Review: The 32 Principles of Jiujitsu (UPDATE)

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Gracie University and BJJ Fanatics have teamed up to expand the reach of this product across the BJJ community.

This is a great development for instructors and students.

Once we begin using the principles to instruct and learn I would be interested in hearing your feedback.

Is there something still missing?

If so, what is it?

What are the main problems you still encounter?

How can we shape our learning and practice to make absorption better?

BJJ Fanatics released a “mini masterclass” on the principles you can watch here.

Bottom Line Up Front (BLUF)


  • Uniquely focused product on the principles that thread together the efficiency of Jiujitsu techniques.
  • Thorough, high quality videos with on-screen focus cues for emphasizing the principle.
  • High energy instruction.
  • Structured methodology for introducing into your training curriculum.
  • Recommended for all practitioner levels.
  • Fair price point for the value received.


  • 32 principles – where did this number come from? Why 32? Not fully explained.
  • High energy instruction…the Renergy is palpable!

Product Description

The 32 Principles of Jiujitsu is the latest Gracie University product from Rener and Ryron Gracie.

They are positioning this product as a uniquely different, but complementary, offering than traditional, technique-based instructionals.

For the current price of $79, you get Part 1 which includes Principles 1-8. (Note: there may be introductory offerings, or other marketing efforts such as bundled purchases that may change the price).

Here is a breakdown of what is included for the purchase of the first 8 principles:

  • Over 6 hours of total video instruction
    • An intro class
    • Mini-Masterclass on Principle-based learning
    • Principle 1: Connection
    • Principle 2: Detachment
    • Principle 3: Distance
    • Principle 4: Pyramid
    • Principle 5: Creation
    • Principle 6: Acceptance
    • Principle 7: Velocity
    • Principle 8: Clock
    • An outro class
  • A 20-page presentation-formatted (pdf) download

Within each lesson there is a “notes”, “forum”, and “workbook” option.

The notes are personalized for your own use during instruction.

The forum is for Q&A on the lesson.

The workbook is another download that provides details suggesting how best to absorb and implement the lesson.

Target Audience

The material is presented for all Jiujitsu practitioners, not just Gracie University students.

In fact, many Jiujitsu practitioners have provided endorsements of the product prior to the “go-live” of the product launch. (Note: It is not known whether these practitioners were paid for their endorsement or not, but that’s business).

There is an attempt to align the Principles to existing Gracie technique instructionals.

For example, the Connection Principle (Principle 1) is aligned to Guard stages 1-4 (Gracie Combatives Lessons 8), Open Guard Arm Drag (Blue Belt Stripe 3 Lessons 1), and Mount Control (Gracie Combatives Lesson 3), among others.

This may only make sense to existing Gracie University or Gracie Certified Training Center practitioners.

Program Summary: The “Good”, “Bad”, & “Ugly”

The Good”

High Quality content. Overall, the material is high-quality video and thorough instruction. Video illustrations using color-guidance (e.g., the yellow highlighted areas) provide the student to focus on the correlation to the lesson being taught. The pictures below correlate to several of the lessons and are owned by Gracie University.

Principle 1: Connection
Principle 2: Detachment
Principle 3: Distance
Principle 4: Pyramid

As a Jiujitsu brown belt practitioner and instructor, I have always recognized there is a common thread to the techniques that should apply to them all.

This is one of the first attempts, through instructional video, that I have seen an attempt to identify principles that can be explored across the technique arsenal. That makes the potential for this product to have a major impact on how we learn, train, and teach in the future.

Instruction style. I appreciate the use of metaphors in teaching, and Rener and Ryron are at no loss for using them. They use bank accounts, trees, gold bars, and many other examples to get their points across.

Technology. Video playback is also recalled by device. Some of the lessons are long, and my ADD would kick in and I’d need a break. When I returned to the lesson, it was right where I left it.

Price to Value. As an instructor, I think the price is fair for the amount and quality instruction and content that is provided. Part of my assessment involved the instruction style (which I like), the amount of content (over 6 hours), downloads and interactive capabilities of the platform.

As a student on a budget, your may not have the same value to price ratio that I do. From my perspective, having the principles to learn in addition to any technique-specific instructionals should open up the aperture on your ability to abosorb the Jiujitsu. This is very much a “pilot” phase concept as most schools, academies, and instructionals are technique-based so only time will tell how much value practitioners are getting.

The “Bad”

Instruction style. I know I mentioned this in the “Good”, but this is a coin flip. For some of my peers (who have expressed their opinions), they do not appreciate the level of “enthusiasm” that Rener brings. It feels like a “car salesman” and inauthentic.

I think this is all a matter of preference. Being in an industry requiring that I sell products and services, I have often received similar comparisons.

There is no universal instructor that will satisfy all individual learning preferences. That is the reason there are so many different instructionals for the same positions, strategies, and techniques.

We all like to learn from different styles and individuals that resonate with us.

Why 32? It is not clear if 32 has some significance. It is difficult to discern whether there is any redundancy across the principles in order to make the “letters of the alphabet” more marketing friendly or meaningful. For example, Kuzushi, Momentum, Connection, and Creation, on the surface “could” have similarities.

In my review of the first 8, there is enough disparity between the Connection principle, and the Creation principle to understand the nuances.

I will reserve my assessment of the next 8 to see if there is cross-over, redundancy, or if it is really complementary, OR if there are more than 32 principles.

The “Ugly”

There is nothing “ugly” about this product to share. If you disagree, comment below or send me a message.


Products can be Strongly recommended, Potentially recommended, or Not recommended.

I strongly recommend this content for Jiujitsu instructors as a complement to current knowledge-base. It can be incorporated into any curriculum and provide a new way to introduce the principles with a body of techniques to make new in-roads to student success.

I make a potential recommendation to the Jiujitsu student/general practitioner, mainly due to the restrictions on most practitioners (i.e., limited income, other training needs like equipment, food, etc.). However if you have disposable income, you should consider this an option to add to your instructional library.

Thanks and comment below if you have any questions, thoughts, or would like to see any other reviews!

You can get this product at the Gracie University website.

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