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Frequently Asked Questions

Your First Class: What to know

  • Please try to arrive 10 minutes early so that you can meet the instructor, sign a waiver, check your uniform, and be ready to begin the class on time. 

  • Bring sandals or flip flops. Bare feet are prohibited outside of the mat area, and no shoes are permitted on the mats. 

  • Bring a water bottle. The gym has filtered water if you need to fill or refill it.

  • The uniform:

    • Gi class: If you have your own gi (black or white), please bring it. The gym does have several spare gis you are able to wear if needed for your first class or two.

    • Nogi class: A rash guard and jiu jitsu shorts should be worn.

    • Please see full uniform guidelines below.

    • Most people wear a mouth guard during sparring.

  • Bring a positive attitude and get ready to have fun and learn. 

  • Torse House Rules: Click here to see our rules for the gym.


Uniform guidelines for gi and nogi

  • All gi’s at Torse House must be black or white, and we ask that they not include patches or logos from other jiu jitsu academies.

    • Colored gi’s are allowed only on weekends. If you show up with a colored gi during the week, you will be asked to change or watch class.

  • For nogi classes, participants should wear a rash guard and jiu-jitsu shorts. Rash guards should be mostly black, but can have designs on them. Shorts can be colored, but must not have pockets, zippers, drawstrings or any other elements that could hinder you or your partner’s training. Women should wear full-length leggings or spats (no shorts). 

  • All gi and nogi uniforms must be clean. If uniforms are noticeably dirty or unwashed, you will be asked to change or watch class.

What is a gi? 

  • A gi is the uniform worn during jiu-jitsu (as well as various other martial arts, including judo, karate, and sambo) training. The word “gi” comes from the Japanese term, “Keikogi” or “Judogi”. 

  • Keiko means practice; gi means dress or clothes. A gi consists of 3 pieces; the gi jacket, pants, and belt.

  • Different parts of a gi are strategically utilized for grips, chokes, guards, and other techniques during training. Typically, it is heavily stitched and usually made of cotton to withstand the rigors of daily practice.

Is jiu jitsu good exercise?

  • Most definitely! In addition to being immensely FUN, training will increase your muscle tone, bodily coordination, cardiovascular capacity, muscular endurance, balance, and will (inevitably) reduce overall body fat. All that being said, please make sure you hydrate and fuel yourself properly before and after training.

Is jiu jitsu safe?

  • Like any sport, there is the possibility of injury in jiu jitsu. We aim to limit this by closely observing each class, ensuring training partners are helpful, and encouraging proper and safe techniques.

What class should I start with? 

  • Torse House offers a variety of classes, most of which are friendly to all levels. Consult Professor Thiago if you have any questions about the best class to attend.

How much should I train?

  • This is entirely up to you, but most students train multiple times a week as consistency and ‘mat time’ is the key to improvement.

Will I spar during my first class?

  • Beginners are not made to spar until they are comfortable, which usually takes a few weeks.

What is the difference between gi and nogi?

  • In short – and perhaps the most obvious point – the uniform! In gi classes, you wear the traditional jiu jitsu gi uniform. In nogi classes, you don’t! For gi jiu jitsu, the uniform is a fundamental piece of most techniques and movements. Nogi jiu jitsu more closely resembles wrestling as it is often faster paced and places emphasis on speed rather than leverage.

I'm a woman: Is jiu jitsu right for me?

  • YES! Jiu Jitsu is an excellent choice for women, especially for how it contributes to one’s self-defensive ability, sense of community and belonging, and of course, mental and physical fitness.

  • Regarding self-defense, it is a fantastic skillset to have (and practice) because, when an “opponent’s” physical size exceeds our own, jiu jitsu trains us to utilize leverage and specific techniques that work to fill that gap.

  • Outside of self-defense, the jiu jitsu community is widespread and actively growing; passionate people with a shared passion come together to practice, make mistakes, and learn from one another.

  • Lastly, unlike other popularized martial arts, jiu jitsu does not include over-aggressive attacks, punches, or kicks that leave people unconscious. Rather, jiu-jitsu is quite the opposite. It is a more fluid, almost graceful-looking martial art that will challenge you both physically (get ready to increase your cardiovascular endurance!) and mentally, as you think logically to apply learned techniques and movements during training.

Is there an age limit?

  • No! We have members here who range from 4 years old to over 60! We offer both adult and kid's classes. As a sport, jiu-jitsu is truly for everyone.

Is jiu-jitsu good for kids?

  • Absolutely. Jiu jitsu teaches kids a variety of techniques, instills confidence, discipline, and is fun.

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