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Applying Principles To Your Jiu-jitsu

Applying Principles To Your Jiu-jitsu

Most of us start our learning jiu-jitsu by focusing on developing our sports specific jiu-jitsu muscles and conditioning and learning the basic techniques. Especially during the blue belt period of learning Brazilian jiu-jitsu, many students accumulate and drill vast numbers of sweeps, submissions and escapes. We could compare this phase to learning a language and building your vocabulary.

Some students develop a strong game based around their favorite positions and they thoroughly understand all of the aspects of their specialities. As we progress higher in our learning of jiu-jitsu we understand that getting really good is not a matter of accumulating more and more moves.
Or even learning “secret” moves to catch our opponents by surprise.

We begin to look at the principles of jiu-jitsu (see the article “Got Jiu?”) and applying to HOW we apply those techniques that we already know. read also on Gracie Barra : Got Jiu?

What do we mean by applying “principles”?

If we understand the WHY behind applying a technique, we may transfer that principle to ALL of our techniques, magnifying their effectiveness. Let’s look at an example: Escaping the headlock on the ground.

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There are certain principles we apply to that specific technique
1) Use frames to prevent your opponent from applying their weight and pressure on top of you
2) Use a bridge to create some room to move your hips
3) Use a hip escape or shrimp to create space and a proper angle to allow us to trap the opponent with our legs
4) Place your limbs in a safe position to prevent submission attempts from even starting
5) Use the principle of action / reaction to setup the proper timing for your technique

Now these ideas are applicable to ALL escapes on the ground!  Instead of learning 50 different escapes – our existing escapes are dramatically improved once we understand these fundamental principles of escape.
These 5 principles apply to escaping from ALL bad positions in jiu-jitsu!

The same goes for submissions, sweeps and takedowns. Ask your professor how you can apply principles to your existing techniques to bring them to a whole new level of effectiveness!

read also on Gracie Barra : Is your Jiu-jitsu efficient?

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Credits: Mark Mullen 
Gracie Barra Black belt based in Saigon, Vietnam
Twitter: @MarkMullenBJJ

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