A Guest Article by Ritchie Yip
Brazilian Jiu Jitsu can be a confusing and frustrating martial art for the absolute beginner.
Today we’re going to oversimplify BJJ with 2 basic concepts; so that if you’re just starting out you’ll be able to understand this complex and confusing martial art a little bit more easily…
BJJ Beginner Concept #1: Top or Bottom
BJJ is defined by its many positions. The Roadmap for BJJ identifies 6 major positions, each of which can be applied from the top or bottom.
But if you’re a beginner having difficulty dealing with those 6 positions we can simplify things even further.
How about initially looking at Jiu Jitsu as only two positions. Top and bottom – that’s it!
And while there are techniques and positions that allow you to survive on the bottom you need to understand that, generally speaking, being on top is generally way better than being on bottom.
So, no matter what, when you’re doing Jiu Jitsu, try to get on top and stay on top.
BJJ Beginner Concept #2: Five Sticks
The second concept is that Jiu Jitsu is basically just stick fighting. Human beings are simply 5 sticks strapped together.
Our arms, legs and spine make up the five sticks.
These sticks can be used as two things.
Simply explained, a lever amplifies the force behind your motion and a frame stops motion.
When you’re doing Jiu Jitsu you always want to be a set of frames. Frames stop motion, thus if you’re a set of frames you’ll be able to stop your partner from moving in and smashing and smashing you.
Conversely, you always want your partner to be a set of levers.
You should always be looking for your partner’s’ arms, legs or neck so you can control them and submit them.
Don’t forget, levers amplify motion. So if you can grab onto your partner’s leg in the right way then their leg becomes a wrench that you can control the rest of their body with.
So that’s it. Jiu Jitsu in two simple concepts.
#1. Top is better.
#2. Jiu Jitsu is just stick fighting.
I hope this helps!
About the Author: Ritchie Yip teaches BJJ in Vancouver and Burnaby, BC. Check out his school at Infighting.ca