Last Updated on December 14, 2022
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) on the west coast is one of the best places in the world to go if you want to compete with some of the highest level competitors. In addition for being a location where they best of the best go to train, these schools also welcome BJJ practitioners of all levels so if you are someone that interested in trying BJJ for the first time or someone that wants to sharpen your skills for greater ambitions, you have come to the right place.
Even more specific than the west coast is San Diego, CA. This is a hotbed for some of the best Jiu-Jitsu in the world and some of the most well-known professors and ambassadors of the sport reside in San Diego.
Below is a list of some of the top academies in the area that has something to offer for everyone.
Barum Jiu-Jitsu San Diego
4903 Morena Blvd #1202
San Diego, CA 92117
Barum Jiu-Jitsu in San Diego is a part of the BJJ Revolution Team. They are a Carlson Gracie affiliate and offer training programs and techniques that are rewarding, professional and fun. You will always get the support you need if you are looking to compete and even if you are just looking to get in great shape.
The version of BJJ taught at Barum Jiu-Jitsu is a form of BJJ that inspires a winning attitude in the students that attend. Over time people and students that start at Barum will be champions on and off the mat in terms of success in competition and just being a better person. No matter the skill level or age of the student, Barum Jiu-Jitsu’s coaches are well trained, patient and are progressive in their style of teaching.
Alfredo Barum is the head instructor at Barum Jiu-Jitsu. He is a Rodrigo Medeiros black belt and opened the school with his wife Graziela Barum in 2009. Since then, they have continued to offer a high level of training to anyone who wishes to get it a shot.
Get a FREE week of training if you want to give it a shot. The team at Barum Jiu-Jitsu is looking forward to seeing you.
10th Planet San Diego Jiu Jitsu
6008 Mission Gorge Rd
San Diego, CA 92120
At 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu in San Diego, CA, you will have the opportunity to train with one of the top black belts in the world and avid competitor, Richie “Boogeyman” Martinez and Geo “Freakahzoid” Martinez. These two gentleman are some of the most well-known competitors in the world and are two of the top black belts to come out of Eddie Bravo’s 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu headquarters.
10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu is a no-gi, non traditional style of Jiu-Jitsu that was created by Eddie Bravo. It incorporates unusual positions, promotes flexibility all within a mindset that is geared towards attacking. No-gi Jiu-Jitsu is a great way to get in shape as well as a fundamental base for MMA. The style has been proven to aid those that fight in the cage and it can help you become a healthier person and able to protect yourself and loved ones if you need to.
From professional competitor to beginner, 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu in San Diego has something to offer everyone. The instruction from the coaches here is in a way that welcomes all students form any skill level and age and allows them to grow into their own style of Jiu-Jitsu while being creative at the same time.
At 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu in San Diego, they have some of the best coaches there is to offer teaching their students innovative and progressive techniques that are on the cutting edge of no only no-gi BJJ but Jiu-Jitsu as a whole. The classes taught here are filled with both advanced technical instruction for people that have been doing this for a while and fundamentals for the student that is just trying this out for the first time. Every position, transition and sequence is broken down so even the newest people to BJJ can grasp the concept.
With beginner, advanced and women’s classes, there is something for everyone at 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu in San Diego.
University of Jiu Jitsu
3350 Sports Arena Blvd., Suite H2
San Diego, CA 92110
The University of Jiu-Jitsu was founded in 2007 in San Diego, CA by the legendary Saulo and Xande Ribeiro. The two brothers are some of the most winning family members in Jiu-Jitsu and have won the World Championships and ADCC multiple times. In addition to being championship Jiu-Jitsu practitioners, they are also accomplished entrepreneurs, mentors and teachers for those that want to learn the gentle art.
The philosophy of training at the University of Jiu-Jitsu revolves around the Ribeiro System which teaches us of a code of how to survive in the world we know today with principles that have been unchanged. These are all represented on the six blades of the Ribeiro logo and they symbolize Family, Honor, Respect, Attitude, Discipline and Loyalty.
When you come train at “The U”, you are going to be stepping into a clean and fun environment that is fantastic for both kids and adults. The Kids’ Program was created for the parents that want to offer a respectful and positive atmosphere for everyone in the family. This program teaches the kids life skills, physical fitness, body control and skills to avoid being bullied. The team at “The U” provides educational support for the kids because academics is very important.
There is a lot of pride for hosting people from other countries as well, but what the University of Jiu-Jitsu is really proud of is that they have implemented and established successful programs for training local agencies like the U.S. Marine Corps, the U.S Navy SEALS, local correctional institutions and the San Diego Police Department. The goal is to help these people gain the skills and mindsets that will aid them when it is time to use these hand to hand combat skills.
So, whether you are new to this or are looking to sharpen your skills, The U is here to help.
