multiple techniques, ensuring you understand the correct timing for each.
- Maintain the inquisitiveness and receptiveness you had as a white belt.
- Consistent Training:
- Commit to spending more time on the mat, ideally training 3 to 4 days both on and off the mat.
- Aim to perfect each technique, emphasizing quality over quantity.
- Versatility in Opponents:
- Be willing to spar with partners of all sizes and abilities.
- Understand and leverage the principles of BJJ that allow smaller practitioners to handle larger opponents.
- Competition Experience:
- Participate in BJJ competitions at both national and international levels.
- Competing helps to solidify your skills and exposes you to a variety of opponents and styles.
- Patience and Persistence:
- Recognize that advancing to a purple belt demands patience and consistent effort.
- The journey from blue to purple belt can be lengthy and challenging, but perseverance is key.
- Technical Proficiency:
- Exhibit a robust ability to guard pass and retain their guard.
- Demonstrate consistent success in applying various submissions during live rolling, especially against white and blue belts.
- Teaching Ability:
- Be competent enough to instruct lower belts in foundational techniques.
- Factors Influencing Progression:
- Dedication to regular training.
- Maintaining good physical health and minimizing injuries.
- The inherent athletic potential of the practitioner.
- The philosophy and standards of one’s gym and instructor.
- Strategic Awareness for Purple Belts:
- At the purple belt level, there’s a shift from understanding basic techniques to implementing strategy.
- Purple belts should know how to adapt and apply techniques in various situations without needing detailed instructions.
- The focus becomes more about strategy, understanding matchups, and how to counter different styles and physical attributes.
When Are You Ready for a Purple Belt in BJJ?
The simplest sign that you are ready for your purple belt in BJJ is when you are consistently controlling and submitting blue belts as well as catching purple belts with submissions every now and then.
Not a scientific measurement by any means, but anecdotally, I usually am awarded a new belt by my coach ~6 months to 1 year after I think I’m ready.
Often times its hard to gauge your skill level in jiu jitsu since everyone you are training with is also getting better along with you. It’s only until you go to a new gym or your spar with beginners then you realize how much your skill has grown.
Jiu Jitsu Belt Levels Explained
Just like any other martial arts, there are rankings in BJJ. This is actually divided into 5 major belt ranks.
- White – This is the first rank in BJJ. Everyone starts with a plain white belt on their first day of class. These people are the ones who just started practicing BJJ. Thus, getting to know the basic principles and fundamentals of the sport.
- Blue – Blue belts are more advanced compared to white belts. These practitioners are already equipped with knowledge and technicalities of the sport. Moreover, they can confidently do sweeps, take downs, guard, pass and submissions.
- Purple – Purple belts are the middlemen in BJJ. They are not beginners but not yet in the advanced stage, but almost there. At this rank, purple belts are already considered highly skilled. They are capable of defending one’s self and confidently using different BJJ movements. Moreover, these individuals know alot about the sport already so that they are able to identify their weaknesses. Thus, allowing them to constantly strive to improve. In addition to that, these purple belts can chain movements. This means, if one move does not work, they can easily transition to the other.
- Brown – Brown belts in BJJ are considered advanced already. These practitioners are so knowledgeable and skilled. Hence, they are capable of thinking 2-3 moves ahead of their opponents.
- Black – The masters and professors of BJJ are the black belts. These individuals have spent an average of 10 years in training. They have shown dedication and love of the sport. Also, they are living legends that are the true embodiment of what the art of jiu jitsu is all about. In addition to that, these professors are great examples to others on and off the mats.
To be honest, this is where you will see a high drop down rate because it is the true test of one’s ego. Due to the fact, that one can be submitted by someone smaller and lighter because they have been doing the sport for quite some time now.
In addition, you will see people in white persevere as they show up to class to learn and understand the sport.
Know that as a white belt, your coaches are providing you with the information that you will be using up until you reach black belt. Therefore, it is required that you focus on the basics and fundamentals of Jiu Jitsu. Listed below are the things that you should know if you are a white belt:
- Proper Grip
- BJJ specific movements like bridging and shrimping
- How to pass from different positions
- Basic sweep
Goal for White Belt
Each and everyone has a goal when they are a white belt. But one thing for sure is common to all white belts, it is to get better.
