We both know you’ve been thinking about training in BJJ if you’re asking that question!
However, you have not taken the important step of actually joining a class.
You’re undecided about it.
You don’t have time.
Maybe, you’re not sure whether bjj is for you.
Hopefully all of this will help you to overcome that last bit of anxiety you have and push you towards actually joining a bjj class instead of just thinking about it.
After all, A mile of a thousand journeys begins with a first step, right?
When I first got interested in grappling, I asked myself the same exact question – is BJJ for me?
After all there are so many fighting sports to choose from.
So many paths to glory.
Is THIS the ONE?
After a few training sessions though, I realized how much I could gain from bjj and I’ve never looked back since.
In this article I’ll try to provide you with enough information to decide whether to take that first class or not.
- A Brief Refresher On BJJ
- Is BJJ any different from all the other martial arts?
- What to expect from training in Brazilian jiu jitsu?
- BJJ Loves Me… BJJ Loves Me Not
- The Best Part?
- How BJJ Has Saved Many Lives
A Brief Refresher On BJJ
Brazilian jiu jitsu is a combat sport and a martial art system which focuses on grappling.
It’s basically two people rolling around on the floor trying waiting for the other to tap out – ground fighting.
Brazilian jiu jitsu originated from Kodokan judo ground fighting.
Is BJJ any different from all the other martial arts?
Almost every martial art will improve your stamina and self-defense skills.
BJJ is no different!
Or is it?
There are many ways in which Brazilian jiu jitsu will improve your lifestyle and wellbeing and become a gift of joy that just keeps on giving, like no other martial art.
It has become so popular globally for a reason!
Let’s get to those reasons, shall we?
What to expect from training in Brazilian jiu jitsu?
Mad Self Defense Skills.
Brazilian jiu jitsu was developed for self-defense.
It is among the best sports to engage in to learn this skill.
Jiu jitsu as a sport removes the advantages that come with size, when it comes to combat.
Which means that a smaller or a weaker person can handle themselves against bigger opponents.
You’re a nice person and you will never get into fights, like ever, you say?
To believe that you will never need to defend yourself or someone else is beyond naive.
BJJ will provide you with a skillset for many challenging situations.
You can choose to simply neutralize your opponent.
You also get to learn moves to protect yourself from attacks without harming your attacker too much.
You can be gentle like yoda and stay safe at the same time!
Brazilian jiu jitsu can help you to grow your self confidence.
While training you’ll be confronted with difficult sitations all the time and sometimes you’ll come out of them victorious, sometimes – not so much.
Your ability to maneuver these complex training situations will build up your confidence in your ability to handle your daily struggles.
Feeling better makes you feel better doh.
Training over and over again will improve your self-esteem and give you the much needed drive to face difficult situations in real life.
Long work hours. Lots of responsibilities. We all suffer from stress. Exercising is a great way to get rid of stress, and jiu jitsu is the perfect activity to engage in. While other forms of exercise may focus on few areas of the body, bjj engages your whole body. This keeps you fit physically as well as mentally.
If you are someone who finds it hard to interact and maintain interpersonal relationships, Brazilian jiu jitsu might actually help you with some gainz here as well.
People who train together interact regularly.
Communicating and helping one another out on the mat is pretty much a given at any decent gym.
There is also a feeling of camaraderie, which makes you increasingly expressive. This affects you in your everyday life, as you become more approachable and social.
Training in bjj forces you to develop good habits and lead a healthier life.
As an individual that practices jiu jitsu, you have to wake up early, go to bed early, eat good food, and also do away with habits like smoking. All of these help you stay in a good competitive shape, and have great impact on your everyday life. This brings about changes and all-round positivity to your lifestyle.
The key to building habits that last is to change the way you view yourself. In an article by the master of habits – James Clear, he says that you need to focus on creating your new identity first. Your habits are a reflection of your current view of yourself – your current identity. If you start training in BJJ(a healthy habit) then you start viewing yourself as the type of person who is doing healthy things. Slowly but surely you start believing that you’re the type of person that leads a healthy life and you engage in more healthy behaviours and quit the unhealthy ones. I suggest you read his whole book on habits and how to form them so that they stick – Atomic Habits by James Clear
How is this applicable to bjj training?
When you start training regularly a change in your identity will take place. You’ll start to see someone who: leads a healthy life.
This in turn will affect all your habits. You’ll simply grow out of your bad habits, because of your new identity.
One of the most positive environments you can be in, is a jiu jitsu dojo; and this is for obvious reasons. Everyone is working on their skills, trying to get better with their jiu jitsu. The arena is therefore a cheerful one, with everyone passing words of encouragement, cheering each other on, and getting better. For someone dealing with any form of negativity in real life, this is a perfect place to be, to get better physically and mentally.
Jiu jitsu is a great sport to engage in as a goal getter. There are many milestones to achieve in the sport, such as: progressing from a white belt to gain your black belt. There are also many other important goals to achieve, such as: learning new moves, moving up the ranks till the black belt, and fitness goals. With jiu jitsu, you can challenge yourself by setting a timeframe for learning a certain move or achieving a belt, and consciously working towards achieving it. This teaches you discipline which you can apply in your everyday life. Everyone who does jiu jitsu is a goal getter.
BJJ Loves Me… BJJ Loves Me Not
Most people worry about their shape when they consider BJJ; many are concerned about starting BJJ out of shape. It is important that you do not make the mistake of thinking you need to get in better shape before you start BJJ, as many people think this and never end up starting.
The Best Part?
Brazilian jiu jitsu is for anyone and everyone. Rather than waste time trying to get in shape for BJJ and never actually getting to start, sign up for your first class as soon as possible, and you will get in better shape as a result of your classes. This sport is for the small and skinny guy; the teenager who is interested in martial arts, the woman who needs to defend herself, the musclebound guy, the father with kids, the grandfather who is growing old and sore. You just need to start.
How BJJ Has Saved Many Lives
A lot of inspiring stories abound about individuals who have enjoyed the benefits of Jiu jitsu. For Ryan Salisbury, it was the attitude fixer which he needed, as it improved his decision-making process and also ensured that he was not affected by failure; you can read his story here. A lot of other people have also had their lives transformed with the help of jiu jitsu. It helped them overcome different challenges. Here you can read the story of Nicholas and how bjj has provided him with a self confidence boost, and also that of James who had to go through a lot of hardship while growing up.
Do well to share your experiences in starting jiu jitsu, how you overcame the anxiety, and the impacts it has had on your wellbeing. However, if you are still skeptical about starting out, hit the nearest jiu jitsu dojo, and leave it all out on the mat. With the many benefits you stand to gain, you will be better off for it.