Victory MMA & Fitness
3666 Midway Dr
San Diego, CA 92110
Victory MMA and Fitness has been one of the best gyms for group exercise and training in self-defense since 2007. There are no long term contracts or any fees to cancel so you can come in and pay for what you want. However, we suggest sticking around because the team at Victory MMA offer over 130 classes during the week that include Fitness, MMA, Boxing, Wrestling, Kickboxing, Boot Camp, Functional Fitness and CrossFit.
Those are just some of the classes that are offered but in addition to those, the Jiu-Jitsu program is one of the best in Southern Cal led by World Champion Dean “the Boogeyman” Lister. Lister and his team of world class black belts will help you achieve any goals that you are shooting for when you step on the mat. Whether you like it or not, you are going to gain self-confidence, a high level of fitness and skills to aid you in any self-defense situation. This goes for beginners and high level BJJ students looking to improve. There are eight BJJ classes every day of the week which include no-gi and gi classes on the weekends as well.
The owner of Victory MMA is Jocko Willink. He is a BJJ black belt as well as a 20 year veteran Navy SEAL. With his understanding of what it takes to be successful in life, he has brought in some of the best BJJ practitioners to help you meet all your fitness and self-defense goals. The coaches include the aforementioned Dean Lister who leads a team of coaches that combined with their unique personalities, distinctive techniques and teaching skills will offer you the best learning experience you could possibly hope for.
Alliance Jiu Jitsu San Diego
8990 Miramar Rd #225
San Diego, CA 92126
Alliance Jiu-Jitsu in San Diego is a top of the line Jiu-Jitsu academy in a city filled with capable Jiu-Jitsu schools. Their brand new facility will be a place where you can accomplish all of your goals while being part of a family friendly atmosphere that stresses the idea of “team”. The classes offered here will teach you positivity, to develop friendships, confidence and you will be part of a community atmosphere. Women, children and men are all welcome in this school and will benefit both physically and mentally from joining the team at Alliance Jiu-Jitsu. They are conveniently located right off Miramar Road.
The head instructor at Alliance is Johnny Faria. Faria is a 4th degree blackbelt and has been involved in BJJ for over 20 years. He has trained with some of the top athletes in the BJJ community and will pass on his knowledge to those that are willing to dedicate themselves to something greater than themselves.
His personal commitment and discipline for the art of BJJ is obvious and is classes are fantastic due to the excitement, discipline and high level of attention to detail. As a professor, Faria strives to bring the best out of his students. This is the case even as he is still active in the competition scene. Because of this, he is able to pass on current and innovative techniques on to his students. He has some high level achievements including being a 3 time IBJJF No-Gi World Champ, an IBJJF Pan American Champion and a 4 time IBJJF National Champion.
Clark Gracie Jiu Jitsu Academy
1162 Morena Blvd
San Diego, CA 92110
The Clark Gracie Jiu-Jitsu Academy will give you some of the best training in BJJ that you can possibly get and this goes for people just starting, to law enforcement and MMA fighters. This academy focuses on the team and not just the individual. There will be a high level of attention received here and this is because not everyone starts training in the Martial Arts for the same reason. Some people want to learn self-defense, some want to pursue a career in competition or MMA and some just want to get healthier. The goal is to teach you Jiu-Jitsu that will stay with you for the rest of your life. You will learn how to be comfortable in any self-defense situation. This includes being on your feet, on the ground or off your back with or without striking. You will also learn how to control a bad situation all while having a great time and meeting people that might end up being some of the best friends you could ever have.
The great thing about going here is that you are going to learn from the only member of the Gracie family that lives in San Diego in professor Clark Gracie. He is the grandson of the founder of BJJ; Carlos Gracie. Clark has one a plethora of championships and is well-known for his Omaplata submissions. Clark received his black belt from his father, Carley Gracie, who was also said to be the “Lion of the Gracie family.” Clark’s style, like his father, is based on leverage and position. You will be taught that even the smallest details can make all the difference in the techniques you are learning.
There are plenty of classes offered for all skill levels including classes for kids as well as fundamental, intermediate, advanced, submission grappling and drilling specific classes. This means you can get a little bit of everything at Clark Gracie Jiu-Jitsu Academy.
Atos Jiu-Jitsu HQ
4810 Mercury St
San Diego, CA 92111
Atos Jiu-Jitsu is led by Professor Andre Galvao. Galvao is a legend in Jiu-Jitsu and is a multiple time BJJ world champion. Even though there are many affiliates of Atos all around the world, you will get the opportunity to train under that man himself at Atos headquarters in San Diego. Galvao moved to San Diego so he could open his school and many high level BJJ athletes followed him there as he continued to help create multiple world champions in the BJJ scene. You will still see Professor Galvao standing at the top of the podium even though he is retired from competitive BJJ because his students have picked up where he has left off. Professor Galvao travels all over the world to give seminars where he shares his philosophies, techniques and motivation to all the people that are lucky enough to be around him. He is a father, a husband, a missionary and the leader of Atos Jiu-Jitsu.
