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Five Things To Do During Rolling!



The act of rolling (or sparring in BJJ for you newbies) is one of the most important aspects of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. It is one of the reasons why Jiu Jitsu works. Unlike most traditional arts (such as Aikido, TKD, ect) that focus on theories and doing techniques on compliant partners with no resistance, there is no room for nonsense in the art. Every valid technique that is learned can work in a live situation, depending on how you drill it and how you use it in rolling. Rolling is essential for Jiu Jitsu training, and here are five things you can do to make the most of that time…

5) Put Yourself In Unfamiliar Spots

During rolling, you will eventually get paired up with someone that is a lower belt or has less experience than you. This is the time to put yourself in spots that are unfamiliar to you. Not exactly comfortable with your half guard? Pull it and work some techniques. Having a hard time holding someone down in side control? Once again, try it. This way, you can become better in the spots that you need to work on.

4) Put Yourself In Bad Spots

This point is similar to the one before it, but just as important. Once again, if you are paired with someone you know you can beat, put yourself in a bad spot or two. Let your guard get passed and work regaining that position. Let your partner get mount on you and try an escape. When you do this, your escapes will get better not only in technique, but in timing and if it does happen in competition, you will not panic and you will be able to get back to where you succeed at.

3) Try New Techniques

Rolling is the perfect place to try out new techniques in a live situation. Is there a technique that your instructor showed in class, but you haven’t gotten to really use it yet? This is the time to try it. Even if you can’t exactly pull off a certain sweep or get the tap from a new choke/submission, keep at it. You will eventually get your timing down to apply it correctly!

2) Know When To Bring Your A Game

I’ve talked about what to do against lower belts with less experience, but what higher belts with much more experience? That is the time to bring your A game and see what you can do. Go to where you are most comfortable, and try to impose what you do best. I’m not saying you will be tapping higher belts all of a sudden, but you will see all of your movements and techniques get much tighter and improve.

1) Have Fun & Leave The Ego

Some people take rolling too far. They act as if it is the world championships, and take it far too seriously. You’ll see people that wont tap to a submission or a choke, or they will do such things such as slamming or digging nails into skin. Don’t be that kind of partner in rolling. When rolling, you need to leave your ego off the mat. Rolling is a time where you will learn. You shouldn’t be afraid to tap if you cannot get out of a submission. This way, you won’t get hurt and you can ask what happened, so it doesn’t happen again, or at least as much.

If you follow these five points, you will improve yourself through rolling. Learning new techniques and drilling are fun, but rolling with your training partners will not only make you better at Jiu Jitsu, but it will make your partners better as well. Take a chance to view rolling not only as a time to test yourself, but to learn as well. This way you can get the most out of your training. Oss!


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