How many people reading this would like to become really good at Jiu-Jitsu? I would guess if you are reading this you do.
Step 1: You need to define what you think of as good? Is your idea of good to be a Black Belt World Champion? Or is your idea of good to reach Black Belt. Or maybe your idea of good is to achieve your Blue Belt. Or maybe it is simply to beat that one guy who has been beating on you since day one of training.
You see everyone has different definition of what good is. So I think deciding what you definition of being good is important.
Step 2: Finding the right school. You probably are currently training in Jiu-Jitsu if you are reading this. But make sure your Gym has a few of these qualities. Who is the Black belt that is the head coach? Who did he receive his Black Belt from? I think staying as close to the source of Gracie/Machado instruction is important.
Did your coach ever compete? If so at what level? This is important but not an end all. There are a few people who coach at a high level that never competed. And there are lots of guys who competed who should never coach.
Step 3: Do you take notes? I have notes on training that go up until Purple Belt. Detailed long binders that took years to fill up. There is something about putting your thoughts down that helps put them into long term memory.
Step 4: Are you honest with yourself? What this means are you honest with yourself about your training? Are you the guy that tries to roll with the best guys in class? Or are you the guy that only wants to train with white belts so that you never lose. This is perhaps one of the hardest steps. Because it requires you to look in the mirror and be honest with yourself? Are you are putting in a 100% effort everyday that your train!
Step 5: How often do you train? Now there are people who have to travel/work out of town. Are you working out on the road? At this point in time there is Jiu-Jitsu in every major city in America. So not training because you are out of town isn't really a excuse. Now there are always exceptions to this rule but most people can work it into there schedule. I personally think you should be training 4-6 times a week.
Conclusion: Everyone has different goals when it comes to your training. That is the really cool thing about Jiu-Jitsu. You have World Champions that train beside and with guys who have no desire to ever compete. So make sure you take a honest look at what you want from your training and set out to achieve your goals. Jiu-Jitsu is a amazing community of martial artist. See you on the mat!
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