But what we want you to know is that one thing that your coaches and professors are looking at this rank is your ability to escape. More likely than not, at white belt, you will often find yourself in bad positions. Thus, giving your opponent the opportunity to submit you. Now, your goal is to become comfortable in these setups, and allow yourself to defend by finding ways to escape.
Another goal to have at this rank is to learn how to apply the most common and basic submissions, namely:
The second rank in the BJJ ranking system is blue belt. This rank is higher compared to white and probably one of the ranks, where most people stay the longest. In addition, this is the 2nd with the highest drop down rate.
But how good is a BJJ blue belt? Well, these people have spent a lot of time learning about the sport already. Therefore, they are highly capable of defending themselves in different scenarios. Moreover, they are already confident in live sparring compared to white belts. To add to that, they are capable of playing with different positions and techniques.
Also, if a blue belt has to go against someone with no BJJ experience/martial art, then know that they will be able to dominate the situation.
Just like what are expected of a white belt, here are the things required for BJJ blue belts:
- Ability to open the opponent’s guard
- Sweep opponent effectively
- Maintain dominant position like side control, mount, back mount
- Able to utilize submissions during live sparring
- Efficiency in different guard positions
Goal for Blue Belt
Like we always say, each and everyone has their own goal on what they would like to focus on and improve during a certain rank. However, the most common goal to meet during this time is to fill the large holes in your fundamental knowledge.
So what does that mean? Well, you must be able to master the fundamentals and become comfortable applying them. This means, one’s goal is to have a vast knowledge and skill set about BJJ. Therefore, having a deep understanding about the technicalities of the sport.
The middle child of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is the purple belt. This means, they have surpassed the two beginner belts which is white and blue.
Therefore, we can say that a BJJ purple belt is highly dangerous on and off the mats. They already have a solid understanding of the fundamental movements and principles in BJJ. Thus , making them highly successful and efficient if they have to go against someone regardless of their size and strength.
Moreover, these are people who have spent hundreds of hours on the mats already. Therefore, there is likelihood that they have already fine tuned their attacks and are capable of finding loopholes to improve.
As a purple belt, know that your teammates look up to you already. Therefore, being a good example on and off the mats is expected. Here are the requirements your coaches and professors are expecting from you:
- Capable of handling top and bottom game efficiently
- Solid grasp of leg attacks and leg defense fundamentals
- Confident in chaining different attacks
- Proper submission set up
- Assist coaches and professors in teaching beginner BJJ pracititoners
Goal for Purple Belt
As a purple belt, one’s goal is to improve their weaknesses. By this time, they should be gearing up and preparing themselves to enter the brown belt.
Therefore, they should focus on being well rounded. This means, they should focus on all different aspects of BJJ, from defenses to attacks.
Moreover, the goal at this rank is to understand your game and find ways to improve it. Therefore, mastery of one’s favorite positions and submission is a must.
Brown belts are considered the advanced level of BJJ already. These people have proven their skills and have shown dedication to the sport already. Moreover, these brown belts are what you can consider as well rounded.
Therefore, they are highly skilled and capable of setting traps towards their opponents. Moreover, they find ways and openings even in the most difficult positions.
If you watch a brown belt do live sparring, you can see the difference in how they play compared to the lower ranks.
Just like the lower ranks, these brown belts should have an arsenal in BJJ. Well, we can even say the complete arsenal of escapes, attacks and other technicalities of the sport. But check out the list of what is required and expected of a BJJ brown belt:
- Deep understanding of the fundamentals and principles of the sport
- Teaching lower rank practitioners
- Effective flow on the mats
- Able to think 3 to 4 moves ahead of their opponent
Goal for Brown Belt
As a brown belt, your goal should be: to be able to master all the requirements of the lower ranks. This means, you are a well rounded individual who is capable of teaching others about the sport already.
Thus, reflecting the hard work and dedication you have put into the sport.
These black belts are so dangerous on and off the mats. Therefore, if they find themselves in a street fight against someone weaponless, then they are capable of defense.
