Gracie Barra Downers GroveGracie Barra Downers Grove

Jiu-Jitsu for Everyone

Jiu Jitsu x Obesity

There was a time when ” cuddly ” even chubby children were considered a mark of good health. With the arrival of the twenty-first century this comparisons has become a cause for concern. The development of the food industry and the advertisements on TV have initiated a tremendous change to the diet of the human population, resulting in the intake of horrendous amounts of calories and health problems.
While our GB Kids, are making a tremendous impact on the communities of Downers Grove, Western Springs, Hinsdale, Glen Ellyn , Wheaton, Naperville, Burr Ridge and Clarendon Hills, sharing with their family and friends in school the benefits of our teachings and lifestyle, in Brazil , Jiu Jitsu’s homeland sadly, obesity is growing at an alarming rate. According to data from the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics ( IBGE ) , 50.1 % of Brazilian men aged over 20 years are overweight , 12.4% of this total are considered obese . Among women of the same age group , 48 % are also overweight and 16.9 % were classified as obese.

Obesity has become an epidemic disease, responsible for more deaths than malnutrition. Worldwide, 250 million people are considered to be overweight or obese. Among them, children as young as 5 to 9 years, according to information by the IBGE. This has led to the advertising of numerous slimming diets with the false promise of eliminating excess pounds. In some cases even medications and bariatric surgeries are necessary to treat people who are overweight.

This is where Jiu Jitsu kicks in! It is more than just a sport as it is one of the best remedies to lose weight, maintain general health and regain self-esteem. Andrew Wooten, a GB Brown Belt, was saved from obesity thanks to the gentle art. Read on for the inspirational story of the winner.

American and currently lives in California, the international capital of Jiu Jitsu as it is known today. He has always practiced sports and never been careful about what he ate. When he stopped exercising altogether he began gaining weight at an alarming rate, quickly becoming obese… Within a short while a healthy teenager turned into a obese one. One day a friend invited him to try out the gentle art. Andrew wasn’t aware what faite had in store for him but it would turn around his life. It was six years ago he had the best experience of his life: encountering jiu jitsu . It was then and there his life changed forever.

With rigorous training and practicing Andrew lost 60 pounds . The magic formula ? Jiu – Jitsu + Healthy Diet + Determination + Willpower .

How long have you practiced Jiu – Jitsu ?

I started 6 years ago at Gracie Barra Augusta, Georgia.

How did you encounter Jiu – Jitsu ?

I was in college, it was a crazy time in my life. I was overweight, unhappy with my studies and life in general. I had a colleague who was practicing Jiu Jitsu, his name is Kelly and he was blue belt at the time. One day Kelly asked me if I wanted to go to a practice with him, he knew I had already practiced combat sports in school , and I told myself I had nothing to lose at that point. I went with him and it was the best experience of my life! I joined GB school immediately afterwards and since then I have not missed more than a week of training.

What was your first step to embark this on journey ?

My first step was to start training. I trained 2x a day and crossfit 1 x per day, 5 days per week . Exercising so much made me lose 30kg. Jiu jitsu was my outlet. Then I started exercising more and eating healthy. I ate brown rice, vegetables, chicken, egg whites, oatmeal and fruit. No alcohol or sodas, I only drank water. I was very determined and strict with my diet .

Today you are able to maintain a healthy weight . What is the “recipe ” for this?

Following the GB lifestyle and eating healthy. Training 5 times a week helps me maintain mental balance and fit.

What is the greatest positive impact of Jiu – jitsu on your life?

There are many positive changes. But if I have to choose one… Jiu jitsu has made me more focused and determined in all aspects of my personal life

Any future plans ?

Many. I’ve been focusing on my studies but my biggest dream is to become a black belt, open my own school and share my knowledge of the gentle art. Jiu Jitsu has changed my life and I want to have the pleasure to teach as well as show how this art can change our lives for the better.

alw2-2Here are 3 tips for those who are embarking on this journey .

1 – Be Committed: If you want to change your life for the better, you must do so entirely. Change everything: eating, sleeping and thinking. It should be a lifestyle .

2 – Focus: Do not let small obstacles get in the way of your goals. Life is too short to waste time with drama and whining.

3 – Practice Jiu-Jitsu and don’t hold back: Do not get frustrated when losing. We all have our good and bad days on the mat. Always stay positive and you will learn and grow continuously.

Source :

Come and try one of our lessons ( free) of charge you have nothing to lose only to gain. Call us now: 630 964 1414

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