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BJJ Weight Classes – All You Need to Know

As with most combat sports, BJJ competitors are separated by weight classes. Meaning, most of the time, you can expect to compete against people of a similar size to yourself.

People often say that every 20 lbs between you and your competitor is equal to one belt level. So while a purple belt and a blue belt may be at different levels in skill, if the blue belt has a 20lbs weight advantage, they are theoretically equal.

It’s not always true. Many competitors have fought at a high level and had success against fighters bigger than themselves. Indeed, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu was built to give smaller fighters the skill to take on much bigger opponents.

However, the lower you are in belt rank, the more likely weight will come into play for you (and your opponent).

This post will break down the different weight classes in competitive BJJ, and help you choose the right weight class for you to compete at. Keep in mind, different competitions may use different levels for their weight classes. But to make things simple, we’ll use official IBJJF standards.

BJJ Gi Weight Classes

IBJJF Gi weight classes are as follows. Measurements are INCLUDING fighting uniform, unless otherwise stated in your competition’s rules. Also, the weights referenced are maximum weight allowed.

Male Adult & Master

  • Rooster: 57.5 kg / 126.5 lbs
  • Light Feather: 64 kg / 141 lbs
  • Feather: 70 kg / 154 lbs
  • Light: 76 kg / 167.5 lbs
  • Middle: 82.3 kg / 181 lbs
  • Medium Heavy: 88.3 kg / 194.5 lbs
  • Heavy: 94.3 kg / 207.5 lbs
  • Super-Heavy: 100.5 kg / 221.0 lbs
  • Ultra Heavy: No limit

Male Juvenile

  • Rooster: 53.5 kg / 118 lbs
  • Light Feather: 58.5 kg / 129 lbs
  • Feather: 64 kg / 141 lbs
  • Light: 69 kg / 152 lbs
  • Middle: 74 kg / 163 lbs
  • Medium Heavy: 79.3 kg / 174.5 lbs
  • Heavy: 84.3 kg / 185.5 lbs
  • Super-Heavy: 89.3 kg / 196.5 lbs
  • Ultra Heavy: No limit

Female Adult & Master

  • Rooster: 48.5 kg / 107 lbs
  • Light Feather: 53.5 kg / 118 lbs
  • Feather: 58.5 kg / 129 lbs
  • Light: 64 kg / 141 lbs
  • Middle: 69 kg / 152 lbs
  • Medium Heavy: 74 kg / 163 lbs
  • Heavy: No limit

Female Juvenile

  • Rooster: 44.3 kg / 98 lbs
  • Light Feather: 48.3 kg / 106.5 lbs
  • Feather: 52.5 kg / 116 lbs
  • Light: 56.5 kg / 125 lbs
  • Middle: 60.5 kg / 133.5 lbs
  • Medium Heavy: 65 kg / 144 lbs
  • Heavy: No limit

BJJ No-Gi Weight Classes

Here are the weight divisions for No-Gi BJJ.

Keep in mind that No-Gi competitions are often more fluid in rulesets, so there is a higher than that the weight classes for a specific competition are different than what’s listed.

Male Adult & Master

  • Rooster: 55.5 kg / 122.5 lbs
  • Light Feather: 61.5 kg / 136 lbs
  • Feather: 67.5 kg / 149 lbs
  • Light: 73.5 kg / 162.5 lbs
  • Middle: 79.5 kg / 175.5 lbs
  • Medium Heavy: 85.5 kg / 188.5 lbs
  • Heavy: 91.5 kg / 202 lbs
  • Super-Heavy: 97.5 kg / 215 lbs
  • Ultra Heavy: No limit

Male Juvenile

  • Rooster: 51.5 kg / 114 lbs
  • Light Feather: 56.5 kg / 125 lbs
  • Feather: 61.5 kg / 136 lbs
  • Light: 66.5 kg / 147 lbs
  • Middle: 71.5 kg / 158 lbs
  • Medium Heavy: 76.5 kg / 169 lbs
  • Heavy: 81.5 kg / 180 lbs
  • Super-Heavy: 86.5 kg / 191 lbs
  • Ultra Heavy: No limit

Female Adult & Master

  • Rooster: 46.5 kg / 103 lbs
  • Light Feather: 51.5 kg / 114 lbs
  • Feather: 56.5 kg / 125 lbs
  • Light: 61.5 kg / 136 lbs
  • Middle: 66.5 kg / 147 lbs
  • Medium Heavy: 71.5 kg / 158 lbs
  • Heavy: 76.5 / 169 lbs
  • Super-Heavy: No limit

Female Juvenile

  • Rooster: 42.5 kg / 94 lbs
  • Light Feather: 46.5 kg / 103 lbs
  • Feather: 51.5 kg / 111.5 lbs
  • Light: 54.5 kg / 120.5 lbs
  • Middle: 58.5 kg / 129 lbs
  • Medium Heavy: 62.5 / 138 lbs
  • Heavy: 66.5 / 147 lbs
  • Super-Heavy: no limit

BJJ Weight Class FAQs

Make sure you know what goes on with weigh-ins and weight classes, to avoid missing out on the opportunity to compete. As always, double check with the individual rules of your tournament, as they may differ from the norm.

This will cover the most common practices around weight classes and weigh-ins.

When do you weigh in?

You weigh in before your first match – generally within 30 minutes.

How to weigh-ins work?

Your division (weight class and belt rank) will be called up to undergo weigh-in and uniform check.

Your uniform will need to pass IBJJF standards (or your competition’s rules), and you’ll need to be within the weight class you signed up for.

In most cases, following weigh-in you’ll head over to the fighter’s area, to wait for your first match.

What happens if you miss weight?

If you don’t meet the weight limit for your division, you won’t be able to compete in that bracket. The bracket will be adjusted, and generally a bye will be given to your first round opponent.

If you had already signed up to compete in the Absolute division, you will usually still be able to compete there.

Some competitions may allow you to fight at a higher weight class if you miss weight. Standard procedure is that you won’t be able to compete, though, so ensure you have checked and you are on weight well ahead of time.

What is the “Absolute” division?

Absolute is a separate bracket, in which fighters from all weight classes are invited to compete against others at the same belt rank.

Since there is no weight limit for Absolute, there is no need to weigh in. Often fighters will compete in their weight class and Absolute – others just their own weight class.

Choosing a Weight Class

When you first start competing, it can be tricky choosing the right weight class.

Almost always, you should choose a class close to your natural weight. Since BJJ does weigh-ins right before the fight, it’s not usually a good idea to cut a lot of weight, either by cutting water weight or starving yourself on the day.

You won’t have much of a chance to re-fuel after weighing in, so doing this will leave your performance below-par.

If you do decide to fight at a lower weight class than your natural weight, you should decide on this well in advance of your competition. This gives you the time to diet down and cut fat, instead of cutting water weight. It’s usually a good idea to be on weight the day before the competition, so you’re free to eat and drink a bit on the day.

The toughest decision can be for those stuck between two weight classes. For example, an adult male weighing 66 kg might be a little small for featherweight (70 kg), but will need to cut down to fight at light featherweight (64 kg).

If you’re in this situation, it comes down largely to preference. Most people will diet down in the leadup to the competition in order to meet the lower weight class. But if you’re not fazed about fighting slightly larger opponents, or your situation doesn’t allow you to prepare very much, you might just choose to stick to your natural weight.

There is no “wrong” answer to which weight class you decide to compete at. You just want to choose where you’re most comfortable. Your skill and effort is more likely to decide the fight than a few kilograms (or pounds).

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