The Meditative Trio of Jiujitsu, Capoeira, and Breathwork

Engaging in practices such as Capoeira, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, and including breathing techniques into our daily lives can have huge benefits. 

In our fast-paced and demanding world, it becomes increasingly important to find moments of calm, self-reflection, and personal growth. 

Meditation, a central aspect of these practices, promotes calmness, reduces stress, and cultivates inner peace. By watching our thoughts and emotions without judgment, we gain clarity and a deeper understanding of ourselves.

Ultimately, these practices equip us with valuable tools for self-care, stress reduction, and personal development. 

READ ALSO: Inner Peace: On Staying In The Moment Through Meditation

By dedicating time to these practices, we foster inner balance and become more resilient, grounded, and fulfilled individuals.

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) is a martial art and combat sport that focuses on ground fighting and grappling techniques. It originated from Judo, a Japanese martial art, and was further developed in Brazil. 

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu
Photo via Instagram @lucaslepri

BJJ teaches leverage, technique, and submission holds to overcome opponents, even when facing a disadvantage in size and strength. It emphasizes ground-based combat and teaches various techniques like joint locks, chokes, and controlling positions.

Practicing BJJ offers several benefits. It improves physical fitness and helps develop mental discipline, problem-solving skills, and strategic thinking. 

According to Lucas Lepri, a nine-time world champion and top BJJ black belt, BJJ teaches patience and is considered as the most essential quality in BJJ practice, “When in a tough position, rushing to escape can lead to worse outcomes. Patience helps in problem-solving, making the best decisions, and avoiding future regrets.”

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu
Lucas Lepri/Photo via Instagram @lucaslepri 

While BJJ can be quick and physically demanding, there is certainly room for a slow and mindful approach. This approach not only boosts the learning process and technical proficiency but also promotes a deeper mind-body connection and a more sustainable and enjoyable practice.

Last May 12 to 14, 2023, Lepri brought together over 80 Jiu-jitsu enthusiasts for a three-day camp at Club Punta Fuego, Nasugbu, Batangas. The practitioners got the chance to enjoy the calming, scenic sights of the world-class resort while learning the ‘gentle art’ of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. 

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Mano Amiga students with Coach Philip Alegre, Professor Lucas Lepri, and Coach Pat Alegre
Mano Amiga students with Coach Philip Alegre, Professor Lucas Lepri, and Coach Pat Alegre/Photo courtesy of Lucas Lepri Philippines


Capoeira is an Afro-Brazilian art form that combines music, dance, movement, play, fighting, and games. Originating in the 16th century as a form of resistance and self-preservation among African slaves in Brazil, Capoeira was recognized by UNESCO as an important cultural heritage in 2014.

In the Philippines, the organization BANTU utilizes Capoeira as a means of social empowerment and healing. They provide young individuals from disadvantaged communities with the necessary tools to overcome their challenging circumstances and achieve success in life.

Photo via Instagram @bantuphilippines 

Capoeira is a holistic practice that strengthens the mind-body connection, enhancing physical strength, motor skills, coordination, and balance. It promotes strategic thinking, which is valuable in various aspects of life, including business, education, and relationships. 

Additionally, maintaining a close relationship with music and dance, as seen in Capoeira, has been linked to preventing cognitive decline in old age.

According to BANTU Philippines, as one becomes more immersed in Capoeira, it becomes like a “second skin,” allowing individuals to embody its principles of self-empowerment, self-improvement, and community development.

Capoeira Bantu Philippines
Photo via Instagram @bantuphilippines 

“I think that it is in these ways that Capoeira can be a great tool for de-stressing: that it provides an activity that exercises the body, the mind, and the soul and which by its practice alone holds the potential to expel stress and negativity by putting the entirety of the person in a different space,” says BANTU Philippines.

Capoeira fosters community, support, and strategic thinking for individual well-being and community improvement.

Performance Regimen

A breathing practice can have both profound physical and mental benefits. Physically, it enhances exercise performance, reduces effort and breathlessness, improves blood oxygenation, sleep quality, and promotes better posture with decreased injury risks. 

Mentally, it boosts mental clarity, focus, emotional intelligence, and decreases anxiety and perceived stress. Observing someone’s breathing can provide insights into their physical and mental state.

Denzel Dion So, a breath and sleep coach in the Philippines, emphasizes the importance of awareness and cultivating internal understanding. Instead of using the term “meditation,” he prefers “flow state” for better accessibility. 

Performance Regimen
Photo via Instagram @performanceregimen 

So includes exercise, movement, and breathwork protocols to provide clients with a solid anchor and a deeper understanding of the practice.

Additionally, So focuses that stress cannot be avoided but can only be managed. By paying attention to our breath and improving our relationship with stress, we enhance our performance and response to uncertainty, fear, and panic. 

Performance Regimen
Photo via Instagram @performanceregimen 

So’s Performance Regimen, focuses on aiding high performers in thriving under pressure and handling their energy. The program achieves this by merging breathwork practices, movement, and sleep methods. 

So developed the Performance Regimen to address the issues of burnout, stress, and anxiety experienced by individuals. This program improves life quality by addressing stress, aiding recovery, and fostering flow, impacting individuals’ work, thoughts, and relationships.

Instead of avoiding stress, the Performance Regimen recognizes the potential of stress to build inner strength and foster personal growth.

Performance Regimen
Photo via Instagram @performanceregimen 

Jiujitsu, Capoeira, and breathing exercises all have meditative qualities. They provide opportunities for physical and mental focus, awareness, and stress management. 

So, whether you’re rolling on the mats, moving to the rhythm of Capoeira, or finding your breath, these practices offer a fun path to mindfulness and personal growth. 

Embrace the martial arts and the power of breath for a blended mind, body, and soul.

Banner photo by ArtHouse Studio via Pexels. 

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