My 12 All Time Best Jiu Jitsu Posts From

This year has been amazing, and it feels great to have over 80 posts now.  To celebrate achieving my goal of writing every week this year (52 posts!) I’m going to revisit my 12 all time best posts.  Each article on this list also includes loads of links to my other quality content.These are in the order you typically experience them in your Jiu Jitsu journey.


Let me know in the comments which were your favorites.  

Any that didn’t make the list?

Down the rabbit hole we go…

(Current as of 12-27-17)

Getting Started (Road To Your First Class)

For people just thinking about training Jiu Jitsu, my most recent series helps students go from finding reasons to train, to picking a gym to try, to how to evaluate a gym’s culture before joining.

1.) Needing some reasons to start training Jiu Jitsu?

Do your reasons to not start yet include…
  1. Your fitness level
  2. You aren’t an aggressive person
  3. You feel you already are an alpha dog
  4. Money concerns
  5. Busy schedule

Then read this one.

Reasons People Dont Train BJJ But Should Start Training BJJ
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Now that you know for sure that you want to start, you have to pick out a gym.

2.) How are you supposed to know where to train BJJ?

In this post I covered
  • Researching gym options
  • Step by step lineage research
  • Trying Out A Class
  • Signing Up
Researching Which BJJ Gym To Pick To Train At
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Once you’ve made the jump and picked out a gym comes the really important part.

3.) Make sure you are familiar with the completely made-up ritual of presenting the instructor with a pineapple.

This post is one of my most popular posts ever, and is a bit of escapism.  It is definitely not my most useful, but people like it.

Bring A Pineapple To The First BJJ Class You Take
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Once training has begun is when my posts really become effective.  I have a collection of posts helping the new grappler start their journey on the right foot.

Early training (the first year)

Some people are shy about rolling, but improving at Jiu Jitsu does not happen without rolling.  Coming to class and trying to memorize moves is a far cry from understanding their execution.  That’s what rolling gives you.

4.) After learning some moves it is time to roll for the first time.

Rolling For The First Time In Brazilian Jiu Jitsu
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Once you start rolling you are going to realize you aren’t near as good as you thought you’d be.  Prepare to deal with a ton of losing before winning starts to happen.

5.) What should you do when you are the worst grappler on the mat?

The Worst Grappler On The Mat - BJJ Self Help
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6.) Finding the motivation to train can be a drag sometimes.

When you are just coming in to get your butt kicked day in and day out it can be hard to get up the nerve to go train.  I feel proud of how candid and vulnerable this post turned out.

Having Trouble Finding The Motivation To Train Today?
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Up to now we have mostly been drifting along wherever our Jiu Jitsu journey happened to take us.  One of the keys to improvement is to start steering our vessel and taking control.

7.) Take ownership of your progress

This stage is so important to make it out of white belt.  The personal rubric of analysis you create will shape your daily goals and strategies.

You Are Your Own Coach
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“Wait?!?” You may say.  “You want me to be in charge?  I’m just a white belt.”

There were a lot of mistakes I made at white belt, and this is one no one needs to repeat.

8.) My biggest white belt mistake was not focusing on just one or two moves at a time.

So many white belts will try to get good at all Jiu Jitsu at once.  Picking just a few moves and sticking with them for a month or two at a time is the only way to progress to where a practitioner can use instincts instead of rote memory to try to execute moves.

My Biggest White Belt Mistake In Jiu Jitsu
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Now that you aren’t making a major mistake, it is time to start focusing on actively doing things right.

9.) What are the top ways to improve at Jiu Jitsu?

  1. Training Consistently
  2. Private Lessons
  3. Seminars (Special nod to the Nick Diaz BJJ Seminar I attended)
  4. Cross Training
  5. Competing
Getting Better At Jiu Jitsu
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All this working towards improvement is made even easier when you start to see what people ahead of you in this journey are doing.  See what people who are doing what you want to achieve are doing.

10.) What are black belts doing that you aren’t?

This entry has a special place because it was one of only a few video entries I did.  If I could film it over, I would have picked a location with less background noise, but I’m really happy with the content.

The BJJ Black Belt Difference
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There are black belts and then there are black belts.  Yuri Simoes has amazing credentials as a grappler.  When I got the opportunity to interview him I was thrilled.

11.) How does Yuri Simoes harness and develop intensity? (Video Interview!)

All this talking about improving can eventually start to feel like work.  How do we keep our training fresh and not get burnt out?

Yuri Simoes Interview - Intensity In Training
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12.) Jeff Glover is a great example of how to keep Jiu Jitsu Fun

I saved the best for last.  This is probably my favorite post I’ve ever written.  The number of people who contacted me and say this really helped them get over a rough patch in their Jiu Jitsu was so inspiring!

Jeff Glover Made Jiu Jitsu Fun
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Thank you for all of your support this year!


Let me know in the comments which were your favorites.  

Any that didn’t make the list?