A personal view on the benefits of Jiu-Jitsu

People start martial arts for different reasons. Some lack confidence, others have too much of it. Some want to loose weight, others want to gain mass. You might have been bullied in school, or want to be prepared for it. Just in case.

I started doing it when I was 11 years-old. I did not know who Bruce Lee was, and I had no exposure to any kind of Eastern martial arts’ philosophies. I had never heard of the Gracies and MMA did not even exist. I was not a troubled kid, I had never been bullied and, from what I remember, my confidence was alright, albeit being a bit introverted.

From the start, BJJ for me was a sport, like basketball, soccer or rowing. An exercise where you would want to get better at. Being a curious kid, BJJ fit my needs like a glove. I always saw it like a very intricate puzzle: you solve a problem just to find another. It never ends. I wanted to get better because I could not get stuck at a problem and not try to figure out a solution. I always tried to beat the game, not the person.

After a while, I realized that I was not training or fighting everyday, I was playing. During my teenage years, kids from my neighborhood would go out to play with each other. Instead, I soon realized that the mats were far more interesting. It is funny that even after we grow we continue to call ourselves players and not fighters; contrary to any other martial art that I know of.

Even though I like what BJJ brings to my life, the cause-effect relationship is blurred. What happens in my life affects my game big time also. And what I get from my training also affects the way I handle everyday problems. I try to see it as a closed feedback loop, that can spiral up or down.

When my life is wrong, my BJJ suffers. I sleep late, and my training gets worse. I eat crap, and I feel differently when I roll. If something is troubling my mind, I can’t focus so well on my techniques.

So when I see that my BJJ is being disturbed, I take action in my life to correct its course.

It is not that I put BJJ before anything else; but it works as a thermometer that tells me whether my life is being well lived or not. I am sure that other activities might work the same way for other people. Yet I doubt it would be just as fun.

Despite all the different reasons, people start martial arts because they need to fulfill a certain need. Which need it is matters very little actually.

What matters is that you will live a life enjoying the benefits of being a fighter. What you will become might surprise you. But you will never regret the choice you’ve made.

Book your private class with Prof. Bruno Fernandes at Gracie Barra BJJ Montreal now.