It depends on the place and time. Open mats we just show up and roll, no warm-ups. Open training sessions at my friend’s house are similar. Just show up and dive into jiu jitsu.
Normal classes at my gym are much more structured, and that’s probably pretty typical. We start with about 20 minutes of warm-ups. These can vary a bit. Usually a few minutes of stretching. Usually a few minutes of ab work. Sometimes we run. We often do fundamental movements like shrimping across the floor in various ways, front and back rolls, and technical stand ups. Sometimes we do a little stretching and then warm-up with basic jiu jitsu moves. But whatever we do, it usually runs about 20 minutes.
Then we work a takedown. One per month, with about 5-10 minutes of class time devoted to just drilling it over and over.
Then the instructor will demonstrate a few techniques. This usually runs about 35-45 minutes. We work on one position for the entire month. This month we’re doing back control, both attack and defense. Last month was mount. Before was guard. Before that side control. Submissions, submission defense and escapes from the positions are all covered. He shows us the techniques and we drill it over and over. Sometimes with a compliant partner but you can also add resistance here too.
After drilling we roll. This is a BJJ term for sparring. This can vary in intensity. Sometimes an upper belt will just work with you on something specific, almost more like situational drilling. Sometimes you go after each other but keep things light and playful. Sometimes you smash the shit out of each other. Rolling is optional class-to-class, but required in some shape or form. Rolling is where you make your techniques work against a resisting opponent. After a class I usually roll two or three five minute rounds. Sometimes more, sometimes not at all. If I’m injured I don’t mess with it.
A partner is required. There are many solo drills you could do to supplement your jiu jitsu, but you won’t ever learn it without a live body to train with. Rolling with one person is better than rolling with no one, but rolling with many people is even better.
If there’s a school close to you, you could just sit in on a class. I’m sure you can see some classes online somewhere on youtube, but that might not be the same sort of structure or format you’ll get at the schools in your area. I went to a class at my brown belt friend’s school and it was structured a lot differently. Both formats make sense when you look at them in context, so you can have different formats to teach jiu jitsu depending on things like time, experience of teacher and student, classroom composition, frequency of classes, sport or self-defense application, philosophy of jiu jitsu, and plenty of other factors I’m not even thinking about. Each school will have its own format and vibe, so that’s why I recommend sitting in on a class.
It is. Especially when you’re 280 lbs!