The jiu-jitsu journey is a never ending one, as no matter how much you practice it is impossible to master every area of the game. While there are life-long practitioners of the art, there are also many folks who take extended breaks or even give up on the art all together. Injuries, competition struggles, and watching friends leave the gym often make it difficult to keep going. The following are some steps you can take to stay motivated to train jiu-jitsu for the rest of your life.
Set Realistic Goals
Realistic goal setting will help you to stay on track throughout your jiu-jitsu journey. Things like showing up to class a certain number of times per week, successfully implementing a new technique in sparring, or even teaching your first kids’ class are all great goals that you can accomplish if you set your mind to them. These types of goals allow us to make measurable progress in jiu-jitsu and often encourage us to set new goals once these are accomplished. There are many opponents of setting realistic goals, stating that it’s better to set unrealistic goals and fall short than to set goals that are too easy to hit and not reach our potential. This is true. However, if you’re currently struggling to stay motivated, it’s better to start with goals that you’re likely to hit. Once you string some of the more attainable goals together, then you can start setting more audacious goals to help you truly reach your full potential.
Help Your Teammates Improve
Though it may seem counterintuitive, it’s often useful to focus on helping others when we’re struggling with our own personal issues. This could come in the form of helping a classmate with technique, cheering for a teammate at a tournament, or even just being a good training partner and providing the right amount of resistance during a class. Your training partners will often notice these things and be grateful for your help. This creates not only good personal relationships but also a great atmosphere within the entire academy. It’s much easier to maintain motivation when your training environment is positive and when everyone is trying to help each other get better.
Watch High Level Black Belts
Another great way to build and maintain motivation is to watch world class black belts. This can include technique videos, highlight reels, or full matches. Watching elite level black belts is motivating because you can see not only how skilled they are, but also their ability to perform under pressure against other skilled opponents. Often, it’s helpful to watch competitors who have a similar body type or a similar game to your own. You can see the way their opponents counter their moves and how they respond. This is great supplemental training tool as you’ll be able to see how a high-level opponent could potentially counter your game. Another great reason to watch high level black belts is because although they may have similarities, most of them have very different games. They are living proof that no matter what guard or what passing style you prefer, you can get it to work at the highest levels of competition.
Staying motivated in jiu-jitsu can be a difficult thing, especially since progress is often slow and steady. But if you set realistic goals, focus on helping your teammates, and watch high level black belt athletes, you’ll have a better chance of building or maintaining motivation and you’ll improve more over the long haul.
Thank you for checking out the blog! Send us your tips to staying motivated, we would love to hear them.
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