Skip to Content

Why Is BJJ So Expensive? (Full Breakdown)

So Why Is BJJ So Expensive?

There are a couple main things driving up the cost of bjj such as:

  • popularity of the sport
  • large adult member base
  • demand of the martial art
  • related to costs of running a bjj academy such as:
    • paying for staff (such as high quality black belt instructors)
    • paying affiliation fees (such as that found in big brand gyms such as Gracie Barra, 10th Planet, or Renzo Gracie)
Gym TypeAvg Cost (per month)
Smaller BJJ Gym$50-$100
Average Gym$100-$175
Big Name Gym $175-$300
How Much BJJ Gyms Generally Cost

My gym that is based out of San Diego currently charges (as of this writing) $150 a month for unlimited jiu jitsu classes and $200 for unlimited amount of all classes (bjj, striking, strength and conditioning)

First and foremost, there is likely a short supply of quality instructors who want to teach at an academy without opening up and running their own gym.

The cost of BJJ will always be higher due to the larger demand when compared to other martial arts.

In this post we break down the average cost of a bjj gym as well as how much it costs based on country and when compared to different martial arts.

Key Takeaways

  • The average cost of a monthly Brazilian jiu jitsu gym membership in the US can range from $100-$200 dollars
  • BJJ gyms operate much like other gyms and generally charge monthly as well as offering a drop in fee for daily or weekly passes
  • The reason why bjj is so expensive is likely due to:
    • requiring guided, expert instruction
    • overall popularity of the sport
  • Some reasons why a specific gym may cost more:
    • location
    • gym notoriety
    • size of the gym
    • quality of instruction
  • Some tips to make bjj more affordable:
    • First, compare quality of teaching and prices at different local academies
    • See if your gym offers a yearly cost instead of a monthly cost like my gym which could save your a couple hundred
    • See if your gym offers you to pay per class (which may be cheaper than monthly fee)
    • Learn from Youtube or other free resources online
    • Buy an instructional with a friend or home training partner and practice it together
    • Lastly, see if your gym offers any other promotions or may be willing to work with you on price

Breaking Down How Much I Paid for BJJ in 2023

Expense CategoryDetailsAnnual Cost ($)
BJJ Gym MembershipYearly gym membership fee$1,500.00
BJJ ApparelBrown belt rash guards, sets from Nation Athletics and Future Kimonos, X Martial$364.75
BJJ Tournaments3 tournaments at ~$75 each$257.88
InstructionalsTwo Gordon Ryan instructionals, 3 months of Lachlan Giles’ Submeta$773.23
Health InsuranceHealth insurance, charged bi-monthly$1,271.52
Commuting ExpensesCost of gas for commuting, approximately 1 hour from gym$1,344.71

Above is my breakdown for jiu jitsu and jiu jitsu related costs for 2023 – some of these are direct costs and some are indirect. I currently live in California and train at 10th Planet San Diego (see below) so these costs will generally be higher when compared to other locations.

How Much for Jiu Jitsu Classes?

The cost of jiu-jitsu classes and membership fees will differ greatly depending on a number of factors (mentioned above). However..

The average cost of a monthly Brazilian jiu jitsu gym membership in the US can range from $75-$200 dollars.

CountryAvg Monthly Cost for BJJ (in USD)
South America$60-$120
here are average prices for other countries

Things that effect the cost of a Brazilian jiu jitsu gym:

  • location
  • gym notoriety
  • size of the gym
  • quality of instruction
  • type of classes offered
  • number of instructors
  • amount of classes offered

A jiu-jitsu school in larger cities like New York or Los Angeles are always going to cost significantly more than those in smaller towns. 

If you’re training at a large academy that has several instructors and multiple classes a day, expect to pay more. Not only will you be covering the cost of your gym owners’ and instructor’s salary, but you’ll also have to pay for rent at the facility. 

Average Jiu Jitsu Costs

Here’s a breakdown of various costs associated with Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) training. You can generally expect the most expensive part of bjj to be the gym membership:

1. Gym Membership Fees

  • Monthly Fees: Varies widely, typically not listed on websites but can expect ~$75-$200/month
  • Yearly Fees: Often offered at a discount compared to monthly fees.

2. Drop-in Fees

  • Range: $20 – $50 per class.

3. BJJ Apparel

  • Gi Cost: $100 – $300 for a high-quality gi.
  • No-Gi Gear: $50 – $100 for rash guards and grappling shorts.

