Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Can I try the classes before signing up?

You can try our classes for a whole week for free

I am only visiting Zürich for a short time, can I come to training?

Of course you can. You can train a whole week for free with us. If you plan to stay longer than that, please get in touch with one of our instructors before or after a class.

Do I have to be fit to try BJJ?

The best way to get fit for BJJ is by training BJJ. Your fitness will improve just by coming to class.

It doesn’t matter whether you are overweight, underweight or in great shape. You can go at your own pace and if you have to, you can always sit out for a round if you need a break.

What should I wear? What should I bring to my first class?

Bring comfortable sports clothes. A t-shirt or rash guard and shorts or pants without zippers. Don’t forget to bring a water bottle.

To which class should I go for my trial class?

If you are new to the sport, come to our basic course classes. These are the best place to start. If you want to train in the mornings or over lunch, check out our all levels classes.

Have you trained somewhere else before for more than 3 months? Try our fundamentals classes instead.

If you are a blue belt or higher, try both our intermediate and fundamentals classes.

You can find all our classes on our schedule page.

I want to start but I don’t have a gi. Do I need to buy one?

We do sell gi and nogi gear at the BJJ Lab, but you don’t need a gi for our basic course.

We have loaner gis if you are trying an all-levels class and need a gi. Just make sure you come a bit early so that the instructor has time to find the right size for you.

What can I expect from my first class?

Our basic course starts with a short warmup. After that, the instructor will show techniques and you will partner up to drill the techniques that the instructor taught.

At the end of the class there are a few rounds of positional sparring from the position that you were learning.

The sparring portion is optional. You can just watch until you are confident enough to give it a try.

Do you offer kids classes?

Yes. Please visit our kids page to learn more.

I enjoyed the trial classes and want to sign up. What do I have to do?

Talk to one of our instructors before or after training. You can also send us a message online if you prefer that instead.

I need a Gi. Where can I get one?

We sell Gis at a very reasonable price to our members. Send us a message if you want one.

Of course you don’t have to buy one from us, you can pick any brand that you like and order one online. If you are not sure about the size, ask someone in training that owns the same brand if you can try it on.

If you want to buy one in person, you can try the Budosport shop in Zurich. There is a discount code for BJJ Lab members (BUDO10).

Can I train in the advanced class?

You need to earn three stripes before you can attend the advanced classes. There is less supervision and we want to make sure that you can roll safely with others before you can join this class.

The techniques covered are also harder to learn than the fundamentals. You have to learn how to walk before you can run.

How often should I train?

Being consistent is the most important part. Train as often as you can fit comfortably into your schedule.

If you are starting out, try to complete our basic course first. With only two classes per week you can learn the curriculum in five weeks (Mon-Wed is the same class and then Thu-Sat). Of course you can also do each class multiple times and train as many times per week as you want.

If you miss a class, no problem. We have a video library where you can review what you missed.

The fundamentals curriculum has 3 classes per week (Mo/Tu, We/Thu, Fri/Sa). You can make sure you learn the whole curriculum if you come 3 times per week (or more).

How long does it take to earn a stripe?

That depends on how fast you learn and how much time you spend studying Jiu Jitsu. For white belts, it takes between 30 to 50 classes for the first stripe on average.

What belts are there in BJJ?

White, blue, purple, brown and black. You start every belt before black with zero stripes and progress to four. After the black belt, the stripes and other belts are based on time at black belt instead of skill.

How long does it take to earn a blue belt?

The road to blue belt is different for each person. For some very gifted people who train a lot it might only take 12 months. If someone only trains once or twice per week with long breaks in between in can take five years or longer. On average, it takes about 2 years to earn a blue belt if you train consistently.

Before you can earn your blue belt at the BJJ Lab you have to learn our fundamentals curriculum.

How long does it take to earn a black belt?

Usually somewhere around 10 years, give or take a few years.

It’s not who is good, it’s who is left. If you put in that time, natural athlete or not, you practice the art, you’ll be a Black Belt. You’re gonna be somewhere in ten years… Why not be a Black Belt too? You just can’t quit.
– Chris Haueter

Do I have to pay for stripe or belt promotions?

No, of course not. At the BJJ Lab promotions are earned and not bought.

What should I focus on as a white belt?

In the beginning you will most likely be very confused about what is going on. You don’t know the positions and how to move between them yet. Learn the basic positions and what your goal is from each position.

When you understand the basic positions, then you want to learn a few techniques from each position. You will learn everything that you need to know by attending first our basics and then our fundamentals classes.

How can I improve faster?

The more time that you spend studying Jiu Jitsu, the better you will become. The most important thing is time on the mats. Come to training as often as possible.

Watch instructional videos and competition videos. You will get most out of watching your own belt level and the belt level above yours.

Which instructional videos can you recommend?

We have a video library for our members with all the videos for our basics curriculum, our fundamentals and much more (filming for our gi and nogi advanced curriculums is a work in progress).