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Three Pieces of Advice for New Students
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Three Pieces of Advice for New Students

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New students approach Jiu Jitsu in many different ways. Some students quickly become obsessed with Jiu Jitsu and attend every class possible and try to roll with everyone. Other students are more inhibited and even fearful and need motivation and support from existing academy members.

Neither of those two kinds of student are good or bad. At the end of the day, they are both training and improving their lives, which is what matters. Regardless of the approach, every student experiences the feeling of novelty and awkwardness associated with being a new student, and that is just part of it as there is no way to avoid it.

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In this article, I wanted to discuss three common mistakes new students make that can slow down their progress and even single them out as bad team member.

The first piece of advice is to focus on the fundamentals. Build up your closed guard skill before building other guards. Work your simple submissions to perfection because they will continue work till black belt if you do. This is why Roger Gracie can tap the best black belts with cross choke from mount. Im not saying ignore everything else, but make sure you have solid fundamentals.

The next thing is to drill everything perfectly. If you don’t practice to practice perfectly, you will maintain that bad habit for the remainder of your Jiu Jitsu life. Drilling perfectly requires practice, but if you develop that mindset, you will become a great grappler in the long run. Furthermore, if you make mistakes while drilling, you definitely will make those same mistakes while rolling or competing.

Finally, my last piece of advice is to relax and slow down while rolling. This one can be hard to apply but it is a skill that must be mastered for a variety of reasons. First, its good practice for scenarios of self-defense where you need to remain to in order to effectively subdue an aggressor. Second, its important because it will help you properly execute the moves you learn in class.

I hope you enjoyed this short piece the difficulties of being a new student. Maybe you have already been doing these things, but if you haven’t, I urge you do so because it can drastically improve your current and future abilities.


John Danher is one of the few people to have athletes be successful at the highest levels in both Professional Grappling as well as MMA. He has systemized his approach to teaching,learning,and APPLYING his Jiu-Jitsu. Enter the System with John Danaher!

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