getting frustarated


White Belt
Jul 3, 2002
Reaction score
I have been pretty frustarated with juijitsu lately.

I train in Tallahassee, FL. There is no real black belt school here, just some guys who are blue/purple belt level. We rent out mat space at a local kung fu school. I train about three to four times a week. Along with more advanced guys we get alot of kids from FSU who come over to check it out. Its mostly no-gi.

The training environment is more of a training hall/open mat kind of atmosphere. There is not that much structure. We all warm up together and then everyone kind of breaks off and does what they want. Some drill, some of them will spar, etc. For someone like me who needs a lot of technical breakdown and detail its perhaps not the best place, but its the only game in town.

My problem is lately i have just been getting beaten by guys who should not be beating me. I have been training consistently for three years here. I am not the most natural athlete but i feel i am doing ok. Then occsionally someone will come in who has no prior experience, and in six months will be more or less even with me. There is a guy in there who about the same size as me, but is ungodly strong and just one of those natural athletes. He says he has not trained before, just likes to watch alot of UFC and mess around with his friends.

I try not to let it bother me when i get beat by a less experienced person, but when it comes down to it that is how one measures progress, by who you can compete with on the mat. If i have been doing this three years i hate to think i am only at the level of someone who has been doing it six months. I think part of it may also be that i personally need a more structured environment with drills, warm ups, and an experienced teacher to help with stuff. Its going in to train with no direction, there is only so much i can come up with on my own.

My plan is to move to Portland, OR at the end of the summer, so hopefully i will find some good schools there.

There is the Portland Brazillian Jujitsu Academy in Oregon which i have been told is pretty good. There is also a good jujitsu academy in Astoria, Oregon run by Nick Unander-Scharin...If you decide to stay in Tallahassee all i can tell you is that if there are really no schools within an hour drive to stick with instructionals until you finally move somewhere...
Also dont get too frustrated when guys come in and workout for six months and get on an even keel with you...this guy from what you said was exceptionally strong and a natural athlete so he will pick up things quicker then you will...the fact that you are even with a guy that is strong like that and an athlete like that probably will tell you more about how good you are then anything else...just keep working with it...just try not to get burnt out or overthink it too much...stick with the instructionals from Barnes and Noble or the instructional Bas Ruttens MMA Workout so that you get your stamina real smooth and you'll see results...
Bust out some gi training. That will likely sharpen up your technique and open your mind ...

Strong guys are always real hard to deal with though -- even more so in no-gi than gi. The closer you get to pure wrestling, the more dominant conditioning and athleticism becomes as the controlling factor.
Thanks for the replies guys. I will keep that stuff in mind and keep on working.

Cool to hear about the Portland BJJ Academy. Do you have a link or a phone number by any chance? I could not find anything online. I know Team Quest is out there, as well as the Straight Blast Gym. I was hoping for some more choices, just in case i live far away from those two or they are to expensive.

I was thinking more about my sparring session tonight, which is when i got beat by that guy. I had some good solid submission attempts. A few triangles, a kimura, and a head and arm choke when in the half guard. This guy was just one of those that is really hard to submit, and i lacked that extra bit of strength at the end to really crank a submission. The times i got tapped were my own stupid fault. I left my arm out for a kimura, and when going for the Old School sweep i would get it but end up in side mount my head guillotined. I would go to move around to North-South, but he would just keep cranking the thing, and i did not think to post off his face to get him to let go. When i got to North-South eventually he would roll me and then just crank the choke till i thought my jaw was gonna bust.

My conditioning actually feels pretty good. Its my strength and athleticism that are not as good.
you're facing a meathead move. you should have met this with technique and easily escaped with a forearm post on his throat. he's cranking your neck so you post your forearm off his neck and pull up. the harder he holds, the more pressure he recieves on his neck. your other hand should be pulling on his wrist to loosen his grip. add a knee on belly because he will be focussed elsewhere.

from this escape you need to go right into the knee-on-belly to sidemount armbar. your hand on his wrist slides up to curl his elbow to your chest as your head comes out, and your forearm on his neck posts and you use your hand to post and push down his head. and you know the rest--armbar.

this is all basic stuff you should know after 3 years. if you choose not to drill this stuff into instict then it wont be. if you just go out and roll, you'll get decent mat cardio. if you dont drill then your technique suffers.

you dont need to be messing with eddie bravo half guard if your bread n butter basics are lacking. you're rolling with guys who have been on the mat for a few months so they probably dont know that stuff anyways so scoring with it doesn't mean too much just as besting someone below you doesnt mean much-- you havent *improved.*

work on stuff you know they know how to defend. you score with it and it's valid.

also, eat a bowl of strawberries an hour before you hit the mats. when you're not eating right, your performance will be total shit, make you feel like shit mentally and question your game. you can usually kill a plateau with something as high-benifit as a bowl of strawberries. eat that and drink a smart amount of water on the hour every hour you're awake if you plan to roll. car runs like shit when sucking fumes without fuel -- man does too.
keep training , jiujitsu will always test how much you love it, kinda like a woman.
just think of the flipside how good youll feel when you have a good day, progression is a buzz that lasts for days. youll catch yourself telling the guy at the gas station, "dude, my omaplata sweep is SIICK!!!!!!"

keep training , she loves you, shes just being a bitch
Yea, i do need to work more on drilling technique. Thats one of the things that is lacking where i train, there is no structure or format. I know what i need to work on, so i usually grab someone and start drilling, but there are times when i feel i could benefit from some guidance and structure. Hopefully when i move and can go to a real school i can fix all that.
I agree about drilling the basics & using them as your bread & butter in sparring.

I see no problem with using a few more advanced moves like Bravo's half-guard sweeps. You will almost always end up in half guard, use what you know to improve your posistion. Just don't jump into half guard or try to pull off anything too advanced that will get you mounted, etc. If you are rolling with meathead wrestler types, the only advantages you have are knowing more techniques, and training longer & harder.