Your cart
Total: $0.00
Lifetime Video Access Lifetime
Video Access
Downloadable
videos
30 Days Money Back Guarantee

BJJ Instructional Videos
John Danaher Leglocks
John Danaher Back Attacks BJJ
Down
Half Guard BJJ Instructional Video
How to Wash a BJJ Belt
articles/unnamed_29.jpg

How to Wash a BJJ Belt

,

Washing your bjj belts is one of the most important facets of hygiene involved in Martial Arts. There are a multitude of risks involved if a student does not wash their belt after training. Students can open the door to many infections that could directly threaten the health and safety of their academy members.

The art of washing the belt is not the only thing you need to know.  Fill in the gaps with Bernardo Faria's Foundations of BJJ!

do you wash bjj belt

Students are required to take care of their own hygiene, which includes washing themselves before and after training, keeping their fingers and toenails short and washing their Gi and their belt. Most practitioners are extremely vigilant when it comes to all degrees of cleanliness. Most academies are highly critical of their students when it comes to their hygiene, and for good reason. If an infection spreads through an academy it can cause major health concerns, and has the potential to close down a business.

What This Article Covers:

ARE YOU A BJJ FANATICS INSIDER? IF NOT, YOU’RE MISSING OUT!

Take a deep dive on one specific skill per month with the top instructors in the BJJ Fanatics family.

With your subscription you’ll get:

  • Private Lesson (Masterclass)
  • Preview of our Upcoming Daily Deals to better plan your purchases
  • Rolling breakdowns & more.

You’ll also get At Home Drills to work on, a Preview of our Upcoming Launches More!

FREE FOR 7 DAYS TRIAL

Learn More

WHY SHOULD A BELT BE WASHED

There are several reasons why a belt needs to be washed, and BJJ practitioners should take these reasons extremely seriously. A BJJ belt will continuously come into contact with foreign bacteria that lays dormant in a gym. There are vast amounts of dirt and dust that circles around an academy at all times. 

There is also an accumulation of sweat that gathers on top of Jiu Jitsu mats, which can transfer bacteria to a student. Sweat will also be soaked into the Gi and the belt, making it a bacteria harbouring vessel that needs to be cleaned regularly. The design of the belt also makes for an easy bacteria trap, as the sewn in ridges on a belt will catch an abundance of germs. Practitioners must be extra careful and take regular visits to their laundry.

Washing a BJJ belt is one of the most important aspects of Jiu Jitsu, it goes far beyond the simple bjj belt meanings. Keeping a healthy body is all about the proper precautions taken, like honouring the code of hygiene. So if you're in Jiu Jitsu for the long haul then wash your belt and help stop the spread of dangerous infections.

WHAT ARE THE RISKS OF AN UNWASHED BELT

There are some serious repercussions involved with practitioners not washing their BJJ belts. It is extremely important to follow the guidelines set by an academy, as the ramifications can be disastrous. Learning how to become a Black belt in bjj isn't just about how skillful a student is, it is also about their integrity and intelligence. A smart practitioner will always understand the dangers in a Martial Art, so when it comes to infection risk, they must follow the guidelines.

Let's have a look at some of the risks involved with not washing a BJJ belt.

STAPH INFECTIONS

A staph infection can be extremely dangerous, as it is an infection caused by bacteria. The infection can result in serious illness and even death in rare cases. The infection will often have symptoms like boils and oozing blisters, and if not treated immediately can become extremely deadly. Staph is highly contagious as any direct contact with another person will often result in transmission of the infection. Staph infections can turn deadly rather quickly if the bacteria invades deeper into the body or enters the bloodstream, which can cause significant health issues. Many BJJ practitioners have been sidelined due to the horrible nature of a staph infection. 

RINGWORM

Ringworm is a highly contagious fungal infection that can plague the skin of a practitioner. The infection is another condition that can be passed from skin to skin. Ringworm is a red and scaly irritation that can cause bald patches, itches and pain. Although ringworm is not fatal it can be an annoying infection that can spread quickly through a Martial Arts camp. Any sort of infection is not a good look to the members, so keeping good cleaning practices is highly important.

INTERTRIGO 

Intertrigo is a condition known as sweat rash, which is an inflammation of the skin. This commonly occurs when the skin is moistened and has been exposed to friction. Sweat rash will commonly appear in areas where the skin rubs together, and usually where there is less air circulation. This happens in places like under the armpits, in the groin area, and between abdominal skin folds. Sweat rash can become infected by fungi called candida and even though it is not a direct result of an unwashed belt, it can still be a problem in a high intensity Martial Art like BJJ.

BODILY WASTE 

If a student does not wash their belt it will often carry various human wastes. A common occurrence is the belt will hold dead skin, sweat and other bodily waste, which is one of the leading causes of bacteria. In Jiu Jitsu there is a lot of close contact, so an unwashed belt can result in an exchange of bacteria from student to student. Keeping a stringent dedication to eradicating any waste material is very important.

Nobody who trains at a BJJ academy wants to take time off of training, especially due to catching some sort of infection. Although sometimes infections are unavoidable, in the case of not washing your belt, it is inexcusable and definitely should not happen. Practitioners should also make sure that they shower before and after training, so they minimise the bacteria they are bringing on the mats.

Quite often the biggest culprits are the beginners, as they are unaware of the consequences of their inactions. There are many bjj White belt goals a beginner will implement like; winning competitions, submitting higher belts and learning how to tie Jiu Jitsu belt but what is commonly missed by the beginner is making sure their belts and Gi's are washed. This kind of information needs to be conveyed to White belts from the start of their journey.

