The purple belt in Jiu-Jitsu is a symbol of the dedicated practitioner. Some say that this is the belt that takes the longest to reach. When you achieve this rank you are becoming an expert in the art. It is considered to be a professional belt. You may not be a brown or black belt yet, but you know what they know.
From the time you started your journey as a blue belt, you begin to learn and acquire many techniques. Your defensive and offensive techniques and knowledge start to grow and evolve. Toward the end of your blue belt days to the beginning of purple, your Jiu-Jitsu becomes more fluid and efficient. Fluid in your transitions between technique and positions, everything starts to click and is second nature to you. Your gas tank lasts a lot longer during training and you don’t waste movement in favor reaching a position or submission.
Your Jiu-Jitsu game becomes more profound at the purple belt level. Even with the amount of techniques you amassed at blue, as a purple belt you start to use certain ones more than often. A lot of those moves turn into other moves (i.e. omoplata, triangle to armbar). The techniques and positions you favor become related in a way that suits you. This is your style, your game.
As you begin to fill in the gaps, the road to brown and black belt becomes closer. At purple belt you will use what is useful to you without disregarding other techniques as they may become useful later on or at times when everything else isn’t working. This is the stage of refinement in your Jiu-Jitsu and where you sharpen your tools. This is where you become a well-rounded practitioner.
Your offense is more effective at purple belt. The ability to pass any guard becomes more dynamic and your top game starts to flourish. Your become more dangerous off of your back as guard game also gets better. Your defense is more impenetrable as well. In some cases you may use your defense to create an offensive counter. Like everyone else you will hit some plateaus, but you will only get better from here.
Reaching the rank of purple belt not only shows your dedication to the art, but it also represents your own personal growth. You are now a well-rounded practitioner, an expert. Your ability to execute techniques and troubleshoot expands as your journey continues.
It is no wonder why some of the best and most exciting matches in the largest competitions are from the purple belt divisions…
By: Vincent Inoncillo