Slap. Bump. Go.
Nothing else matters — your worries, insecurities, your fears.
Your being has reduced to one moment, this moment.
You walked into the academy stressed out. The moment you stepped on the mat, you let it all go. (It’ll all be there when you step off.)
You’ve got a 200-pound man in front of you trying to take your head off.
A smile on his face.
Stay out of your head, release the layers — the resistance, the tension.
Flow with it. Your technique grounds it all.
In this space, thoughts are not needed. Stay in this moment. Be here, now.
Observe your breathing. Is it short, shallow, or choppy?
Deep breaths from the diaphragm. Breathe through your nose as much as you can.
Foster an energy of openness, playfulness, and creativity.
Opportunities begin to come your way with ease.
When those openings show themselves, welcome short bursts of intensity.
Absorb the energy of your partner, then extend that to the entire room.
Feel the pressure of their body and relinquish any resistance to it in the mind. Move.
You might be thinking, this sounds counterintuitive for a martial art.
Shouldn’t we be forceful and aggressive? Asserting our dominance?
Jiu Jitsu is about taking your opponent’s energy and redirecting it against them.
This makes it particularly appealing to smaller humans and among the best for self-defense, and also explains why the term “Jiu Jitsu” translates into “the gentle art.”
The fundamentals involve the proper amount of leverage and a fulcrum. Force and intensity come into play when you’ve taken the time to secure those two. And this force should last for mere seconds before you go back into a relaxed state.
Try approaching a roll with 100% intensity the entire time and see what happens.
You’ll most likely feel gassed out at the 3-minute mark.
Go rabbit mode, sprinting and unleashing all your weapons at once — or go tortoise mode, grounded, moving with intention and keeping a steady pace.
At the end of the day, the choice is yours.