If you want to learn a martial art that is truly a great self-defense sport, jiu-jitsu is a fantastic choice. It combines many different forms of martial arts and can boost your self-confidence. However, everyone has to start somewhere!
Everybody has a first day. All jiu-jitsu practitioners have that moment when their feet hit the mats for the first time. Some people have that moment when they are five, and some have it when they are 50. Some first-timers have a lot of confidence and eagerness on their first days, and other people set that first foot on the mats with a lot of worry and fear. Either way, there are some things that we wish we had known when we started jiu-jitsu.
In today’s blog, we want to share some of the insights that we would have liked to know when taking our first jiu-jitsu classes.
What All Newbies Should Know About BJJ
What should I get out of the warm-up?
- BJJ warmups are pretty unique. Though they vary depending on the school, they generally include bridges, breakfalls, and hip escapes. The warm-up exercises have two main jobs:
- To act as the foundation of technical work. There are some movements that show up in a lot of different jiu-jitsu moves. For instance, the bridge can be used in both a sweep and an umpa, so it’s a good idea strengthen and train the muscles used to make it happen.
- To get BJJ movement patterns into the body. One of the biggest hurdles that beginners face is using their bodies as single units. Warm-ups help make this happen.
- A key thing to remember is this: it is normal to feel tired during warmups. Your body is learning the unique movement patterns that make BJJ happen, and many people are surprised at how cardio-intense BJJ actually is. Just do what you can and be patient with your adjusting body.
How intense should I get about the details?
- The answer you get to this question changes depending on which instructor you’re talking to. However, no matter who your instructor may be, when you’re a BJJ beginner, there’s a ton going on. It’s a lot to take in. In fact, it can be like learning a new language.
- If you’re struggling with all the details, we recommend you just focus on mastering the positioning. Get a sense for what BJJ positions feel like when you’re in them correctly. Once you get these basics set, it will be easier to start adding in the details.
How Often Should I Train?
- When you’re diving into something new, it can be tempting to want to train every day. Doing as much as possible will make you better faster, right? Though this might work for some sports, it isn’t the best strategy for BJJ. jiu-jitsu is a marathon, not a sprint. Here are two things to keep in mind when it comes to determining what training frequency will work for you.
- Your training frequency may not look like others’. You’ll tire out and likely injure yourself if you train too often, but if you don’t train enough, you may slow your progress way down. At the end of the day, you need to find the pace you can keep up for a significant amount of time. Try not to be too affected by the way that those around you train and find your own path.
- Look at your recovery. We just said a bunch about determining your own training pace, but how exactly do you figure it out? The answer is how long it takes you to recover from a single class. Because BJJ is a skill built over years and not months, you don’t need to be a huge hurry. Instead, figure out the pace that allows you to recover from each session before you go into the next one.
Try Infinity Martial Fitness
The beauty of jiu-jitsu is its accessibility. Many people are surprised by the age range they see on the mats. Making the most of your fitness and your life as a whole is totally possible when you turn to jiu-jitsu. This is a martial art that will take your body and mind to a new level. You will gain more endurance, flexibility, and strength. Most of all, we hope you gain a community.
While training and facilities both play a big part in whether or not people keep training, the one factor that makes the biggest difference is the community. You need to feel accepted, welcomed, and supported. At Infinity Martial Fitness, we are proud to provide a community of great people who just want to get better every time they practice. We look forward to meeting you in our Lebanon jiu-jitsu classes soon!