ZOO BJJ FAQs
How can I get started?
How much does it cost to train?
The first week is free and then cost will depend on a number of factors such as how much you want to train, payment frequency (e.g. monthly, yearly), payment method, etc.
Do I have to have previous experience to participate?
No, all experience levels are welcome and no previous experience is required. In fact, most people have no martial arts experience when they start. Our fundamentals classes are designed for beginners to jump right in and feel welcome.
Do I need to have a certain level of fitness to start?
No, there is no prerequisite fitness level. We often hear people say they will come in when they get in better shape. The good news is that you will get in shape by learning and practicing the art. Don’t let your fitness level hold you back. We help you go at the right pace, so you will improve without risk of injury.
What should I wear to my first class and what equipment will I need?
If you are brand new to the martial arts, just wear comfortable gym clothes; most people wear shorts and a t-shirt. The only additional item we recommend is a water bottle.
Is there are particular day or class you recommend for beginners?
We have many different classes to fit a variety of needs. Do you want to get in shape? Fight competitively? Learn to defend yourself better? Join a community? We can help you do any or all of those things. Come in today to try a free week and we will meet with you to figure out which class or classes best suit your needs.
Will there be other beginners in my class?
Absolutely. There are always beginners in class. Plus, the advanced students are always eager to help you get on your way!
Should I bring a friend?
Sometimes people feel more comfortable trying something new when they have a friend to partner up with. In addition, it’s easier to stick to a new hobby when you have a friend to help keep you motivated. However, you are welcome to come by yourself as well. With our friendly and welcoming environment you will feel at home right away and meet new friends.
Can I watch a class before participating?
Absolutely! If you feel more comfortable seeing what our classes are like before participating, feel free to come watch first. We have a sitting area with a couch, many chairs and a restroom where you can make yourself at home while observing class. On the other hand, if you would like to try class on your first visit, you are welcome to do that as well, and we will help you settle right in.
Where are you located?
We are located at 2926 S. 3rd St. W. There is a small sign that says “The Barn Movement” in front of a residential home across from Hawthorne Elementary school. We rent “The Barn Movement Studio” which is behind the residential home mentioned above.
What days and times are your classes?
To fit a variety of schedules we offer day and night classes, 6 days a week! Our current schedule can be found at www.zoobjj.com/schedule
Where do I park?
You can park in the parking lot next to the building, on the side streets of Hiberta or Preston, or next to the school across the street.
Do you have a flexible schedule to accommodate members who juggle several things like work, school, and family obligations?
Yes, we offer several class options 6 days per week. In addition, we have a variety of membership options to accommodate different schedules and budgets. After you have checked out a few classes in your free trial period, we would be happy to sit down with you and walk through these options.
What is a typical class like?
We like to mix things up to keep it exciting, but a typical class will start off with a brief warm up. Sometimes the warm up will include calisthenics. Other times it will be a functional warm up where we incorporate movements that will be used during the technique portion of the class. Then the bulk of the class will be spent performing techniques that the instructor demonstrates. The instructor will monitor and help you drill the moves correctly until you are able to perform them without help. Finally, the class will usually conclude with a period where you perform the same techniques but with increased intensity and potentially more resistance from your partner. This allows you to get accustomed to executing the movements against an active opponent.
Are private lessons available and why might someone want to do them instead of group classes?
We are available for private lessons which can significantly accelerate your progress by focusing on improving your skill level and technique. Contact us for more information on the benefits of private lessons.
Are classes Co-Ed?
Yes, we have both males and females in all our classes.
How does the belt system work and how long does it take to get promoted?
In general, we promote according to the International Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Federation graduation system. There are fewer belts in the art of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu than many traditional martial arts. Adults start with a white belt which is then followed by blue, purple, brown, and then black. Within each belt color, skill is usually differentiated by stripes (or degrees). Typically, a student will achieve four stripes on each belt before progressing to the next belt color. As far as the length of time and skill set required to achieve the next degree or belt, this varies from school to school. It also depends on a variety of factors like how often the member trains, whether they are demonstrating noticeable improvement, etc. At our academy, we take pride in helping students truly earn their rank through encouragement, technical instruction, and a positive learning environment. While many new members are concerned with how quickly they achieve the next rank, we encourage an attitude of enjoying the learning process. This approach is more beneficial in the long run because improvement becomes the main focus, and rank advancement becomes more rewarding because it is earned.
How often should I train?
This answer is variable depending on an individual’s availability and fitness level. Like many sports, someone who practices more often will typically improve faster. However, if you are not accustomed to this type of training or need to improve your fitness level, you might start off only training one or two days per week and then build up to more sessions as your body becomes adjusted to the new demands you’re placing on it. Also, some people might have a demanding schedule between family, work, or school. However, at our school, we help you improve at the pace that works best for your body and schedule.
Do I have to compete?
We do have many members who compete in local and national events . However, the majority of our students don’t compete. We do feel that competition does have many positive benefits, but we also understand that it is not for everyone. Therefore, no one is ever pushed in that direction. However, if at some point you decide you would like to compete, let our instructors know and we would be glad to help you get prepared. Otherwise, we just want you to enjoy the Gentle Art without putting pressure on yourself.
How often do you clean the training area?
A clean, safe training environment is a priority to us! We sweep and disinfect the mats before and after every class.