BJJ Tattoos & Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Tattoo Ideas

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Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ) is not just a martial art, but a way of life. It’s no wonder that BJJ enthusiasts choose to express their passion for the art by tattoing their bodes. BJJ tattoos are not only a form of artistic expression, but they also serve as a permanent reminder of the discipline, determination, and resilience that is necessary to succeed on the mats and in the many challenges that life presents

In this article, we will explore different BJJ tattoo ideas that are popular among practitioners. From symbolic tattoos that represent the essence of BJJ, to quotes that inspire and motivate. There are endless possibilities for expressing your love for this martial art. 

Additionally, we will look at BJJ belt rank tattoos, a way to commemorate and celebrate one’s progress and achievements in the sport. Finally, we will explore creative placement ideas for BJJ tattoos, from the traditional locations to more unique and unexpected spots.

So, whether you’re a seasoned BJJ practitioner or simply admire the art, join us as we delve into the world of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu tattoos and discover the perfect BJJ tattoo idea for you.


BJJ Tattoo Inspiration

In the world of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, your journey is unique, and there are countless ways to express that journey and your passion for the sport through body art. Here are some popular BJJ tattoo ideas that might inspire you:

Symbolic BJJ Tattoos

Japanese Iconography

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is deeply rooted in the traditional martial arts of Japan. For this reason, many practitioners choose to include Japanese iconography in their ink, showing their pride and devotion to their art.

Quote inspired BJJ Tattoos

Quotes have the power to motivate and remind us of our goals, making them perfect for tattoo designs. One popular quote among BJJ practitioners is “The harder the battle, the sweeter the victory.” This quote captures the essence of the challenges faced in jiu jitsu and the satisfaction that comes with overcoming them. Another meaningful quote is “I may lose, but I will never be defeated.” This quote reflects the resilience and determination required in BJJ, emphasizing the importance of never giving up. “The gentle art” is also a commonly used phrase in BJJ, highlighting the technique and control needed to succeed. Whatever quote resonates with you, incorporating it into a BJJ tattoo can serve as a constant reminder of your passion and dedication to the sport. If you want to see some of our favorite quotes, click here.

Animal Motifs in BJJ Tattoos

Panda bear BJJ Tattoo

Animals can be a powerful source of inspiration when it comes to designing BJJ tattoos. They symbolize different qualities and characteristics that resonate with practitioners of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. For example, the lion is often associated with strength, courage, and leadership, making it a popular choice for BJJ enthusiasts. Other animals like the gorilla, panda, and monkey also have their own unique symbolism that can be incorporated into BJJ tattoos, allowing practitioners to express their connection with nature and their chosen martial art. For more ideas on animals to incorporate into your BJJ Tattoos, check out our article on BJJ Symbols

BJJ Belt Tattoos

Embodying the journey and achievements, BJJ belt rank tattoos showcase the dedication and progress of practitioners. In Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, belts symbolize the level of expertise and skill a practitioner has attained.  These tattoos serve as a permanent reminder of the hard work and commitment it takes to advance through the ranks. Some practitioners choose to include additional elements, such as their instructor’s name or the date they received their belt. BJJ belt rank tattoos are not only a way to proudly display one’s accomplishments, but also a source of motivation to continue pushing forward in the martial art.

Where Should I Put My Tattoo?

Try placing your BJJ belt rank tattoo on your forearm, where it can be prominently displayed and serve as a constant reminder of your dedication and progress in the martial art. This placement allows you to showcase your achievements whenever you roll or compete. Another creative idea is to place a BJJ tattoo on your back, specifically on the shoulder blades or upper back area. This placement can symbolize the strength and power that comes with mastering Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. For a more subtle option, consider getting a small BJJ tattoo on your ankle or wrist. This placement allows you to keep your love for the sport close to you at all times, while still being easily concealable if necessary. Another consideration is weather or not you want your tattoos to be visible. Make sure you have a properly fitting gi, if you want to conceal your ink. Ultimately, the placement of your BJJ tattoo is a personal choice that should reflect your passion and commitment to the art.

Tips and advice for getting a tattoo

A tattoo artist working in a studio

In this section, I will provide tips and advice based on my experiences and knowledge, guiding you through the process of getting a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu tattoo. From preliminary considerations to post-tattoo care and how it might affect your training, we’ll cover everything you need to know to make this journey a rewarding one.

Pre-Work considerations

Placement and Size

When considering a BJJ tattoo, it’s important to think about its placement and size. Both can significantly impact the tattoo’s visibility, the amount of detail you can incorporate, and even the level of discomfort you might experience during the tattooing process. Do you want a large, detailed depiction of your black belt on your back? Or perhaps a small, symbolic representation on your ankle? These decisions will largely depend on personal preference and pain tolerance.

Finding a Reputable Artist

Finding a reputable tattoo artist is crucial. This involves doing your research, checking out their portfolios, reading reviews, and even visiting their studio to ensure it adheres to all hygiene and safety regulations. The right artist will not only bring your BJJ tattoo idea to life but also provide a safe, comfortable, and professional environment.

The best way to find a reputable artist is to look for references from people you know and trust. First-hand experience is always the best window into an artist’s capabilites.

The Healing Process and How It Can Affect Training

Man with tattoos

How Long to Take Off From Training

One crucial factor many BJJ practitioners fail to consider is how the tattoo healing process can affect training. Generally, you’ll need to avoid strenuous physical activities, including BJJ training, for at least a week or two after getting a tattoo. This allows your skin to heal properly and helps to prevent any damage to the tattoo. This downtime can vary based on the tattoo’s size and placement, as well as your body’s healing rate.

Aftercare Tips

Proper aftercare is essential for a new tattoo. This includes keeping the tattoo clean and moisturized, avoiding sun exposure, and refraining from picking at any scabs that form. It’s also a good idea to wear loose, comfortable clothing that won’t rub against the tattoo during the initial healing period. A well-cared-for tattoo will retain its vibrancy and sharpness, symbolizing your BJJ journey in the best possible way.

Wrap Up

In conclusion, a BJJ tattoo is a meaningful way to commemorate your journey and passion for Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Your body is the only one you will ever get. If you are apprehensive about getting a tattoo, there are other ways you can transform your body to honor it. 

By carefully considering your decision to get a tattoo, the placement and size, and following the necessary aftercare procedures, you can ensure your BJJ tattoo looks great and remains a proud symbol of your martial arts journey for years to come.


Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu tattoos hold a unique place at the intersection of BJJ culture and the art of tattooing. The symbols, designs, and meanings behind these tattoos not only express the individual’s love and dedication to the sport but also their personal journey within it. The ink on the skin of BJJ practitioners is not merely about aesthetics; it serves as a powerful testament to their perseverance, discipline, and passion for the martial art.

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