Improve Your Submission Rate With One Tip From John Danaher
John Danaher...Dropping More Knowledge
One important aspect of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu that I appreciate the most is that to be successful in submitting a skilled opponent, I have to seize any potential opponent that presents itself. Most new practitioners go about trying to force the few submissions that they are relatively good at. However, this is not possible at the highest levels because grapplers become very skilled at defending every submission you attack.
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The ability to seize opportunities in Jiu Jitsu requires a mental clarity in an almost meditative like state that takes advantages of when opponent’s make mistakes. In fact, when people discuss Jiu Jitsu as a form of meditation, this is what they mean. If one has to think about what move to attack next, they will have spent too much time thinking and will be usually too late.
In a recent Instagram post, Professor John Danaher provides a philosophical explanation for the need to be able to seize opportunities. He opens his post by saying “You cannot take an opportunity until you see an opportunity.” What Professor Danaher is trying to say is that in order to take advantages of the mistake’s opponents mistake, one has to recognize the nature of the mistake and what attacks are possible based off of it.
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Vampires: A crucial lesson in Jiu Jitsu and in life is this - You cannot TAKE an opportunity until you SEE an opportunity. All day every day we all have incredible opportunities on and off the mat go right past us and we simply don’t see them for what they are. In a moment the opportunity is gone and lost forever. Only when your MIND identifies an opportunity can your physical body step up and act upon it. In this sense a BIG part of getting submissions in Jiu Jitsu is mental - it begins with the mental action of recognition of opportunity. Every day I coach I see fleeting openings for submission that pass most people by. We all need to train our minds in VIGILANCE TO OPPORTUNITY and the CONFIDENCE TO ACT UPON IT. Increasing your finishing rates is NOT just a matter of developing physical skills. You can have all the arm lock skills in the world, but if you don’t recognize an opportunity for an arm lock when it’s in front of you, you won’t even ATTEMPT it, let alone succeed with it. You all know that i put an extraordinarily heavy emphasis on strangulation. A big part of success is a CONSTANT FOCUS ON THE NECK AS A TARGET. I train my students to see the world like vampires. When a vampire walks into a crowded room he does not see a hundred PEOPLE, he see a hundred NECKS. So too on the mat - WHEN YOU WANT TO WORK YOUR STRANGLES - train yourself to see NOTHING BUT NECKS. You will be amazed to see how your success rate will improve with only a change in mentality... 📸 @behr_dan
So how does one train this specific element of Jiu Jitsu? Well it is rather difficult and is something that naturally arises from experience. There is however, one method to help improve the rate at which you get better.
In order to become thoughtless in our attacks and responses, we have to train the techniques to the extent that they become ingrained to a subconscious level. This requires grapplers to train specific techniques technically, mindfully, and quickly. Rather than spending a minute between repetitions talking, you should be moving so quickly that your training looks entirely like drilling.
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Professor Danaher closes of his post with a notion that grapplers should be looking at each part of our opponent’s bodies as submission opportunities. People are combination of necks, arms, and legs, that can be seen as an opportunity for strangles, arm locks, and leg locks.
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