Now that you know about the leader of Atos, it is important to know about the academy. The team of coaches and students at Atos take pride in the dedicated, knowledgeable and decorated team that they have. These people were hand picked by Professor Galvao because they are talented and they love to teach. Whether you are training for a hobby, fun, to get in better shape or looking to get involved in competitions, this academy has something for you.
You can try all of the classes at Atos Jiu-Jitsu for free over the course of a week. There are classes for kids, teens, women and men as well as the opportunity to have private lessons and self defense classes. The unique thing about Atos Jiu-Jitsu is that you are getting taught by world-class Jiu-Jitsu athletes in an atmosphere that is encouraging and friendly. You won’t regret giving them a shot.
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Fabio Santos
4616 Mission Gorge Pl
San Diego, CA 92120
The Fabio Santos’ Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Academy is known as one of the most renowned BJJ schools in the greater San Diego area. Fabio Santos has put all his dedication into passing on and preserving the integrity and quality of Jiu-Jitsu that he was taught to all of his students. This isn’t just lip service either because Professor Santos will be teaching every class that is offered at his academy so you know you will be learning from one of the best in the business all while being surrounded by a supportive team of coaches and students.
Just to give you an idea of some of the qualifications of Fabio Santos, we’ve got some to list right here. He is a Red and black belt in the Gracie family and he was trained by legends Rickson Gracie and Rolls Gracie. He is a certified instructor by the Federation of Jiu-Jitsu of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and has over 30 years of experience in teaching the art of BJJ. Not only does is Santos a great coach, he understands the human body as he has a degree in Physical Education. He is was a 1996 World Jiu-Jitsu Champion, 1996 Pan American Champion, 1999 Gameness Champion, 1999 Pan American Champion, 2000 World Jiu-Jitsu Champion, 2003 US Open Black Belt Masters Champion, 2004 United Gracie Black Belt Superfight Champion and the 2005 Black Belt Pro Am Superfight Champion.
Ribeiro Jiu-Jitsu La Mesa
8312 Lake Murray Blvd J
San Diego, CA 92119
Ribeiro Jiu-Jitsu in La Mesa is a place for all people. BJJ is changing the lives of people all over the world every day and the team at Ribeiro Jiu-Jitsu wants to share this exciting sport to all of the people that are willing to try. You may be doing it for fitness, health, self-defense, a hobby or to become a competition champion. Whatever your reason for training is going to come to fruition when training with this group of talented coaches.
The mission at Ribeiro Jiu-Jitsu in La Mesa is to empower the students with the training and knowledge that embodies what Ribeiro Jiu-Jitsu is all about. The goal is to feed the body as well as the spirit. The six blades of the logo symbolize Family, Respect, Loyalty, Discipline, Attitude and Honor and if you train with the guys here, you are going to be part of a family atmosphere that is friendly and ego free. You will build self confidence as well as learning how to defend yourself if you have to.
The head coach at Ribeiro La Mesa is Professor Julio Villanueva. He was born in San Diego and has stayed in the area to help others learn Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Villanueva has been teaching both adults and kids for many years and it brings him joy to see people grow physically and in spirit. Julio was awarded his black belt in BJJ by Saulo and Xande Ribeiro. He is a skilled competitor as well as a great teacher of this martial art. He has dedicated countless hours to developing his skills and is excited to pass it on. He is also a regular coach at University of Jiu-Jitsu as well as running the school in La Mesa.
Whether you are a kid, woman or man, Ribeiro La Mesa is a great choice for you.
Gracie Humaita Jiu Jitsu
5375 Kearny Villa Rd, 107B
San Diego, CA 92123
Gracie San Diego offers classes to learn about the art of Gracie Jiu-Jitsu. This art will empower all students with the tools necessary to be a great BJJ practitioner and an even better person. Regis Lebre is the head coach at Gracie San Diego. He trained under Eduardo Rocha, who is a 4th degree black belt under Royler Gracie, at Fortaleza-CE. Regis developed a desire and passion to learn more about BJJ and at the age of 20, he decided to pack up his stuff and move to Rio de Janeiro to learn from Master Royler Gracie and live in the place where Gracie Jiu-Jitsu was born. He ended up receiving his black belt from Master Royler Gracie at the age of 24 and came to the United States where he led a school in Philadelphia for 8 years.
San Diego was the final stop for this talented coach where he heads all the programs offered. These include classes for kids and adults. You will build confidence and the ability to defend yourself if the situation arises.