Body Types and Jiu-Jitsu

Body Types and Jiu-Jitsu

Should I study Jiu-Jitsu from people with different body types than mine?

Practitioners who study jiu-jitsu will wisely spend it watching people who are around the same height and size as themselves. It makes sense to spend time watching people who are relevant to your size because the techniques they utilize don’t require modification. But is it worth spending time watching someone from a different weight class than you?

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Of course it is. A flyweight can learn plenty by watching a powerhouse like Roberto “Cyborg” Abreu, just like an ultra-heavyweight can pick up tips from Bruno Malfacine.  A lot can be learned about the overall game of Jiu-Jitsu by immersing yourself in the many strategies and approaches that are around. This can help the overall evolution of the art.

Speaking of Cyborg, enjoy a little highlight and watch how he moves like he is not 222 lbs.

Typically, lighter weights are more likely to pull guard than say heavyweights. That doesn’t mean that it doesn’t happen at higher weights, it’s just less likely. A larger practitioner can pick up some details from watching these lighter weights and their swift guard pulls. Perhaps if they encounter someone their size and they have an advantage in the standup battle a guard strategy they picked up from Malfacine. On the flip side if you encounter a heavyweight guard puller, now maybe you can have some additional ideas on how to handle the situation presented to you.

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Variety is one of the keys to longevity when it comes to training Jiu-Jitsu. By continuing to spice up training and not rely on your “A” game you can start to get a more well-rounded approach to BJJ. Sticking to your A game can be great when preparing for competition, but when you are not worried about competition experimenting with other styles of attack and defense will just add more tools to you tool belt. You can always revert back to your main game when it’s time for competition training, but hopefully you can approach camp with some fresh ideas and techniques.

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