Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ) has exploded in popularity over recent years and as a result, there are multiple gyms in almost every city. However, which BJJ gyms stand out from them all?

This post takes into consideration every gym’s head coach and instructors, notable students/training partners and their reputation among the BJJ competitive community and their reviews. Having world class instructors and being surrounded by good training partners is important for your BJJ skill development and will really allow you to make the most of each training session. On the other hand, training somewhere that is entirely focused on making business rather than on every student’s development is counter productive and you will be wasting your money and time. 

Ranking Factors

Head coach and instructors 

It all starts from the top. A gym with proper, reputable instructors and a learning syllabus means that you learn techniques correctly from the start at a quicker rate. Out of the three ranking factors, this is the most important

Notable Students/Training Partners

This also relates to head coaches and instructors as their qualities tend to set the environment inside the gym which will attract and keep certain people. Having access to high level and good training partners is important and will accelerate development. You don’t want to be the big fish in a small gym as it will limit your learning progress and cause you to have an inflated view of your current skillset which will be exposed in competition. Having hard rounds at the gym is crucial for anyone of any level.


A gym’s reputation online and in competition is concrete proof of whether the gym is good or not. If the gym has constant active competitors with a high win ratio, this would mean that whatever their approach is, is working. On the other hand, if the gym has a bad reputation, a high student turnover rate and a weak presence in competitions, it would show that their approach isn’t working and you would not be getting your money and times worth from there.

The Best Jiu Jitsu Gyms in the World

Marcelo Garcia Jiu Jitsu Academy – New York City, United States 

One of the best and most known Jiu Jitsu academies in the world with a great training environment. Marcelo Garcia is widely known, across the BJJ community, as an all time great instructor. The Acadamy, located in the heart of New york city, has a small training space but the quality of the students and training there is of absolutely high quality.  Marcelo Garcia teaches techniques to classes every day of the week and black belts received under Marcelo Garcia are highly respected across the BJJ community. 

Head Coach and Instructors: 10/10

Notable Students/Training Partners: 9/10

Reputation: 9/10

Renzo Gracie Academy – New York City, United States

The Gracie family are well known and deeply rooted in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. They are known as pioneers of the martial art. Renzo is the grandson of Gracie Jiu Jitsu founder, Carlos Gracie and runs this academy which is one of the top two BJJ Jiu Jitsu schools in NYC. Although in recent years, a coach at Renzo Gracie academy, John Danaher has exploded in popularity in the No-Gi BJJ scene. John Danaher is considered one of the new meta Jiu Jitsu coaches and coaches one of the best teams in competitive BJJ often referred to as “The Danaher Death Squad.”

Head Coach and Instructors: 10/10

Notable Students/Training Partners: 10/10

Reputation: 9/10

ATOS Jiu Jitsu School – San Diego, California, United States

ATOS Jiu Jitsu, run by André Galvão, is one of the strongest teams in today’s BJJ competition scene. André Galvão is regarded as one of the greatest competitors to have ever graced the sport, amassing numerous world titles and championships through years of competition. He has now dedicated himself to teaching the younger generation of up and comers, sharing his hard earned knowledge. ATOS Jiu Jitsu is a must visit if you’re ever in California. 

Head Coach and Instructors: 9/10

Notable Students/Training Partners: 9/10

Reputation: 8/10

Alliance Jiu Jitsu – Sao Paulo, Brazil 

Alliance Jiu Jitsu in Sao Paulo, Brazil is high profile BJJ school with a rich history in the martial art. Founded in 1993 by Fabio Gurgel, Romero Cavalcanti, Alexandre Paiva and Fernando Gurgel, Alliance Jiu Jitsu has spread all over the globe with over 200 branches also producing over 25 black belt world champions. 

Alliance Jiu Jitsu runs classes all day for six days of the week and these are open to beginners or advanced practitioners. Even if you’re not in brazil, they carry a strong reputation globally and you won’t be disappointed by visiting one of their branches abroad. 

Head Coach and Instructors: 10/10

Notable Students/Training Partners: 9/10

Reputation: 10/10

Fight Sports Jiu Jitsu – Miami, Florida, United States

Fight Sports Jiu Jitsu in Miami was founded by Roberto Abreu, also known as “Cyborg,” who is a seven time No-Gi World champion. This gym not only has a strong BJJ coaching staff, including Cyborg who takes most of the classes but also offers MMA and Judo classes as well. Cyborg is highly respected amongst the BJJ community with a reputation for being an all round great and respectable guy.

You will find many high level BJJ practitioners and MMA fighters here all training under Cyborg who has created a very welcoming gym environment and is known for taking care of his students. 

Head Coach and Instructors: 8/10

Notable Students/Training Partners: 8/10

Reputation: 8/10

So which gym is really the best in the world?

There isn’t a right or wrong answer to this. All of the gyms mentioned in this post are some of the most high profile gyms in the world with notable head coaches, training partners, and great reputations. If you’re around any of the gyms mentioned, you will not be disappointed by visiting and training there.

By Emil

Emil is a currently active professional MMA fighter. He was ranked 1st in the Aus/Nz region in his weight class as an amateur, with the most KO’s, and is now actively working up the professional ranks.

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