As a black belt, one is required to share their knowledge of the sport to others. This means, black belts are required to guide and air lower ranks. Thus, shaping them to excel in BJJ.
To add to that, it is required to share knowledge and experience on how to become better at the sport. Lastly, these black belts are required to continuously learn.
What is great about BJJ is that there is always something new and interesting. Each and every time, there will be something new to experience.
Goal for Black Belt
Aside from teaching others, a black belt should aim to be the living embodiment of what BJJ is all about. Therefore, the goal is to become a good example and inspiration on and off the mats to their students.
Moreover, one should be able to encourage and make sure that their students are improving each and every time they come in for class.
How Hard Is It to Get a Purple Belt in BJJ?
Earning your purple belt is hard. This will take a lot of sweat and dedication to achieve this.
From crushing your ego, and trying to understand different concepts at white belt. Then having moved up to blue belt where you start to finally become confident in applying your skills and techniques, to levelling up to a purple belt.
What I just mentioned may sound so smooth. But trust me, these purple belts are dedicated. They are continuously working hard to become better at what they do.
From mastering the fundamentals, to applying different variations of techniques and attacks. To actually identify what is wrong with certain movements they do and continuously training in order for them to excel.
But all this hard work pays off. These purple belts are people to look up to. They wouldn’t have achieved this rank if they did not put in a lot of effort every time they train.
Which BJJ Belt is hardest to get?
In addition, that black belt is the testament of how much one loves the sport. These people have spent thousands of hours on the mats, consistently learning about the art.
Do know that not all BJJ black belts have the natural talent to excel. These people were once inexperienced but they worked hard. This means, they did not quit despite the hardships experienced when they started and went along learning BJJ.
What Percentage of People Get a Purple Belt in BJJ?
|White Belt to Purple Belt||5%|
|Blue Belt to Purple Belt||20%|
As we all know, in BJJ, the third rank is purple belt. Therefore, there are two ranks to surpass in order to achieve this one.
The percentage of white belts making it to purple belt is only 5%. Like we said earlier, white belts have a lot of drop out rate. Now, around 20% of blue belts stay committed and move up to purple belt.
Why Do a Small Amount of People Achieve Their Purple Belt in BJJ?
Second to the highest dropout rate in BJJ is blue belt. Therefore, not a lot of athletes actually achieve their purple belt.
There is something called the blue belt blues. This is when a BJJ practitioner experiences this crisis of whether to continue the sport or not. Do note, that this can happen at any rank, but most commonly at blue.
These blue belts may have 4 stripes already but due to changes in life, they might not push through with BJJ to get that purple belt.
How Long Does it Take to go from Blue Belt to Purple Belt in BJJ?
The length will vary depending on the practitioner. But the average years usually spent to achieve a purple belt will take about 2-5 years.
This will depend on many different things. But if you want to achieve that faster, be consistent in training. Moreover, always strive to improve and get better each and every time you step on those mats.
How Long Do You Stay Purple Belt in BJJ?
he average year one stays at purple belt is around 3-4 years. However, this will depend on many different factors like:
- Consistency in training
- Skills and techniques
- Competitions skills
Some people can get it faster compared to others. But this does not mean one is not good. It just shows that we all have our own journey and things to learn along the way.
Why Do People Quit Jiu-Jitsu?
Why do people quit Jiu Jitsu even if it is so good? Well, each and everyone has their own reason. Moreover, one’s martial arts journey will never be the same as others.
Let us go over this short list of the most common reasons.
- Cost – We all know that BJJ can be expensive. But trust me it is worth it. Some people have different priorities at the moment, and their least priority at the time is BJJ.
- Life changes/transitions – Something inevitable and permanent in life is change. Some people will start families, new jobs, move to new places and settling in will be their top priority at that time.
- Injury – As you know, BJJ is a full combat sport that requires physical exertion. One thing that can happen on the mats is injury. This can be something minor or major. But there are those people who despite being able to recover, prefer not to continue with the sport.
