What Are You Working on?

There are different approaches to training jiu-jitsu.

Some guys just like to show up to the academy and get a few rolls in, have a workout and then back to work or home.

Others take a far more serious, methodological approach and plan and make notes on each training session.
I’ve seen guys get a new Bjj instructional app or DVD set and systematically work their way through each technique, drilling and learning.

If you want to improve your Bjj, having a training focus is essential.
Do you think that professional athletes show up for practice and their coach says “Today we are going to do something random I just saw on Youtube over my morning coffee?”

Of course not!

So what should you work on?
A good question!

Here are 3 suggestions for you:

1) Did you get tapped by the same submission repeatedly?
When students are at a loss of what they should be working on I ask them “Well, did you get tapped out your last few rolls? How did it happen?”
There is a starting point.
How did you get into the bad position in the first place?
What is the counter to the submission?

Ask your instructor to give you some ideas and start drilling them until you improve in that area.


2) Your A Game
Everyone finds some positions seem to feel more natural for them and they experience their earliest rolling successes with certain moves.
Black Belt World Champions will tell you that they first started having success with their patented techniques WAY back when they were blue belts!

Identify what is your “A Game” and study that position in depth. You might even be a belt level or 2 higher at certain positions in your “A Game”.
Competitors especially should build an area where they try to draw their opponents and dominate.

Drill your best positions to the point of razor sharpness.


3) The Hole in Your Game
This is the toughest one to address. It is far easier to ignore it and go for the things that you know can win you matches.
But as time goes on, the hole does not go away and higher level opponents will find and exploit your weak areas.

If you want to eventually graduate to a purple, brown and black belt, it will be difficult to do without a balanced game.
You should have a good idea of what your weak areas are – now commit to doing something about it!
Weak guard? Start on the bottom on your rolls.
Great sweeps but no submissions from your guard? Limit your attacks to submissions and put the sweeps aside for now.
No takedowns? Start your matches standing and drill some basic takedowns.

on Jiu-jitsu Times A Reader Question: “Feeling like I don’t deserve the Blue belt I just got.”

What are YOU focusing on in your bjj these days?


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