Jiu Jitsu on its Knees

Jiu Jitsu on its knees.

Never before has Jiu Jitsu faced such a powerful opponent capable of keeping us practically immobilized, giving us very few options to defend ourselves — even the possible options are not very effective.

In the world of Boxing we could use the metaphor of being up against the ropes but seeing as Jiu Jitsu is our beloved sport, let’s take our imagination onto the mat. Imagine our opponent has our back with the hooks in and a hand at the bottom of our collar — the situation is critical, and any mistake can lead to imminent defeat.

We learned early on (or at least we should have learned) that in a difficult situation we must remain calm and focus on technique — we have to focus on what is possible and avoid reacting from instinct. We must also avoid expending unnecessary energy as this alone can give us precious time.

Once we’re aware, we can see the way out! We try, but it doesn’t work — we need to remain even calmer and deal with the frustration of the failure of the first attempt. We try another technique, it doesn’t work. Our opponent is really tough.

We don’t know how long that choke will take, is our opponent getting tired? Are his grips loosening? (We’ve all been in positions that seemed favourable and turned out not to be, could that be the case?) Should we continue to waste energy? No, we can’t wear ourselves out, we have to economize our energy.

The fight is now for survival, to do our best so when the opportunity arises, we are ready — we can act with efficiency and continue the search for victory.

Perhaps with a different perspective we could think of this moment as being a time to rest and reorganize ideas.

When we leave this moment, we can leave better, more rested and with a more effective fight plan.

Who knows what opponent we will encounter? It may be completely different from the one who started.

We can be different too.

We are Jiu Jitsu —  whole — made up of students, athletes, academies, organizations, suppliers, fans, media — in short, a living breathing organism.

We can’t do what we used to do, we were simply not prepared to fight an opponent so fast, explosive and scary.

To make matters worse we are in a fight without a time limit (or at least longer than we are used to) so we won’t be saved by the clock either.

Jiu Jitsu is on its knees.

Our opponent continues with the hooks in but doesn’t have the same pressure as before.

We managed to get rid of a hook, we’re still in danger but we start to feel confident. We have a chance to put our plan into practice.

We continue with calm determination, focusing on technique. Finally we get free.

A new struggle begins but we’re much more prepared now, with a clearly defined plan.

The next movements are ours and people can see that we’re different. Our movements are precise and more efficient — our disposition increases as we continue to fight.

Our opponent does not give up, but surely the worst is over. We are in control of the fight — our fans who were before a little apprehensive, now shout excitedly.

We feel indestructible. Full of confidence.

But the fight is not over yet and the submission doesn’t seem as close as we would like. We need to follow the plan and be as calm as ever to get out of trouble in order to achieve victory.

Sometimes anxiety and frustration can be very tricky, we need to stay alert and focused on what is in our control.

We know the fight will be long, but we will be victorious.

After all, putting Jiu Jitsu on its knees is not a very safe place for an opponent.



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