4 Ways Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Can Benefit Your Life
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Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is a martial art that is based on facing challenges head-on and finding solutions. It is an art of manipulating movement and bodyweight to allow a smaller and weaker person to defeat larger and stronger opponents with the use of techniques, off-balancing, and leverage. This martial art is geared towards achieving “submission” through the use of technique instead of physical strength. BJJ will force you to take a step back and evaluate movements, reactions, and how to act accordingly. By learning BJJ you will learn how to be more self-aware about your body and be accustomed to a high pressure situation
Learning any type of martial art will be a process and it is the same thing with BJJ. Pursuing BJJ is a step forward in improving physical and mental growth. Strangely many people consider BJJ to be one of the most influential catalysts in their life outside the training mats.
Here are some of the most common takeaways that we can get from doing BJJ. I took a step back and try to put myself in the shoes of someone with no BJJ experience, hopefully, you will understand what I’m trying to say. Here are the 5 life lessons BJJ can teach you and how it will improve your life.
1) Looks can be deceiving
If I asked you who would win in a fight between a 6’4 bodybuilder versus a 5’9 office worker who does you think would win? If both do not have any martial arts experience the most likely scenario is the taller man would beat the shorter (and weaker) person every time. But what if the little person has some BJJ experience? In that case the smaller person will win every time. This has been proven many times, just do a search of “BJJ vs street fighter” on Google or Youtube and you will see what I’m saying
Even the tallest and strongest man in the world will be controlled like a toddler if someone competent in BJJ is able to close the distance and take the fight to the ground. The first-ever UFC event is the best example of this, where Royce Gracie is able to defeat all of his opponents by using his knowledge of BJJ.
When you begin learning BJJ you will be manhandled and absolutely destroyed on your first day (most likely) by people that are smaller than you. From this experience, you begin to learn that there is more than meets the eye. Your BJJ experience has given you the lesson to not over/underestimate anyone based on their looks.
This is why many BJJ fighters are very calm outside of training. They already have the knowledge and realization that even the smallest and chubbiest person in the world could beat them if they are a master of BJJ. You will begin to approach life in a more gentle manner and be a calmer person overall
2) Be Water
Adapting to many different stressful situations is the holy grail of Brazilian jiu jitsu. BJJ will teach you to be adaptable and be successful in any situations. Naturally we tend to have a primitive approach when it comes to physical altercation, BJJ will give you a much better alternative that is far safer and more effective than the traditional method of fighting which requires you to be aggressive.
Facing an aggressive person? Use their power and aggressiveness against them. This is something that almost no one outside the BJJ community has the knowledge to do so. And crazily this method of thinking usually transcends beyond the training mats.
While we are still alive there are always times where life is just not good, problem after problem keeps coming and makes you miserable. BJJ helps you to cope and develop the mindset to tackle those type of situations. You will try to find solutions to solve life problems easier while also considering how it will influence your life. This is one of the most important lessons a human being can get in a lifetime.
3) Beginner Mindset
In BJJ you will learn that it is a hard road filled with obstacles, you will be the bottom feeder when you first joined and you will be the one everybody beat. But as time goes by you will get better and maybe get promoted to another belt rank, suddenly you are not the worst person in the room. That is good right?
Well not really, you have to realize that there are still a lot of people with better BJJ knowledge than you. Even when you already a black belt, there are a lot of lower belts BJJ world champions that can still beat you handily. For most people this will demoralize them, don’t.
Being egoless is something that you will learn very often in the world of BJJ. To be able to submit a beginner and not talk about it, to being submitted by a lower belt while you are a black belt, every experience will teach you to be humble and keep the beginner mindset at all time. Even when you are teaching you should put yourself in the shoes of your students and see where you can improve the details.
The most striking aspect of a good BJJ practitioner is how egoless they are. Strive to be egoless on the mats and outside them as well.
4) Teach and Be Teachable
When you first start training you are like a sponge that absorbs everything the teacher's show/told you, you have to possess the desire to absorb as much as you can because the fundamentals are the most important part of BJJ in terms of techniques. Without good fundamental knowledge you will have a hard time learning more advanced techniques. Understand that adequate knowledge of BJJ also involves you to know how to move your body correctly. The act of balancing the knowledge between your brain and body will be the best gauge of how well you know BJJ. Put your mind and body in a state of learning and soon you will be the teacher instead of a student.
Keep in mind that you can fasten the process by supplementing your own training with teaching. Giving people personal training about the techniques you know is one of the most effective ways to improve your BJJ fast. You will learn how to see things from the eyes of a beginner and that will help you see any opportunities that you might have missed when training. Most of the world champions in BJJ is also a great trainer so there are correlations between the two. You will only get benefits if you decided to teach other people, so teach!
Written By: John Ananto