The Top 3 Reasons You Should Try Jiu Jitsu

Jiu Jitsu is a martial art designed to give us the tools to defend ourselves against a larger aggressor. It is physically and cognitively demanding, and is more rewarding than any individual endeavor I have ever pursued. I believe that most people can benefit greatly from the sincere study of this art in myraid ways. […]

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On Why Adults Should Learn Self-Defense

Much of the western world is governed by a Christian ethic which encourages the proper treatment of our neighbor. Nearly all disputes are handled with words, but when we cannot reconcile our differences linguistically, our mammalian nature typically responds with violence. Thanks to the modern world, most of us have never known true violence. I […]

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Why Our Students Want to Clean Their Rooms

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Why We Should Train at a Slower Pace: Continued

In part 1 of this 2 part series, we discussed how performing the bulk of our training at an intensity of 50-75% appears optimal for skill development. We learn more because we are able to perceive more. We no longer rely on physical strength to compensate for technical weakness. We are no longer able to […]

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3 Reasons You Should Train at a Lower Intensity

I have been reevaluating the way I train in an effort to maximize health, wellness and skill acquisition. With my primary goal of training being to improve my technical ability, I believe that the majority of my rolls should take place in the 50-75% range of physical effort. Here are the top 3 reasons why: […]

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On the Need for Necessity

A 37 year old friend told me he’s in the best shape of his life because he has to be. At 31, though I have been a better athlete, I have never experienced better overall health. Like my friend, my age has forced me to be a better steward of my body. Professor Almeida once told me an […]

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On Points, Going Inverted, and Longevity in Training

The realization that I will be training Jiu Jitsu for the next 40-50 years has me reevaluating my practice. I tend to view Jiu Jitsu through the lens of the point system. Even though I haven’t competed in years, when I am training with a peer, I am very aware of the “score.” I now […]

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Begin With The End In Mind

This week’s blogs are grounded in lessons derived from reading that have applied directly to my practice of Jiu Jitsu. In our first post, Ann Lamott’s Bird by Bird gave us a mental framework with which to approach something as vast as Jiu Jitsu. Now we turn to Stephen R. Covey’s The 7 Habits of […]

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On Incremental Progress

In this week’s blogs, I went to the bookshelf to share some books which have influenced my Jiu Jitsu. The first is Anne Lamott’s Bird by Bird, an enjoyable read about the adventures, loves, and struggles of writing. Lamott chose the title for her book from an interaction she observed between her father and brother: […]

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Injuries and Jiu Jitsu: Understanding our Time Horizon

It seems to be a fundamental truth: if you are going to achieve a high level of technical competency in Jiu Jitsu, you will accrue injuries along the way. Though this is inevitable, we are not completely at the mercy of chance. From a pragmatic approach, there is much that we can do to minimize […]

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Play, Rather Than Work, Jiu Jitsu

One of my greatest obstacles to happiness is that I am so hyper-focused on becoming that I often neglect being. In a culture of growth and innovation, we are constantly tasked to use our time in the most productive way, and when we are not actively striving toward some grand aspiration, ennui sets in. Our […]

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“Savage”: Why We Need A New Vocabulary

If writing has taught me anything, it’s that words matter much more than we are consciously aware. Members of the Jiu Jitsu community have been using the term “savage” in a complimentary manner to describe one another, and I believe we do this at a great cost. We are aware of the connotation of the […]

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Why My Kids Will Train Jiu Jitsu

When I am a parent, my kids will train Jiu Jitsu because a maturing human being needs to purposefully meet resistance to optimally develop. Life in America, for most of us, is better than it’s been in any other time period or location in human history. Our culture has done a fantastic job of providing […]

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Jiu Jitsu, Humility, and The “Big 5” of Academic Psychology

Jiu Jitsu is the vehicle through which we achieve self-mastery. It’s complexity and difficulty create the perfect environment to mold our character. While I was writing On Jiu Jitsu, I found that much of my writing centered around the theme of humility. Since we were kids, humility has been praised as a divine virtue, but […]

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Jiu Jitsu, Death, and Self-Optimization

I spent a great portion of my twenties studying Buddhism and Stoicism, both of which heavily value the theme of death. “Memento Mori,” remember that you will die, inspires us to make optimal use of our finite time. “No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don’t want to die […]

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