Getting started in soft art has never been easy for anyone. If learning to tie the belt is already a challenge for a Jiu Jitsu Beginner, imagine understanding the details of a closed guard triangle.
The good news is that, although everyone has their own way and learn differently, some tips in Jiu Jitsu are universal and help any practitioner on their way to the black belt.
With that in mind, Here are 4 valuable tips to help you learn brazilian jiu jitsu. Also check out this guide about BJJ in NYC in case you are looking to go to New York anytime soon
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Repetition is the key to a Jiu Jitsu Beginner’s success
It is very likely that your Teacher / Master will always emphasize that you should repeat the technique of the day as many times as you can.
Still, many students repeat “two for each side” and start talking about random subjects, or even try different techniques.
This, however, only delays their evolution! If you intend to be a respected jiu jitsu beginner, listen to your teacher! Be attentive during the explanation and do your repetitions with full focus.
Furthermore, just as important as repeating more is to repeat it correctly. Each repetition should aim to be better than the last and closest to what your teacher taught.
For that, don’t be ashamed to call your teacher when you have questions or even to give you some feedback on the technique. In the beginning it is difficult to notice his mistakes, and there is no one better than him to suggest a correction.
Want to know if your technique is becoming more efficient? Realize how much you “wear out” to make it work: if you need a lot of strength to apply it, you are probably wrong in some detail!
Practice the techniques, but focus on the concepts
The most common form of learning in most Jiu Jitsu academies is through repetition of techniques / positions.
Often, the Jiu Jitsu Beginner believes that a black belt is someone who memorized hundreds or thousands of techniques and positions, step by step.
However, deep down, this is not what makes a successful jiujiteiro. Memorizing all of these complete techniques would require energy and time that no human being is capable of.
The Black Belt, in fact, is someone who used the study and repetition of techniques to learn the concepts that exist behind them.
These concepts, in turn, can be ported to other diverse situations of Jiu Jitsu.
If you learn a Closed Guard Opening, for example, don’t focus on the position itself, but on the basic concepts and posture behind it!
Whoever focuses on concepts, learns much more quickly and easily, than whoever focuses only on positions!
Study and practice also off the mat
No, I’m not telling you to “roll” with your colleagues on the lawn or press a rear naked choke on your family members!
Jiu Jitsu is learned on the mat, always under the supervision of your teacher.
However, there are concrete ways to use your free time to evolve in gentle art. And studying Jiu Jitsu is one of the best ways.
Online videos and teaching platforms can be great ways to supplement your training when used correctly.
But a beginner in Jiu Jitsu should not only focus on evolving in the technical part of soft art. The Jiu Jitsu lifestyle goes far beyond learning an Armlock or a Double Leg Defense.
Knowing the history and philosophy of soft art (from the origin of Traditional Jiu-Jitsu and Judo to the spread of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu) is indispensable for any practitioner.
But avoid excessive information
No matter how hungry you are for learning, our energy for learning is indisputably limited.
Watching three straight hours of random techniques on YouTube will do nothing but confuse your mind and spend your precious time.
The rule is simple: Any extra tatami practice must supplement and never hinder your training.
If your teacher is teaching a closed guard sweep this week, focus your studies on improving your closed guard. Watching a good video or reading a blog post on the topic will definitely supplement your workout. However, always keep in mind that Jiu Jitsu is learned on the mat!