How Long Does It Take To Get A Black Belt In BJJ?

How Long Does It Take To Get A Black Belt In BJJ

Those that are curious about taking up Jiu Jitsu training often ask the same question. How long does it take to get a black belt in BJJ?

How Long Does it Take to Get a Black Belt in BJJ?

Let’s go ahead and answer the question of how long does it take to get a black belt in BJJ. On average, a hobbyist level BJJ student can expect to get a black belt in BJJ in 8-10 years.

Although this is the average time it takes to get a BJJ black belt, it isn’t a fixed time frame. You could earn a BJJ black belt in a shorter or longer time frame depending on various factors.

How Long is the Stay at Each Belt Rank?

To give you a better idea of the time it takes to get a black belt, let’s break down each rank. Here is the average time BJJ students stay at the lower ranks in Jiu Jitsu.

White Belt

On average, it will take a new white belt student around a year to earn their BJJ blue belt. This is the shortest time out of all the lower ranks in BJJ.

In order to earn a blue belt within a year is to just show up to class. As long as you do that, you will earn a blue belt.

Blue Belt

At the blue belt rank is where many Jiu Jitsu students end up quitting. Things get a little harder and expectations get higher, which leads many to give up.

The wait to get your purple belt is also twice as long as the time it takes to earn a BJJ purple belt. An average blue belt student will have to wait between 2-3 years to earn their purple belt.

It’s a tough period, but one you have to endure in order to reach the black belt level.

Purple Belt

When you get to the purple belt rank, you will most likely be there for another 2-3 years. Many BJJ professors believe that the purple belt rank is the most difficult rank in the martial art.

You’re right in the middle of the colored ranks. A purple belt possesses the abilities of a high rank student, but lacking in other areas.

Once they become more proficient in the areas they’re lacking, they will progress to the brown belt rank.

Brown Belt

The BJJ brown belt is the last step before reaching the rank of black belt. Many see a brown belt as an unpolished black belt.

They have the ability of a black belt, but need to clean up their game to prove they’re a black belt. A brown belt student can expect to wait another 1-2 years to earn their black belt.

Once you earn your black belt, this puts you at around 8-10 years of consistent training.

What Can I Do to Get a BJJ Black Belt Faster? 

There’s another commonly asked question BJJ students ask along with how long does it take to get a BJJ black belt. They also want to know how they can get their black belt in a faster time frame. Here are the factors that could help you earn a BJJ black belt in a faster time period.

Black Belt BJJ
Black Belts

Background in Another Form of Grappling

If you’re going into BJJ training with an extensive background in another grappling art or balancing weight training and Brazilian jiu jitsu, this will definitely help you. Most BJJ students with an extensive background in wrestling or Judo get their black belts in a shorter time frame.

This is because wrestlers and Judokas are already proficient in facets of the Jiu Jitsu game. Once they become proficient in facets of Jiu Jitsu like submission and submission defense, they become very hard to deal with.

Also in BJJ, the general rule for Judo black belts that begin training is that they don’t start at white belt. Once they begin training and the BJJ instructor sees their skill level, they’ll often be promoted to blue belt or higher.

Olympian Judoka Travis Stevens earned his BJJ black belt from John Danaher in just 18 months. Danaher saw that Stevens grappling skills were well above an average student, which led to the promotion.

Black Belt BJJ 1

Dedicated to Training

If you’re dead set on earning your BJJ black belt in a faster time period, it will take immense dedication. Earning a black belt in 8-10 years generally means a person trains on average 3-4 times per week.

But if you’re really dedicated to your training, you can get it in a shorter time period. To earn your black belt in BJJ in a shorter timespan, you’ll need to train everyday, multiple times per day.

Having complete dedication to the martial art will help you improve your skill faster and make you a better grappler. You could definitely earn a black belt in BJJ in about five years if you have this type of dedication.

Competing Regularly

Not only being dedicated to training, but also competing regularly can play a factor in you getting a black belt faster. It is a proven fact that competing regularly will improve your abilities faster than just training.

In competition, you’re forced to test your skills by going 100% against other opponents. Being put in the fire so to speak will force you to improve your abilities at a faster rate than a normal student.

Help Around the Academy

If you want to show your instructor that you’re dedicated to Jiu Jitsu, you can offer to help around the academy. Offer to do anything from cleaning the mats, helping assist in teaching classes or be a substitute teacher.

Being selfless shows your instructor that you love Jiu Jitsu and want to help others. These are important qualities they look for when they’re deciding on promoting their students.

Natural Talent

There’s also another factor that very few people are gifted with and that is having a natural talent for Jiu Jitsu. Sometimes, there are just students that are uncommon outliers that develop their skills faster than a normal BJJ student.

BJJ athletes like Nick Rodriguez and Caio Terra became elite level grapplers in a very short time span. They grasped the concepts of Jiu Jitsu at a faster rate than most and were able to become champions.

Grapplers like this have a special gift that you can’t teach, while allowing them to become some of the world’s best grapplers.

Black Belt BJJ 2
BJJ Black Belt

What Factors Will Make Me Wait Longer to Get a Black Belt in BJJ? 

There are factors that can help you get a black belt quicker and definitely things that will make you wait longer. Here are the negative factors that will make you wait longer to get a black belt in BJJ.

Not Training Regularly 

The biggest factor that will make you wait longer to get a black belt in BJJ is not training regularly. Those that want to earn a Jiu Jitsu black belt will make time every week for their training.

Then there are those students that aren’t as dedicated to training. They’ll train a few times a month or go AWOL for months on end and return to the mats.

Never really improving and just going through the motions. If this is you, then don’t expect to earn a black belt anytime soon. You’re going to be waiting a while for that promotion.

According to Zack Nicholas of, it can be beneficial to balance weight training with your Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu when you do your Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Strength Training.


Injuries are a part of Jiu Jitsu training and the major ones can take you off the mat. When this happens, it will unfortunately prolong your wait to earn your black belt. It sucks, but you’ll just have to deal with it and get back on the mat when you can.

Should You Really Worry About How Long It Takes to Get a Black Belt in BJJ?

In all honesty, no, you shouldn’t worry about how long it will take to get a black belt in BJJ. If you’re really passionate about Jiu Jitsu, you’re not worrying about when you’re getting a black belt.

What you really should be focused on is training regularly and improving your technique. If you focus on those things, then you will deservingly earn the rank of BJJ black belt.