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ADCC BJJ Rules: World Championship Grappling Tournament

adcc 2019

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ADCC is the world’s biggest no-gi grappling tournament and it is right around the corner. This year we have the privilege of attending the prestigious event and are looking forward to experiencing it for the first time. We thought we would share the ADCC BJJ Rules here with you since the event is a little different than other events that are hosted!

adcc 2019

What is ADCC?

ADCC is the world’s largest no-gi grappling tournament. The event is going to be hosted this year in Las Vegas Nevada and is set to be the greatest one yet! Unfortunately, ADCC was canceled in 2021 due to the outburst of COVID but this year it looks like it will not disappoint.

Abu Dhabi Combat Club (ADCC) will be hosting the world’s best fighters in a single-elimination tournament on September 17th-18th. Both men and women in their respective weight classes will battle it out to determine who is at the top!

The ADCC World Submission Fighting Championships were the idea and creation of UAW national Sheik Tahnoon Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the son of the UAE leader Sheik Zayed. Sheik Tahnoon grew a passion for MMA in 1993 and shortly after started training Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Sheik Tanoon set out to create and build his vision of implementing martial arts not only in the UAE but also creating a standard around the world for which grappling is measured!



  • The Championship is Tournament Style and only the winner goes on.
  • No Slippery Substances on body or clothing.
  • If fighters go out of the mat area, the ref will restart the fight in the same position they went out in.

How You Can Win

  • Submission, Points, Referee decision, Opponent Disqualification.
  • If a competitor gives up or submits by tapping the leg, arm, or verbally.
  • If a fight is over without any points being scored by both fighters the match is decided by the referees.
  • If the Referee feels one competitor is unable to defend himself or feels his life is in danger, the Referee will declare the winner.
  • Fighter will be disqualified by the Referee for breaking forbidden rules.

Time Limits

World Championships
  • Qualifying Rounds = 10 Mins / with a 5 min overtime if it’s a draw. (Max 1 overtime)
    • First 5 mins there are no points
    • Second 5 mins with points (negative and positive)
  • Finals, Absolute Finals & Superfight = 20 mins / with 10 min overtime if there is a draw (Max. 2)
    • First 10 mins no positive points (only negative points will be counted)
    • Second 10 mins with points (negative and positive points)
    • Overtimes 10 mins (negative and positive points)

Legal Techniques

  • Any kind of choke (except hand across the windpipe)
  • Any arm bar, shoulder lock, or wrist lock
  • Any leg lock or ankle lock
  • Can Opener is allowed
  • Twister is allowed

Illegal Techniques

There is a massive list and we want to keep this readable. Here is a screenshot of the illegal techniques!

illegal techniques adcc rules

ADCC is going to be a lot of fun this year. Being that the tournament was postponed last year, this will be our first time attending the event! We will be sure to report back on our thoughts, experiences, and takeaways while attending. As jiu-jitsu becomes a more popular sport, we only envision these events getting bigger and more entertaining!

adcc schedule

You can find a video on Youtube describing the rules in further detail here or download the PDF of the rule set here! Find the list of competitors here and be sure to be on the lookout for 66 KG phenom Josh Cisneros! He coaches us and we are excited to watch him shock the world this year!

Happy Rolling!

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Save 10% on your order using code 'GRAPPLERS'.


Clean, minimalist, and ultralight. The perfect lightweight gear for men, women and kids.


Use code 'GRAPPLERSGRAVEYARD' for 15% off your entire order

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