The Importance of Good Hygiene in No-Gi 10th Planet Jiu Jitsu: Preventing Staph, Ringworm, and Other Skin Diseases

Sunday, May 19, 2024

No-Gi Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ), especially in the 10th Planet system, offers a dynamic and intense training environment. The absence of the traditional gi means closer contact and more direct skin exposure, which, while exciting and challenging, also heightens the risk of skin infections. Maintaining good hygiene in No-Gi BJJ is crucial to prevent the spread of staph, ringworm, and other skin diseases. In this post, we’ll explore the significance of hygiene in No-Gi BJJ and provide practical tips to ensure a healthy training environment.

Understanding Common Skin Infections in No-Gi BJJ

1. Staph Infections:

Staphylococcus bacteria are common on the skin and can cause serious infections if they enter the body through cuts or abrasions. Staph infections can range from minor skin irritations to severe health issues requiring medical intervention.

2. Ringworm:

Ringworm is a highly contagious fungal infection that manifests as a red, ring-shaped rash. It spreads easily through direct skin contact or contaminated surfaces, making it a common issue in grappling sports.

3. Herpes:

Herpes simplex virus (HSV) can cause cold sores or fever blisters on the mouth (HSV-1) and genital herpes (HSV-2). In BJJ, the most common form is herpes gladiatorum, which appears as clusters of blisters on the face, neck, and shoulders. It is highly contagious and can spread through skin-to-skin contact.

4. Other Fungal Infections:

Infections such as athlete’s foot and jock itch thrive in warm, moist environments. These fungal infections can spread quickly in places like locker rooms and on mats, posing a risk to all gym members.

Why Good Hygiene Is Crucial in No-Gi BJJ

1. Personal Health Protection:

Maintaining good hygiene practices is essential for protecting your own health. Preventing infections not only keeps you healthy but also ensures that you can continue training without interruption.

2. Respect for Training Partners:

Good hygiene shows respect for your training partners. By keeping yourself clean and free of infections, you help create a safer and more enjoyable training environment for everyone.

3. Preserving the Gym Environment:

Regular hygiene practices help maintain a clean and safe gym environment. Clean mats, equipment, and facilities reduce the spread of infections and enhance the overall training experience.

Practical Hygiene Tips for No-Gi BJJ Practitioners

1. Shower Immediately After Training:

Always shower promptly after training. Use antibacterial soap or soap formulated for grapplers to thoroughly clean your skin, paying special attention to areas prone to infection, such as feet, groin, and armpits.

2. Keep Your Gear Clean:

Wash your rash guards, shorts, and other training gear after every session. Use hot water and a quality detergent and a cup of vinegar or specially designed grappling detergent to eliminate bacteria and fungi. Ensure your gear is completely dry before wearing it again.

3. Perform Regular Skin Checks:

Inspect your skin regularly for any signs of infection, such as redness, swelling, or unusual rashes. If you notice any suspicious spots, refrain from training and consult a healthcare professional.

4. Cover Cuts and Abrasions:

Cover any cuts, scrapes, or open wounds with a clean, waterproof bandage before training. This prevents bacteria from entering the wound and reduces the risk of spreading infections to others.

5. Clean the Mats:

Ensure that the training mats are cleaned and disinfected regularly. Many gyms have cleaning protocols in place, but it’s always good to be proactive and ensure the mats are clean before stepping on them.

6. Avoid Sharing Personal Items:

Do not share personal items such as towels, water bottles, or hygiene products. Bring your own gear and make sure it stays clean and separate from others.

7. Maintain Good Foot Hygiene:

Keep your feet clean and dry, especially since No-Gi training is done barefoot. Use antifungal spray if you’re prone to athlete’s foot, and always wear flip-flops or sandals in the gym when not on the mats.

8. Be Aware of Herpes:

If you have a herpes outbreak, avoid training until the lesions have completely healed. Herpes gladiatorum can spread rapidly in a gym environment. Inform your instructor if you have an outbreak so appropriate measures can be taken to prevent further spread.

9. Trim Your Nails:

Having long finger or toenails can cause cuts to you or your training partners. These cuts can lead to infection so make sure to always keep your nails trimmed. 


Good hygiene in No-Gi 10th Planet Jiu Jitsu is not just about personal cleanliness; it’s about fostering a safe and respectful training environment for everyone. By adhering to proper hygiene practices, you can significantly reduce the risk of skin infections like staph, ringworm, and other diseases. This commitment to cleanliness ensures that you, your training partners, and your gym remain healthy, allowing everyone to enjoy the many benefits of BJJ without unnecessary interruptions. Stay clean, stay healthy, and keep rolling!

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