It’s great that you’ve made the choice to slip on the gi, but now that you’ve signed up, what can you expect? You probably have images of yourself flipping around on the mat, doing chokes, and dislocating arms. Well, it’s not really like that. You will learn to do armbars, and chokes, but good luck actually doing it while rolling when you just started out.
However, as a newbie, you WILL be on the receiving end of plenty of chokes and armbars. Which brings us to point number one.
If you don’t pay attention to anything else in this article, at least follow this one. More people give up on BJJ because they can’t handle being tapped out. And as a Jiu Jitsu beginner, you’ll be tapped out. A lot. A WHOLE lot. There’s probably a rule of nature that says you can’t learn a technique and use it effectively until you’ve been tapped out by it at least a thousand times. There is no shame in tapping. It’s how you learn.
While we all (hopefully) shower every day, Jiu Jitsu requires a little more diligence. You’re in very close proximity to another person while your rolling, and whatever germs you have can easily be spread onto your partner. So keep clean. You don’t want staph or ringworm, both of which are easy to catch. And keep your nails clipped short. Jiu Jitsu should not involve scratches.
It’s a common joke that white belts try to force the moves while they are rolling with someone. This is ineffective. You will just tire yourself out. Slow down, and look for the right move. You’ll know it’s the right move, because it will require almost no effort at all. This isn’t wrestling, there’s no reason to rush. After you see how easy it can be, you’re game will improve drastically almost over night.
There are plenty of other tips I could give you as well – such as don’t ever wash your gi in bleach, it will eventually eat through it- but these three will benefit the super-new practitioner best. Keep them in mind as you practice, and it will help.
And remember, for the best place to learn Jiu Jitsu in Fredericksburg, you have to go to the Lab MMA.