Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Feeling Jiu-Jitsu


Here's an excerpt from an article featuring Saulo Ribeiro, six-time world jiu-jitsu champion. Take a minute to think about how this relates to your own training. It's sound advice...
"If you think, you are late. If you are late, you use strength. If you use strength, you tire. And if you tire, you die." 
This is one of my favorite quotes, and it means that all jiu-jitsu must be based on how you feel your opponent. The timing to make a decision is not based on what you think you should be doing. It is about your body recognizing the move and automatically doing it. It's about muscle memory. For example, when someone is passing your guard, you feel he is passing so you cannot wait to decide what to do. There is no time for thought -- only reaction. 
This is one thing I developed a long time ago from my teachers -- my jiu-jitsu would be based on reaction. When you react, you don't give your mind the time to get filled with emotions. You are devoid of anger, fear, and frustration; you are simply moving. If your opponent is pushing your elbow and you're tired and almost hurt, it doesn't matter because you are reacting already; you haven't given yourself time to get upset. That's why I follow this motto: no mind. If you do not think, you must feel your opponent and react accordingly. 

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