Advice for a BJJ beginner

Discussion in 'Grappling Technique' started by KarateJoe, Oct 9, 2005.

  1. KarateJoe

    KarateJoe White Belt

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    I just started taking bjj classes and I was hoping people could give me some advice. I have no martial arts or wrestling experience, except some akido when I was like 6. I don't have any specific questions, but would like some general "words of wisdom" if you have any. I am 5'10 about 180 pounds, in o.k. shape, and am not a fighter. This post might be too boring for most to reply to, but I am new to this whole internet forum thing and this is my first post. Thanks in advance!
     
  2. Big Red

    Big Red Green Belt

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    Hehe, so the Karate is just for your name? No experience in anything else?

    I'm taller, weigh more but was in the same boat as you. Just enjoy it man, you will be brutalised more so than someone with grappling experience like I was..I AM :redface: , but it doesn't matter. Get stuck in.
     
  3. Big Red

    Big Red Green Belt

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    This should be common sense but many a mutha' I've met break these important rules in grappling.

    Respect everyone
    Balance the priorities of BJJ, take it seriously yet have fun. Don't be an ass hurting others yet don't grapple like winner gets a night with Eva Longoria.
    Maintain good hygiene. Wash your gi/training gear.
    If we ever compete, please let me win :)
     
  4. KarateJoe

    KarateJoe White Belt

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    Thank for replying. When I used to watch the first UFCs in highschool there was a little blond dude who was a replacement, I can't remember what number or who he fought but he got worked over, and we called him Karate Joe. I thought he was hilarious.
    The place I am going seems like it has cool people for the most part (of course there were a couple behemoths that gave me that "I could kil you" looks) and my instructor is really cool, doesn't have anything to prove. He is under Royler Gracie and on Team Megaton (does anyone know anything about Wellington "Megaton" Dias?). I don't care if I am a white belt for the next 20 years I am already having a lot of fun and am goin 3 times a week.
     
  5. Big Red

    Big Red Green Belt

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    That sort of attitude will allow you to go far. Maybe buying a cheap book or reading through websites would be a good idea also if you haven't already. Just to get a step ahead of positions or some moves you may do in the future. What the book will say for example about triangle chokes will perhaps differ from your instructors technique, but reading both before & after I feel aids with progressing the technique.

    Good Luck.
     
  6. Masakatsu Funaki #1

    Masakatsu Funaki #1 Black Belt

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    I see alot of people come to sherdog and always down play white belts when they try something they saw in a match. Dont let those fools mess with your head. If you see something interesting and want to try it out, I say go for it as long as it isnt a high risk for injury type move and it plays by the rules. You'll never get better if you dont experiment, and figure out your own flow. Although this should have been the first sentence of this post, best say it now than never, dont experiment too soon. If you're fresh to grappling, go in with your thinking cap on for atleast a month before you figure out your own flow. I keep on thinking how it was for me back when I started Judo. I was a wrestler previous to it and watched enough MMA/Sub Wrestling to hold my own with anbody they threw at me. Hitting flying armbars and stuff as a white belt...but thats just me. I like to go for broke, as long as nothing is getting broke, you feel me? In fact thats all the advice you need right there:

    "Go for broke, as long as nothing is getting broke."

    Maybe i'll write a book.
     
  7. Masakatsu Funaki #1

    Masakatsu Funaki #1 Black Belt

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    Oh and flying armbars are illegal in Judo, so I am the biggest hypocrite ever. This book will pwn indeed.
     
  8. Hamit Aktas

    Hamit Aktas Amateur Fighter

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    One of the biggest mistake beginners make is that they use WAY to much muscle in BJJ.
    It's their way to compensate for lack of knowledge. It's understandable.
    They tense up and they're like a stiff board the entire time because they don't know what the "opponent" is going to do, and if he does something, you basically don't know how to defend.
    And that makes people tense up. It's actually good for you if you get caught in different submissions and sweeps etc. You'll learn from it and you'll learn to react to different movements of people and you'll know what they are up. Also, being tense and using alot of muscle WILL make you TIRED.
    And then you're screwed either way.

    So, take it EASY. Relax! You are not supposed to use much strength in BJJ. You're there to learn how to use proper technique. The earlier you start with training how to use proper technique, the faster you'll become a better BJJ practitioner.

    It's OK to be submitted. It's training. It's not a competition. You're not there to measure and compare the size of your third leg. So don't get upset, dissapointed or embaressed. You are NEW to this so just roll with it. You'll become better and eventually you'll be submitting other white belts.
    Don't be afraid to ask your instructor for help. I know alot of people have trouble with this. If there is something you dont understand after he showed you something, just call him over and ask him what to do. You're there to learn.

