Can you cast your mind back to the first time you walked into your Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu academy with your Gi on? Putting on your Gi was simple, right? However, putting your belt on wasn’t that easy. Older students often watch beginners try to get their grips with their belts, and it’s obvious that not everyone who walks in the academy for the first time would know how to tie a Jiu-Jitsu belt straight away. Of course, those that have already trained in another type of martial arts, other than BJJ, would have more understanding than that of a complete beginner.

Judo is a type of martial arts that really requires grappling. So, when you want to engage into these types of sports, the first thing to learn is the correct methods of tying your belt, so it won’t come off when your try to perform techniques.

Learning to tie a Jiu-Jitsu belt

When talking about the best way to tie a BJJ belt, there are several ways to do so. Some folks don’t mind their belt coming undone; however, others want it to stay tight all throughout. In the case of a lapel based attacking game, the person may actually prefer a looser belt. A tighter knot would be preferred by a pressure passer who does not want to be giving out weapons to the worm guard player. 

There are a few methods in tying a BJJ belt, and they can all be distinguished from one another. In this article, we are going to focus on four ways, each having both advantages and disadvantages.

The basic tie

Let’s discuss the commonly used method of tying a BJJ belt — thebasic tie. The majority of people who practice BJJ use this, especially beginners of this martial arts. The basic tie is a tight tie, but it can be easily undone.

To do it, first identify the middle point of the belt. Once you have found it, place it below your navel extending both ends on your waist going behind you. Then at your back, cross both ends again and pull them forward so that they meet in front. Make sure they have the same length. Next, fold the right hand side over the left (it is right over left first), then loop it under all layers of the belt that you have created. Lastly, fold the bottom strand over the top to create a knot.

Tying a belt the BJJ way

This method that we will discuss now is specific to the art of BJJ, a preferred tie that is frequently used during competitions. It is a very tight tie, and extremely difficult to get undone. It is also the same as the original Judoka tie.

This uses the same steps as the basic tie method, but differs in the looping part. So, again find the middle point of the belt going around your waist and to your back, then going to the front. Now, to loop both ends, you need to cross the left side of your belt over the right, and then pull it under all layers of the belt until it comes back out of the top. Next, with the original left side of the belt out of the top pass the right side of the belt through just the first layer to the left, leaving it loose. This will form a loop where the bottom side can now pass through. This will be the tightest possible BJJ tie.

Tying a Belt the BJJ Way

Tying a belt the Gracie way

This method was originally used by the Gracie brothers; however, it is the least secured method. For this reason, it is rarely seen nowadays. Similar with the first two methods that we have discussed, find the middle part of your belt and then extend it around your waist, going back then having both ends in front. The only difference here is the way in which the knot is created. No looping is used with the Gracie method, so just simply make a knot in front.

The Karate belt tie

People who practice other types of martial arts, like Karate, use different techniques in tying their belts. A video here shows how to do the Karate belt way. This method is extremely neat, though it’s not that secured as the other BJJ methods that we have discussed.

To tie your belt for Karate, hold one end at the hip, placing it at the left side. Then take the other end all around your waist, going to your back and front until it sits over the first end. At this point, there will only be one end in front. Take this and pass it, like in the first two methods, under all the layers from bottom to top.

The Unbreakable BJJ Knot

Double Water Knot: The unbreakable BJJ knot

This is a very interesting way to tie your BJJ belt, and one that is pretty much unbreakable. It starts with a granny knot, followed by a follow through that will ensure your belt has a shape that is almost impossible to break.

And when talking about how to hold your Gi in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, first tie a granny knot at the end of your belt. With the other end of your belt, go around your waist until you have both ends together in front of your body. It’s like tying a water knot and going on to adjust the belt as many times as necessary. It’s a bit hard to explain on paper, so check out the video below. What’s important is to understand that this method of tying the belt has 100% secured knot and that your Gi will not slip even a bit. Its common name is the Double Water Knot.

So, the next time that you start to think about how to tie a Jiu-Jitsu belt, just remember that there is not just the one way to do it!