The Importance of Learning Jiu-Jitsu for Self-Defense
Jiu-Jitsu was created as a self-defense system. But just like many Martial Arts there eventually becomes a time when they can turn more into a sport than a Self-Defense system. This seems to be a natural progression with many Martial Arts. Judo, Wrestling, Tae Kwon Do, and even Karate. Most of these changed to become an Olympic sport. But, in doing so some have lost their true purpose and have become more sport and less Martial Art.
Sport Jiu-jitsu has become very popular since i started training BJJ. I remember when there was maybe four local Jiu-jitsu tournaments a year. Now there is Jiu-jitsu tournament every month. These tournaments bring in thousands of competitors. There are also professional BJJ matches where you get paid to compete. Absolutely unheard of when i began. I love how popular Jiu-jitsu has become. It’s progression of turning into a sport has created a lack of self-defense knowledge.
Training BJJ with strikes
Most people that practice Jiu-jitsu rarely practice with strikes. So, of course most of those people are unsure on how to defend strikes. Self-Defense situations are typically going to have strikes involved. If you have never trained with punches and kicks it’s going to be an eye opening experience. Not only realizing how much you lack in knowledge of defending strikes while grappling but also how uncomfortable and panicked you can get. Training Jiu-jitsu with strikes is the best thing you can do for yourself. You’ll be able to train the feeling of being in a real fight while seeing what Jiu-Jitsu you can actually pull off in a fight.
Learning to find the comfort in uncomfortable situations
The other important reason for training Jiu-jitsu for Self-Defense is to practice in bad positions and situations. Practicing in these scenarios will increase your comfort level when actually faced with a real life situation. Sometimes when training for fun or sport you don’t get in compromising situations. If you do, you always know you can tap to get out of those situations. In real life tapping out doesn’t exist. Practice Jiu-Jitsu as if its a life or death situation. Put yourself in bad positions or uncomfortable situations and find your calm within those scenarios. If you don’t train in high pressure situations with real life consequences than you are only learning Jiu-Jitsu for sport.
How to plan out your Jiu-Jitsu training
I don’t believe all of your Jiu-Jitsu training has to be Self-Defense. I think you can train Jiu-Jitsu for fun, sport, and Self-defense. But, i think some of your training should always consist of some self-defense and mental practice. Train Jiu-jitsu for whatever reasons you want. For fun. For sport. To meet people. But, always dedicate some of your training to self-defense. Otherwise you are giving yourself the false sense of security that you can defend yourself properly. I understand that self-defense training isn't maybe as exciting as training for sport reasons. Nevertheless it is absolutely necessary to understand and be proficient in your self-defense. Practice with punches and practice in bad situations. Find the comfort in being uncomfortable. These training habits will ensure if a real life self-defense situation comes up you are well trained mentally and physically to handle it.