    And here are some other tips I think you should follow.
    Wash your gi after every training session or atleast every other training session (depends on how many classes you take a week). It's much appreciated by the people you train with to not have to withstand the smell of a gi full of your and other guys sweat and blood.

    Clip your toenails so you don't have to cut your training partners. Limbs go everywhere and it's not nice to get a sharp toenail in the face. Even slicing someone foot isn't all that funny or appreciated.

    Last tip:
    Have fun. Just enjoy rolling, learning and hanging out with people with the same interest as you.
    I hope these tips will help you on the way to become a better BJJ:er.

    Take care.
     
  9. b0b

    b0b Banned Banned

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    I can't stress the "relax" advice. The first time I got guillotined, I tensed up like a bitch and my jaw was sore the next day. Halfway through the chocke, I decided to ease up, and it allowed me to breathe better and gave me more time, but I still had to tap.
     
  10. sanuces

    sanuces Orange Belt

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    take it slow
    have fun
    don't spaz
    take your lumps
    don't get frustrated
    attend class reuglarly
    take notes
    read books/watch video(i prefer watching matches)
    buy 2 gi's
    don't get on the mat if you have ringworm

    thats about all the advice ive got
     
  11. TapSD

    TapSD Killer Bee....1%

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    Get your gas up...your gonna be damn tired after you roll the first couple of times and your gonna go.."wow..laying on your back doesnt look so hard on TV" but your stamina will be serverly tested the first time
     
  12. triso

    triso Green Belt

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    Tapping does not equal losing. Try not to let ego get in the way of the learning process. Try different sweeps, escapes, and submissions, and don
     
  13. KarateJoe

    KarateJoe White Belt

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    Thank you to everyone who took the time to reply. I think my biggest problem so far is tensing up, like mentioned, and not keeping my hips loose enough.
     
  14. Gsoares2***

    Gsoares2*** Banned Banned

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    relax, stay limber. Work technical.. Dont just wig out and panic. Stay calm concentrate on breathing if you dont know how to get out of soemthing. Just get used to the positions and pay attention to what the other guys at your gym are telling you. They have been iny our shoes and know how it is....
     
  15. Immolation

    Immolation Green Belt

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    http://www.grapplearts.com/Beginning-Grappling.htm This site will help you. Also if you decide to try new move you saw in the UFC, Pride, book or on a video there is no problem with asking a higher belt. Sometimes they will take the time to explain it to you. Some moves maybe too complicated for a beginner but with the right training and determination you can learn it.
     
  16. VampireMonk

    VampireMonk Black Belt

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    be careful about injuries, there are lots of injuries in BJJ
     
  17. vanguard_anon

    vanguard_anon Clever user title

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    Here are a few random thoughts

    1) Go to class - By far the best move you can do is walking through the front door. You'll see tons of guys start and wash out before you get your blue belt.
    2) Pay attention to the details - When I first learned techniques I'd watch the starting point and the ending point and let the middle go into a fog. Bad idea. Every step is there for a reason, get it right.
    3) Be the kind of person you would want to train with - This means staying controled and not injuring anybody. This means no striking (do I have to say that?). It means coming to class with a clean gi everytime. A breath mint wouldn't hurt either. :)
    4) Don't quit because you're not winning - It's going to be a while before you beat anybody in your class. Don't let your sense of self worth be wrapped up in tapping people. If you're learning you're doing well. Give it 4-6 months, you'll tap somebody.
    5) Roll when you're tired - Getting in shape requires pain, there is no other way to do it. When you're breathing hard and you're tired and class is over in 15 minutes, roll anyway.
    6) Attend class - Worth saying twice.
     
  18. ShadowNINku

    ShadowNINku SANDBAGGER BELT

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    dont be such a pussy and just train dang it.....freaking TUF newbies
     
  19. KarateJoe

    KarateJoe White Belt

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    If you work as a psychic you need to be fired.
     
  20. wOg

    wOg Burien Top Team

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    Brilliant post.

    I'd been training for about six weeks when I had to sit out a week because of a minor injury. I wear glasses so when I'm in class the only thing I can really see is the instructor and my partner. It was eye-opening (no pun intended) to be able to sit on the sidelines even for just a week and actually see what my fellow white belts (and I) were doing during sparring sessions after class compared what the blue and purple belts (especially the latter) were doing.

    The white belts were going at it like two rams. Unbelievable wasted energy! Pushing and pulling and tugging completely without any regard for leverage or using their bodies instead of just their arms. These guys were just killing themselves; it was really something to see. A lot of "wrestling", but very, very little jiu jitsu. I thought, "wow, is this how I look?"

    We'll see what happens tomorrow night when I go back to class, and see if I can act on my little epiphany. But it was a truly eye-opening week.
     

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