Jiu-Jitsu Tip of the Week Record It
Over the course of Jiu-Jitsu’s history, there have been two huge contributing factors for its exponential growth. The first one being Royce Gracie’s participation in the early iterations of the UFC. The fact that this innocuous looking man was able to beat the other styles, made Americans and better yet the world at large pay attention to Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.
The second being YouTube and the Internet specifically
YouTube bridged the knowledge gap between the belts and more importantly, the distance between academies. There used to be a time when you would have to hunt down VHS tapes that covered techniques that you were interested in. Schools often kept their most valued techniques private, only revealing them at competitions against other academies.
The ability to look up nearly any technique that you’re curious about, has fueled the art’s evolution. It’s created a think tank of sorts, where we can tinker with techniques and put them under a microscope for further evaluation. Danaher for example, can share some details of a technique that sparks an idea in a Blue Belt’s brain half a world away, creating the next evolutionary wave.
The way Jiu-Jitsu has flourished in large part due to YouTube and the internet, is how it can flourish for yourself.
How often have you been taught a technique that you intended to remember and practice, but you forget key details or the entire thing altogether? You intend to at least write it down at some point but forget. Getting into the habit of doing that is difficult and at time consuming. One of the best things you can do is just record the technique and review it at a later date. If you’re organized enough, you’ll upload them to YouTube or your own personal hard drive, named and cataloged for easy retrieval.
This is actually where I’ve found the greatest payoff. Roughly once a month, I set up my little mini tripod, press record on my phone, and roll with as many people as I can. Open Mats are the best times to do this. Your set up won’t be as intrusive, since this kind of a class is more of an informal setting. When I do this, I make sure I roll with as many different kinds of people as possible. I roll with the person that uses a ton of strength, the heavier guy, the one that use overwhelming speed, and more importantly, the one that seems to beat me regularly.
I want to see the things that work, but more importantly what doesn’t. I want to be able to break down where I went wrong. Was it where I placed my weight, did I miss a grip, or was my approach correct but my opponent’s reaction unfamiliar to me?
In the event that I don’t know what I did wrong or how to deal with a specific reaction, the recording gives me the option of forwarding that to an instructor or friend. I can give them the time stamp of the video and ask them what my response should have been.
It’s really easy to miss details when you’re rolling. There have been times when a teammate that I just got done rolling with will ask me about a sequence, but it happen so fast I couldn’t remember it step by step. With the ability to record it, I can always play it back, study a sequence frame by frame.
Last Thoughts on Jiu-Jitsu Tip – Recording Yourself
How serious or how often you want to do this is completely up to you, but getting into the habit of recording yourself is going to pay dividends. The setup is a small monetary investment, but most importantly it’s a great way to honestly asses yourself.
I would love to hear if anyone else does this, or of any of you have any other tips for growth.