Studying the Art

My first experience studying the Art of Jiu Jitsu was in the lead up to my first ever tournament. I was stressed out about the idea of competing and I carried that in and out of my training sessions (to my own detriment). I got my hands on a copy of Musashi’s famous ‘Book of Five Rings’ and it changed my life. Even though the book itself was not directly related to jiu jitsu, everything Musashi meditated upon applies broadly to martial arts. As a casual book reader, I didn’t realize the power this aspect had when it came to my jiu Jitsu. Studying the Art improved not only the physical aspects of my practice, but the mental side too. 

I believe that this concept if study is often neglected but is immensley useful for the begginer and advanced grappler alike. In a way, studying (whether it’s reading or reviewing video etc) is like doing mental repetitions. 

If you enjoy watching videos online, have an objective. Don’t just watch any clips because someone is showing some cool new guard or a crazy elaborate pass; reflect on what you need in your practice and then research videos regarding that specific thing.

If you’re a reader, find a style of writing that you enjoy. There’s not much to be gained reading the Hagakure or Go Rin No Sho if the style of writing is not something you’re familiar with or enjoy reading. I’ve been recommended many books on BJJ or martial arts that I’ve put down and never picked up again because the writing was not to my liking.

At the end of the day, you are learning something. You’re learning how to become better at jiu jitsu and studying off the mats is just as important as your practice on the mats. Your learning is your responsibility, so go train & go learn.

Beating the Sedentary Lifestyle: Starting out Small

Continuing on the theme from yesterday’s post; Beating the Sedentary Lifestyle: The Modern Day Killer, we will continue looking at ways to overcome the sedentary lifestyle.

Not everyone is suddenly going to be able to say “Damn, you’re right! I need to get out and exercise every day!” That’s how fads start and it’s only a superficial fix. If you go from nothing to everything, it will likely be too much and you will either get injured or burn out and give up. You have to build it up by starting out small.  Continue reading

Beating the Sedentary Lifestyle: The Modern day Killer

I’m of the belief that one of the biggest killers today (at least within the developed world) is not a specific disease or illness, but is instead the kind of lifestyle lead by the majority of people; The Sedentary Lifestyle¹. 

More so than many pre-existing medical conditions, illness or external factors; our lifestyle plays a large- if not the largest- role in dictating our health and well being. Many of us grow up learning to manage our time & money, relationships etc., but very few of us take the time to learn to manage our own lifestyle and well being. Today, more so than ever before, technology enables us to live in a way that allows us to be stationary for more and more time during our waking day. Continue reading

Thoughts on Reality & Hard Work

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Photo by George Miller

“There is no substitute for hard work” 

For some, the concept of hard work & the perceived discomfort it will bring (and the perceived ‘lack’ of results that follow) is just not worth the effort. I think we live in a time, now more so than ever before, where people want instant gratification; so many people see results but do not anticipate the hard work it requires to get there and become quick to make excuses once they realize they are not willing to invest the time and effort required. 

Continue reading