On 18 January 2021, the United Kingdom Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Association published results of a study into the effects of Covid-19 restrictions on BJJ athletes. Authored by UKBJJA Chairman Richard Martin, the study is the culmination of an extensive community survey alongside in-depth data gathering from the Elite Athlete programme, which has been running since June 2020.
As a close-contact sport, BJJ has faced tougher restrictions than most other grass-roots sport activities. Key findings of the report show a clear correlation between ongoing Covid-19 restrictions and negative physical and mental health outcomes amongst BJJ practitioners.
Richard Martin, the study author, said “This study proves how positive BJJ is for physical and mental health. Given the balance of risks to our community, I hope the government will allow a return to sport as soon as at risk groups have been vaccinated.”
Mike Williams, UKBJJA CEO, said: “Close contact sports have been largely forgotten during this pandemic. Whilst BJJ is still a relatively small sport, it is still worth an estimated £60 million per year to the UK economy – and many hundreds of livelihoods depend on it. We believe that, with the right risk mitigation strategies in place, it can be performed safely, with minimal risk to the wider community. Meanwhile, it is very important that the positive benefits of BJJ (and all grass-roots sports) on physical and mental health are central to the government’s strategy on easing lockdown restrictions.”
The full study can be accessed HERE
Richard Martin – UKBJJA Chairman and Report Author
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