1/03/2014

Starting BJJ and the cost of training in the Helsinki area

As the year 2014 is starting, and many people are looking to start a new hobby, I decided to take a quick look on where you can train jiu jitsu in the capital area in Helsinki and what the cost of doing so might be.

Locations to train:

I wanted to put up some information on where you can train Brazilian Jiu Jitsu in the Helsiki area as this is the time when many are looking for new hobbies after New Year's.

Location is often the most important reason to train at a certain place. Currently there are a lot of locations to train jiu jitsu in Helsinki and the market seems quite "mature". There are options all over the place..


Cost of training:

It seems that the average annual cost of training is sligthly above 500 eur in a year in the capital area, 522 to be exact when you take the option which requires the longest commitment. The variation between different gyms is quite substantial and you can expect to pay anything between 350 and 800 EUR per year. You of course have to add the cost of equipment including gis, grappling shorts, rash guards, mouthguards etc when you compare brazilian jiu jitsu with other hobbies.

It is pretty pointless to compare pricing directly as many gyms offer fitness classes that are included in the annual (or monthly) fee or simply have more classes available. There are also gyms that have multiple locations to train at.

What is really positive is that all gyms have pricing information available on their websites. This is not common at all in the US for example where gyms lure you in for a sales pitch before they reveal their prices. When making an international comparison, you also notice that training in Finland is pretty cheap as training in California for example can be 2000 USD a year.

Here is a quick table on cost per year vs training sessions per week (2.1.2014, gym website info only)


Observations on cost of training
- Overall, gyms located further from the city center are slightly cheaper.
- Gyms with a lot of training times (=flexibility) tend to be a bit more expensive. I am happy to notice that Takado where I train has probably the best ratio of training cost to training sessions available
- Basic courses cost more per month than advanced training. This is pretty natural as many beginner's stop training after a few months. The average beginner's course costs 57 Eur per month when normal training is around 44 Eur per month

It is also a fact that the price and location are not the only criteria for where you want to train:
- Some schools are more competition oriented, some more MMA-oriented so you should know what you are looking
- Some gyms are very well equipped and comfortable compared to others.
- Some gyms have more experienced instructors and competitors than others that are just starting out.

Before decining where you want to train, you should definately visit different gyms for a class or two to try them out. This helps you to figure out what the school is like. A comprehensive list can be found at:
List of Finnish BJJ teams

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