About BJJ Lifestyle Academy

The BJJ Lifestyle Academy, spearheaded by the Coach Mike Rethmeyer, has come a long way since its modest start at the Katy Cavins Community Center in O’Fallon, Illinois in 2006. In 2009, the academy achieved a significant milestone by launching its first Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) school in Belleville, IL. Since then, it has been committed to providing exceptional BJJ training to both children and adults, in both gi and no-gi formats.

With its continued success, the academy opened its second location in South County St. Louis in 2016, further expanding its reach and making high-quality BJJ training accessible to even more people. Whether you’re a seasoned athlete or just starting your BJJ journey, the BJJ Lifestyle Academy has the expertise and facilities to help you reach your full potential.

At our academies, we believe in fostering a sense of community and camaraderie among our students, creating a welcoming environment where everyone can learn and grow together. With our experienced and passionate coaches, and a comprehensive curriculum, you can rest assured that you’re getting the best possible training experience. Join us at the BJJ Lifestyle Academy and become a part of a vibrant and supportive BJJ community!

It is with great pride that we announce our sponsorship by the U.S. Air Force Special Warfare. This collaboration signifies our mutual commitment to upholding the principles of devotion, discipline, and pursuit of greatness. As a distinguished force renowned for its exceptional training, the Air Force Special Warfare aligns perfectly with our academy’s mission of delivering unparalleled instruction to our students.


About Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) is a martial art and combat sport that originated in Brazil in the early 20th century. It has gained immense popularity worldwide in recent years, and for good reason – BJJ is widely regarded as one of the most effective martial arts out there.

BJJ is based on the principles of leverage and technique, rather than brute strength. It involves grappling and ground fighting, with the goal of submitting your opponent through joint locks or chokes. The art emphasizes the importance of positional control, where the practitioner seeks to gain advantageous positions over their opponent, allowing them to execute submissions or force them to submit. One of the main reasons why BJJ is considered to be so effective is that it was developed and refined through intense testing and competition. The Gracie family, who are credited with creating and popularizing BJJ, developed the art through countless real-life fights and matches, both on the streets and in the ring. This testing and refinement allowed them to develop a system that was not only effective but also efficient and practical.

In addition to its practical effectiveness, BJJ has been proven to be a highly effective form of self-defense. Its emphasis on technique and leverage means that even smaller and weaker individuals can effectively defend themselves against larger and stronger attackers. In fact, the art was specifically designed to allow a smaller person to defeat a larger opponent through superior technique and positioning. This has been demonstrated time and time again in the world of mixed martial arts (MMA), where BJJ practitioners have consistently outperformed fighters from other martial arts backgrounds. The Gracie family themselves were pioneers in the early days of MMA, with their impressive performances in the UFC helping to put BJJ on the map.

Even today, BJJ remains a dominant force in MMA. Fighters like Demian Maia, Jacare Souza, and Rafael dos Anjos have all found success in the octagon through their proficiency in BJJ. In fact, BJJ is considered to be a foundational skill for any fighter looking to be successful in MMA. But BJJ isn’t just effective in the world of combat sports – it also has numerous benefits for practitioners outside of the ring. The art provides an excellent workout, building strength, endurance, and flexibility. It also promotes mental discipline and focus, as well as providing an outlet for stress relief. Moreover, BJJ has been proven to be an effective tool for character development. The art emphasizes humility, respect, and discipline, instilling these values in its practitioners. It also provides a sense of community, with students forming close bonds with one another through their shared love of the art.

In conclusion, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is widely regarded as the most effective martial art due to its emphasis on technique, leverage, and practicality. Its proven effectiveness in real-life fights and competition, as well as in the world of MMA, has solidified its reputation as a dominant force in the martial arts world. Moreover, BJJ provides numerous physical, mental, and character-building benefits to its practitioners, making it an excellent choice for anyone looking to improve their fitness and overall wellbeing.