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Developing Your Own Style of Jiu Jitsu

Now you might have just read the headline here and already be saying- “Style? I don’t even know what the hell I’m doing yet!” But everyone develops their own style of Jiu Jitsu after a while, and it’s based on a few factors.

Your body type.

There are things that will suit taller people and things that will suit shorter people. While I’d encourage everyone to learn everything, it’s okay to pick from the menu of techniques. And it’s definitely okay to look at something and say “Okay, that’s probably not for me”.

This counts double if you’re older, or if you have something that prevents you from doing it like an old injury.

That being said, in drilling, always try. You never know what will turn out to be the thing for you, and it’s great to test the parameters of the possible in Jiu jitsu. It could just be confidence holding you back from doing or learning something really cool.

Your personality.

This is more significant than you’d think. Aggressive, energetic people tend to have aggressive, energetic games. And laid back people tend to have laid back styles. Of course there are people who buck the trend. Right now I’m thinking of a kid I train who probably wouldn’t move if his leg was in the fire, but who is a dynamo when the round timer goes on.

But equally, don’t let your personality hold you back. You may need to be more aggressive in some positions, or, you may need to take a breath and calm down. You can surprise yourself.

Your fitness and mobility

If you’re immobile, you’ll probably prefer things that require little movement. It’s good to develop a style that suits that. Equally, we all know a bendy stretchy person who has a style that suits them.

But observing others games might give you some insight into things you might be missing, so make sure to look at what others are doing to see if you can learn a thing or two.

And in even better news, if you consider yourself heavy and immobile now, Jiu Jitsu will improve your mobility and your body type. You will find your style changes over time as you become fitter and more mobile.

So it’s good to develop your own style, but don’t let it limit you. Jiu Jitsu is an endless journey through styles and techniques. My advice- learn everything so you can pull from the full deck.

See you on the mat,


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