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Rise Of The Conceptual Learner In Jiu Jitsu

The ultimate goal in any art is to articulate what is in your mind into physical form – to honestly express yourself through a creation or performance.

In relation to Brazilian Jiu Jitsu this would NOT be by rehearsing rigid forms and patterns as responses to situations. Instead, it would entail ‘in the moment’ innovations. This approach allows one to remain fluid and deal with any situations that arise in ways that are both unpredictable and intelligent.

To drill something into muscle memory to the point where you don’t need to think but just react is to become entrapped by that technique. And to chase perfect technique is like a dog chasing its tail around in circles.

You won’t get it, It does NOT exist. There is NO perfect technique, as much as you would wish there to be.

Perfect technique belongs in a craft that is finite in its shape and movements and jiu jitsu could not be further from that. To use rigid, memorised movements in a game that is a changing, evolving organism is crazy. Why some place so much emphasis on technique and muscle memory instead of timing and innovation baffles me. It may continue to work in this current era in BJJ. And yes, many will still win comps and world championships by imposing your will upon others. But there is an evolution taking place.

People in the jiu jitsu community are seeking a higher understanding. The old paradigm will soon fade away. By following the old path you will never articulate yourself and express yourself honestly. You will be merely performing a rehearsed dance routine, when instead could have learned to feel the music and move to the rhythm of your own drum beat. One that is yours and no one else’s. One that is a true expression of yourself.

 In the end you have to ask yourself: What do you want? Do you want to be a man full of thousands of techniques burned into your muscle memory, awaiting selection? Or a instead a man who has internalised all the fundamentals and concepts and is as Bruce Lee would say an honest expression of himself, able to adapt like a shapeshifter and move freely in any which way he so desires. And most importantly develop a fundamental understanding of jiu jitsu that far exceeds anyone learning through repetition. The choice is yours.

 Kit Dale

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