For most Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is one of the most enjoyable activities in life. It’s a not just a sport or martial arts but a vehicle for personal evolution, you improve your body, mind and spirit.
But like all activities, a life of the Jiu Jitiero has its ups and downs. There will be times that you feel more tired, times when your technical level plateaus and doesn’t grow at the same pace as it once did, and who’s forgetting injuries… contrary to popular belief among the community simply “just taping it” sometimes isn’t suffice to keep on rolling.
All of this is normal however, but you can’t let these setbacks hinder your progress in the sport, many practitioners have been lost to injury and never seen again. So check out these tips to keep your motivation up while you’re on the mats.
Staying Motivated in Jiu-Jitsu
Set a Goal. As with any area in life, in BJJ having a goal is the best way to keep motivated, even on your most difficult days. Whether it’s looking forward to a competition you’ve booked, a training holiday that is upcoming or focusing on a specific technique for periods of time. Making sure you your goals are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Timely. Simply having the goal of becoming a Black Belt World Champion isnt enough, you will need to break it down a LOT. Personally, when it comes to BJJ my goals are set out monthly. It works well for me, give it a try.
Talk with some of your training partners. Especially if you have similar levels and the same goals. One will always motivate the other in difficult times.
It may seem to be counter-intuitive but if you feel that your body is asking for a break, listen to it, I really should take my own advice, A few days off will not hinder your progress, and you will come back more motivated than ever.
Nutrition is key to recovery and longevity on the mats, take care of your diet and your diet will take care of you. In some cases, the lack of energy comes from a diet with high amounts of fats and sugars. Your mood can change dramatically with a balanced and healthy diet.
Adjust your training times to suit your schedule, if you can find a willing partner to train first thing in the morning, then no matter what else happens that day you would have already achieved your daily session anything more is an added bonus. If you train after work, try not to miss training and avoid where possible going home before going to the gym. The comfort of home can be tempting on cold days, or if you’re already feeling discouraged, a comfy sofa only strengthens that feeling.
Never slip into your comfort zone. Easy rolls and your A game isn’t going to challenge your Jiu-Jitsu. Seek out the hardest training partners and if you’re training with someone who is at a lower level, work on new positions.
And if you ever need a little boost, just remember a day off the mats is a day your competitors and training partners are at Jiu-jitsu getting better than you. Use that as motivation to keep training hard.