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Ideas on Jiu Jitsu Age
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Ideas on Jiu Jitsu Age

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Reflections on time spent training.

Has anyone else noticed that some practitioners get strange when talking about their Jiu Jitsu age? Like a high school kid trying to buy beer, the math gets funny. The conversation usually goes something like this. “I have been training 5 years and I am a {fill in the blank} belt. “

“Are you sure, I have been here 6 years and you were a student here before me.”

“Well, I took off for 8 months. This was partly because of an injury. And then I was inconsistent for another year.  So if you do the math…”

I do not understand the need for fuzzy math. As a professional with a wife and kids, my training time is limited. It is sacred and I train consistently, but I don’t round off years for injury or other life events.

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I am to the point in my Jiu Jitsu journey where I don’t even care to discuss age. Like a group of elderly people in a nursing home, it seems to be a conversation of little value.  It definitely seems foolish to do some kind of strange calculus on how long I have been training as a way to inflate a Jiu Jitsu pedigree.

I understand the question at the white belt or even blue belt level.  At the beginner level, most of us are curious on how long it will take to advance. Yet, it seems for any experienced practitioner there are so many better goals to set or conversations to be had. At some point, the belt becomes a byproduct; a testament to others, what my friends and training partners already know.

After all, a good gym is like a family. You know who the old school guys are. You know who the gym prodigies are. You know who you’re close enough to talk trash with. You know who you can roll with to get repetitions in. You know who you can roll with to get ideas to expand your game. You know who the weekend warriors are. You know who the EBI and ADCC veterans are. At that point, your training age become silly, at best, because there are so many more profound things you can say about all of them.

UFC analyst and first black belt in Mexico, Mario Delgado has partnered with BJJ Fanatics to share his No Gi Formula to help grapplers of all ages to be more successful in their No Gi jiu jitsu.  You can get it here at BJJ Fanatics!

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