bjj black belt

How Many BJJ Black & Red Belts Are There? (2023)

How many Brazilian jiu-jitsu (BJJ) black belts are there in the world?

By the time of editing this article (2023 February), there are around 7785 registered black belts in the world, according to International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation.

You can check the current number from their website. https://ibjjf.com/certified-black-belts

The real number of black belts is estimated to be as high as 10 times the registered amount, meaning around 1 out of 10 black belts are registered in the IBJJF database. That would mean over 70 000 Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belts in the world.

How many BJJ coral belts are there in the world?

The seventh degree of black belt including red and black, also known as the coral belt is a very rare belt due to the requirements it takes to achieve. There are currently 49 registered 7th-degree black belts in the world.

Also, the 8th degree is referred to as the coral belt. It includes red and white colors. There are 22 registered 8th-degree black belts in the world, according to the IBJJF database.

In total, 7th and 8th-degree belts make up 71 coral belts by the time of writing this article.

How many red belts are there in the world?

As we continue from the black belt to the coral belt and all the way to the red belt, the number of holders becomes smaller.

The 9th degree, which is a red belt, currently has 22 holders. The 10th and final degree of the red belt has 5 holders, making the grand total of red belts in the world 24.

There are no living 10th-degree red belts. All the 10th-degree red belts were pioneers of Brazilian jiu-jitsu. They are still included in the calculations and shown in the IBJJF database.

How long does it take to get a black belt in BJJ?

On average, achieving a black belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu takes around 2200 hours of training. Training BJJ for 4 hours per week, would take approximately 11 years to get a black belt.

It is a common saying that it takes around 10 years of active BJJ training to get a black belt. It of course all depends on how fast you can learn. Some people have achieved black belts in less than 5 years, but to do that, requires some serious dedication and is very uncommon.

More about how long to get each belt in BJJ in this post.

BJJ black belt stripe system

Like other belts in Brazilian jiu-jitsu, the black belt also has a stripe system. Stripes mean the degree of the black belt you currently hold, from 0 all the way up to 10.

Degrees from 0 to 6 are black belts. When ascending to the 7th degree, the belt turns to coral, and at the 9th degree, the color turns red.

BJJ black belt requirements

To become a black belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu, IBJJF requires the student to be at least 19 years old and have to spend a minimum of 1 year as a brown belt.

Being a black belt in BJJ requires you to be an expert in the sport. Being able to teach and coach others, being a professor of martial art. Black belts are not given freely. They have to be earned through hard work and dedication.

Final thoughts

So, as you can see, there are a lot of black belts, a few coral belts, and very few red belts. Achieving a black belt, even though it is not so uncommon anymore, is still a very nice achievement. Getting a black belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu takes a lot of time and effort.

You can see the current number of belts from the IBJJF database. Although it is estimated that a tiny portion of black belts is registered, it gives some image of how the number is progressing.

Other BJJ-related posts can be found here.

Hopefully, this was helpful to you, have a nice day!


What is Brazilian jiu-jitsu?

Brazilian jiu-jitsu is a martial art that focuses on ground fighting. This means it focuses on taking the fight to the ground and finishing the fight with joint locks or chokeholds. Brazilian jiu-jitsu was developed around 1920’s, and was modified from judo. Nowadays, Brazilian jiu-jitsu is an essential martial art for MMA.

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