Along with the aspect of keeping a belt and Gi clean and free from bacteria, the mats can also be a cesspool of spawning bacteria. All BJJ schools have a priority to diligently clean their mats with cleaning products after every training session. Due to the ongoing Covid 19 pandemic, most schools will clean their mats periodically throughout the day, especially when they have sessions that run all day. Keeping a clean gym and clean gear is a great habit to keep and will ensure everyone will stay safe from infections.

ARE YOU A BJJ FANATICS INSIDER? IF NOT, YOU’RE MISSING OUT!

Take a deep dive on one specific skill per month with the top instructors in the BJJ Fanatics family.

With your subscription you’ll get:

  • Private Lesson (Masterclass)
  • Preview of our Upcoming Daily Deals to better plan your purchases
  • Rolling breakdowns & more.

You’ll also get At Home Drills to work on, a Preview of our Upcoming Launches More!

FREE FOR 7 DAYS TRIAL

Learn More

WHY SOME STUDENTS DON'T WASH THEIR BELTS

There are a couple of reasons why students don't wash their belts. The first reason is because some practitioners believe that if you wash your belt, then you will wash the mojo right out of the belt. Obviously this is a ridiculous notion as a practitioner's skills do not exist within their belt. This belief is just pure superstition and has no bearing on the actual reality.

The second reason stems from an old myth that originated from Japan. In traditional Japanese Martial Arts it is said that they never wash their belts from their beginning as a white belt, instead they allow the blood, sweat and dirt to stain their belt over years. The thought of a Martial Artist wearing a belt that has turned Black after a decade of training is grotesque, unhygienic and utterly incomprehensible. There is a reason why certain things are called myths, but nothing can beat a good story.

HOW TO WASH YOUR BELT

Washing a Jiu Jitsu belt is extremely easy, as it is as simple as putting in the washing machine. All practitioners wash their Gi's because of the hygiene elements attached. White belts can be unaware of the need to wash a belt, but from Blue to Purple belt bjj practitioners and beyond are extremely vigilant about washing their belts. 

Some practitioners are a little weary about putting their belt in the washing machine, as it can wear and tear more easily. Another option would be to soak your belt in hot water with some form of antiseptic or fabric cleaner. If soaking a belt is more of your cup of tea, then be sure to do it thoroughly so you can avoid any type of bacteria living inside your belt.

Of course washing the belt is a must, but a good alternative to washing your belt if you don't have the means to wash it, is to leave it out in the sun. The sun will be sure to kill the bacteria before it has a chance to manifest deep within the crevices of your belt. It is also a good idea to keep some antiseptic spray or fabric foam in your gym bag, so you can give your gear a spray after training. This is a good option to help stop the spread of bacteria at least until you can wash your gear properly. 

Learn the Foundations of BJJ from 5X World Champ Bernardo Faria and BJJ Fanatics!

should you wash your bjj belt

It is always a good idea to hang your Gi and belt out immediately after washing. Air drying is the best option to keep bacteria from forming. Generally you want to hang it away from direct sunlight so your gear doesn't fade, but if you do hang it in the sun it is another good way to halt any sort of bacteria growing inside your belt. 

Just remember the importance of washing your belt, and be sure to follow the philosophy of keeping infections out of the gym.

ARE YOU A BJJ FANATICS INSIDER? IF NOT, YOU’RE MISSING OUT!

Take a deep dive on one specific skill per month with the top instructors in the BJJ Fanatics family.

With your subscription you’ll get:

  • Private Lesson (Masterclass)
  • Preview of our Upcoming Daily Deals to better plan your purchases
  • Rolling breakdowns & more.

You’ll also get At Home Drills to work on, a Preview of our Upcoming Launches More!

FREE FOR 7 DAYS TRIAL

Learn More

How to Wash BJJ Belt with Stripes

Preserving the quality and appearance of a BJJ belt, especially one adorned with stripes, is essential to many martial artists. These stripes aren’t just decorative; they’re a testament to skills honed and milestones achieved. When it comes to washing a BJJ belt with stripes, extra caution is paramount. Initiate the process by hand washing to give you control over the pressure and attention each section of the belt receives. A mixture of cold water and mild detergent is most suitable to retain the belt's color and structural integrity.

While washing, pay close attention to the areas around the stripes. Use a soft-bristle brush or cloth and gently clean to avoid damaging or peeling the stripes off. Rinsing should be done thoroughly but gently, ensuring all detergent is washed off but without the harshness that could compromise the stripes' adherence to the belt.

The drying process is another crucial stage in maintaining the condition of a BJJ belt with stripes. Avoid wringing the belt as this can damage the fabric and the adhesive of the stripes. Instead, lay it flat in an area with ample airflow but out of direct sunlight. This prevents the fading of the belt’s color and ensures that the stripes remain firmly attached. Keeping these detailed steps in mind when washing your BJJ belt ensures it remains a lasting symbol of your skill, dedication, and accomplishments in the sport. Each stripe should be treated as a chapter of your BJJ journey, deserving of the utmost care and preservation.

If you enjoyed this piece, consider checking:

Half Domination by Tom DeBlass DVD Cover
Catch Wrestling Formula by Neil Melanson
Butterfly Guard Re-Discovered Adam Wardzinski DVD Wrap
Judo Academy Jimmy Pedro Travis Stevens