- Jiu Jitsu is not for me – Despite trying their best on the mats by exerting the time and effort, soon they will realize it is not for them. Trust me, this happens and this is totally ok. Life is too short, so do what makes you happy
Those are the top most common reasons why people quit. But one thing is for sure, if you stop BJJ now, you can always come back if you think you are ready.
How to Improve Faster at BJJ:
Some tips to improve faster at bjj and make it to purple belt sooner are:
- Be Complete – Try to be acutely aware of your own weaknesses and have a plan to address and improve upon them
- Train – This one’s obvious but try to be consistent and keep showing up to class even when you don’t want to (without overtraning)
- Compete – Win or lose, your coaches and professors will acknowledge your effort. In addition, when you join a competition, you will be able to identify your weaknesses that you have to improve on.
- Fundamentals – Make sure to learn the fundamentals of BJJ. While flashy moves may seem funner especially in the beginning putting time into learning the fundamentals and defense will pay huge dividends down the line.
Other Frequently Asked Questions
Is Purple Belt High in BJJ?
Purple belt is considered in between the beginner and advanced Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. One can consider it as a high rank because at this stage the athlete has vast knowledge already. Moreover, they are capable of doing BJJ techniques confidently and able to see things that they need to improve on.
Moreover, these people are already confident on the mats. Therefore, they are expected to assist their coaches and professors in teaching lower ranks.
Can Purple Belts Teach a Jiu Jitsu Class?
Yes, a purple belt can teach a jiu jitsu class. In fact, it’s not uncommon that a purple belt will teach beginner’s jiu jitsu classes at many gyms.
A purple belt should be able to break down and explain simple techniques in jiu jitsu to others especially beginners.
How Long to Get a Blue Belt in BJJ?
The average years spent in training as a white belt to get a blue belt, is around 1-2 years. Some practitioners can get it faster because of their experience prior to BJJ. This means, they have probably tried different sports related to BJJ like:
- Catch wrestling
- Mixed Martial Arts
But note that each and everyone has their own journey. As a white belt, your first goal and milestone to achieve is to earn your white stripe.
How Long Does It Take to Get a Purple Belt in BJJ?
The average time it takes to get a purple belt in bjj is around 4 to 5 years. Some may get their purple belt faster than others due to training consistency, prior grappling experience, or even athleticism.
Is It Possible to Get a Purple Belt in Two Years?
Yes, it is possible to get a purple belt in two years, but it is extremely unlikely and very rare. This achievement is usually only for those who are extremely dedicated to bjj or have a very strong back ground in other grappling based martial arts.
What About in Three Years?
Yes, it is also possible to get a purple belt in 3 years, but still pretty unlikely. While the odds of this happening are definitely greater than getting a purple belt in two years, it would still likely require a high level of dedication, consistent training, and athleticism.
How Long to go from Purple to Brown Belt?
Generally it takes 2-3 years to go from purple to brown belt in bjj. In my own personal experience, I have been purple belt so far for 2 years and I feel that I am probably nearing brown belt in the next year.
However, this again can vary depending on individual factors.
How Long Does It Take to Get a Brown Belt in BJJ?
On average, it can take 5-8 years to get a brown belt in BJJ. This is no easy feat and requires consistent training with no major lay offs from training.
However, if you can get to brown you can definitely reach black belt!
How Long to Get a Black Belt in BJJ?
The average year to get a black belt is around 10-11 years. This will depend on many things. Of course, we have to count the time spent training, the skills, leadership and technical ability.
But do know that some people are actually able to get their black belt faster compared to others. There are several athletes who were actually able to acquire their black belt in less than five years like Caio Terra, BJ Penn, Geo and Ritchie Martinez, Travis Stevens, etc.
What Do BJJ White Belt Stripes Mean
If you start with BJJ, know that you will automatically be a white belt. Hence, your belt will be the standard white belt with the black bar at the end. Now, the more you show up to training and gain skills, your coach or professor can give you a stripe.
Now what do these BJJ stripes mean for a white belt? This means you are able to meet the set expectations of your coaches, professors and BJJ school. They are able to see that you are understanding and able to execute the different skills on the mats.
Hope this has been helpful!
Catch ya next time!