4. Instructionals

  • Online Material: Costs vary; great for supplementing in-class training.

5. Private Lessons

  • Cost Range: $20 – $200 per session depending on instructor

6. BJJ Seminars

  • Costs: Can vary based on the instructor and location from $50-$300

7. Tournaments

  • Tournament Fees: $60 – $200 per tournament depending on organizations with possible early registration discounts.

8. Additional Training Gear

  • Mouth guard: $10 – $20.
  • BJJ Bag: $20 – $50.
  • Knee Guard: $10 – $50.
  • Ankle Guard: $10 – $50.
  • Headgear: $20 – $50.

How to Reduce the Cost of BJJ

There are a few things you can do to reduce the cost of BJJ.

  • The first thing you can do is shop around and compare quality of teaching and prices at different academies in your area. (If there’s a big difference in price, try to find out why.)

Maybe the higher price academy has better instructors, and better training facilities or they offer different classes (e.g. kids BJJ, women’s only BJJ). Be sure to check out the duration of the trial period, as well as the type of payment that is offered. 

  • Another thing you can do is to train less often and see if your gym offers you to pay per class and you can supplement your training with online material and instructionals

While BJJ is a great sport, it can be addictive. Many people find themselves wanting to train more and more as they get more experienced with the sport. 

While learning in class is always recommended and shouldn’t be avoided, you can train less in class and learn from instructionals with a partner or friend

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu can wind up costing you a lot of money if you aren’t careful. Make sure to only train as often as you can afford, and consider some of these tips.

Is BJJ Worth the Money?

In the end, is bjj worth the money? That is a tough question to answer.

BJJ is a martial art that you can truly benefit from at any age or skill level. It is a sport that can be enjoyed by both genders, of all ages, and even people with various levels of athleticism.

If you are on a tight budget and can’t afford to pay for BJJ classes, it is possible to train at home and learn through online material with a friend or partner.

Although you won’t be able to spar, you can still do plenty of drilling and learn some basic moves. 

While in class training and sparring is always preferred you can still learn the basics at home.

If you’re serious about training, you’re going to have to make sacrifices. That doesn’t mean you have to quit your job and train full-time, but it does mean you have to be smart about your money and prioritize your spending.

I know for me bjj is always worth the money – leaving class you feel reborn, got a great workout in, and learned invaluable skills.

Other Related Questions

Why Do BJJ or Other Martial Arts Gyms Not List Their Prices?

This is likely a marketing tactic to get you to go to their gym in person and maybe take a free trial class before giving you the sales pitch. They may also want you to fully experience what they have to offer before providing a cost.

I’ve done several martial arts (such as boxing, aikido, judo, bjj), and this has been my usual experience.

How Much Does Gracie Jiu-Jitsu Cost?

Gracie Jiu-Jitsu, was created by the legendary Gracie family in Brazil and eventually became known as modern Brazilian jiu jitsu.

While their brand has certainly grown in popularity, it isn’t necessarily any more expensive than other BJJ academies. You can find a variety of gyms and brands that teach the specific Gracie techniques such as Gracie Barra and Renzo Gracie Academies.

Whatever academy you choose to train at, be aware that there are certain variations of BJJ that are more costly than others. 

BJJ has evolved over the years and different academies tend to focus on different aspects of the sport. That being said, GJJ tends to fall under the BJJ category. 

However, it is often considered the more “pure” form of BJJ due to the Gracie family’s stance against certain training methods and gear.

How Much Do BJJ Private Lessons Cost?

Depending on how often you choose private lessons over group classes, you could save money in the long run. That being said, private lessons can be extremely costly especially if they are taught by a bjj famous black belt instructor

Expect to pay anywhere from $20-$200/session for private BJJ lessons at an academy. If you’re paying more than that, make sure you’re actually getting your money’s worth. 

As far as how often you should be taking private lessons, that all depends on your skill level and learning style. If you’re brand new to BJJ, you definitely want to take group classes first. Make sure you have a solid foundation before moving on to private lessons.

How Much Does Other BJJ Training Gear Cost

Here is a breakdown of some of the most common gear used in bjj. While these aren’t required for training items such as a mouth guard and bjj bag are strongly recommended:

  • Mouth guard – $10 to $20
  • BJJ bag – $20 to $50
  • Knee guard – $10 to $50
  • Ankle guard – $10 to $50
  • Headgear – $20 to $50