Age and BJJ Competition: Nothing but a Number?

GracieMag recently interviewed a 36 year old brown belt, Ram Ananda, who recently won  brown belt light-featherweight division at the IBJJF Worlds.

In the interview he states that he doesn’t find much of a difference between the masters and adult division, and that winning the division is proof that age is really just a self- limiting belief. He also mentions the men in the masters division are particularly strong…

I wish I could say I can’t wait for “old man strength” when I get older, except I’m not a man. So instead, I’ll have the pleasure of a constant battle against osteoporosis, muscle atrophy and hot flashes in my future.


Did I also happen to mention it’s my birthday on Thursday?  Just throwing that out there.

Anyway, what do you guys think? Do you feel age is really nothing but a number when it comes to competition? Personally, I don’t feel there is too much of a difference between the adult division and up to like, 35 or 40. After 40 I do believe there is enough of a difference in style, speed and strength to warrant a separate division.

Let me know you opinion- otherwise, have a great day everyone!




Filed under bjj

2 responses to “Age and BJJ Competition: Nothing but a Number?

  1. Ambroise Bachot

    I think that something happens for most of us at 40. Seemingly within days of my 40th birthday I developed challenges with my right knee (meniscus, LCL, etc.). At that point, the game changed for me. It’s now less about “submit the other guy” as it is “compete and don’t wreck my knee… again”. It has been kind of liberating to work from a position of weakness rather than one of strength. Radical strategies like “pulling side control” really have no place in BJJ… until you’re physically compromised but still enjoy the game!

  2. I felt those physical twinges myself as I got closer to and past 40, and yeah life in general leaves us with more and more nagging old injuries as we go through it. I think the major difference as you get older is speed, but I can see a person doing bjj at the top of his or her game at least as long or longer than any other sports that already have in their mid 30’s or older. If they have the same kind of time that is. 😉

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