Recognizing Patterns

Every sequence of movements and techniques within Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu creates a pattern.  As practitioners, we spend much time on developing effective patterns that eventually lead us to our end goal- superior position or submission.

As important as developing these patterns is, we must also learn to recognize the patterns of other practitioners or opponents. If we are able to recognize their patterns, we will be able to disrupt them by changing our timing or by applying effective counters.

This is an effective concept to try and to apply in both free training and in competition.

In free training, it will help you to develop strong counter-timing, build strong fundamental skills and help you to start thinking not just about your own game, but how it interacts with different patterns (which are core to game plans and styles).

In competition, it is usually the competitor who imposes their game plan first who will succeed. We cannot always guarantee that we will be first, but being able to recognize patterns of movement will help to to recover if you find yourself being sucked into an imposing opponent’s game plan. It may even open up opportunities to snatch a quick submission once you start to disrupt an opponent & they begin making errors.

Pattern recognition will help you to become a better all round strategist and practitioner as you will look more to actively problem solve for the pattern currently being presented to you, rather than stubbornly (and often futilely) trying to apply your same pattern to every possible situation.

Thanks for reading.

Oss.

Thoughts on Attendance: 3 reasons to be there.

Attending training is an often discussed topic. The bottom line is that consistent attendance leads to consistent improvement. 

I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve heard a person say that they’ve hit a plateau or they’ve been in a training rut for months and months; irregular attendance is almost always the reason for this narrative.

The baddest men and women I have encountered in the training room are the ones who are consistent. They attend class, and reap the rewards of their hard, consistent, training.

The mats never lie, and it’s always very clear to see how much time anyone in particular is putting in. I’d like to share 3 of my main thoughts on this topic: Continue reading “Thoughts on Attendance: 3 reasons to be there.”

Hitting the wall: Thoughts on plateaus & mental blocks in training.

Many a student has experienced the notorious “plateau” or felt the sensation that they, try as they might, are getting nowhere with their training. “Hitting the wall” is or experiencing a mental block is common in any area of learning, Martial Arts being no different.

I would like to share my thoughts on why I believe that the dreaded plateau does not exist. In my opinion, it is in fact a symptom of a far more important cause that needs to be treated in your practice.  Continue reading “Hitting the wall: Thoughts on plateaus & mental blocks in training.”

Experimentation: Trial and Error

A huge part of Brazilian Jiu-jitsu’s continuing success as a martial art is an emphasis on creativity and experimentation.

No two practitioners will express themselves in the same way: some will prefer certain techniques and movements over others and develop their own particular style through a process of discovery, experimentation & trial and error. I’d like to explore the importance of Experimentation in this post.

Hold on, ‘cos we’re about to get scientific.

Continue reading “Experimentation: Trial and Error”

Jiu-jitsu. Any way you look at it.

We all have these moments or experiences that force us to see things in a new light or from a different angle. Those formative moments, “moments of clarity” if you like, or sudden realizations mainly occur when we open ourselves up to new opportunities. Some of the most formative moments in my own journey with the martial art haven’t even occurred on the mats, or with people who know what Brazilian Jiu-jitsu is. 

Jiu-jitsu can teach us to learn from anyone. Any way you look at it, those lessons travel with you throughout your whole life.  Continue reading “Jiu-jitsu. Any way you look at it.”