If you can learn one technique, you can learn them all.


The beautiful thing about BJJ is that everyone is different. There are different sized people with different types of attributes. There are small players who somehow have immense strength and then there are giants that have the speed of Rafa Mendes. We have all seen people like that and everything in between. While this is a beautiful aspect of BJJ it’s only fair that in typical BJJ fashion there is an equal and opposite reaction.

The opposite reaction is that people that fit into certain size categories are either inherently good at a technique or inherently bad at a technique. Which on face value seems accurate for the most part it’s not true. What’s true is that you get good at what you practice. Take my imaginary example friend Bob. Bob is 30 years old and around 209 pounds. Bob begins training for X amount of months and the time comes where Bob can now start tapping other students. Bob now has to start thinking about the tools he’s been shown and which he’s going to apply.  Bob so far has learned a Rear Naked Strangle, Americana from side control, A Triangle from the guard and a straight Armbar.

Bob then has to decide which one or two of these he will begin to show more attention to to make his main tools. While all of the submissions he has learned are ALL high percentage options Bob might feel that his body type doesn’t allow him to triangle so he neglects that for a while. He decides he’s going to use his strength and size and he’s going to go after the Americana from side control and the straight Arm Bar from knee ride. That’s all well and good. Bob continues his BJJ journey and turns into a killer that is notorious for his arm locks. That’s an amazing thing for Bob but what happens when Bob is forced to fight off of his back and instead of being a threat off of his back he merely is trying to get up and get back to a position on top to hit his famous Americana. Bob may well be able to do that and once again that’s a credit to Bob for his hard work in getting to the dominant position.

What this shows us is that we can become amazing at any technique, you just have to try it. Imagine if after Bob perfected his Americana from side control and his Armbar from knee ride he decided I’m going to become equally as good at the triangle. That’s all it takes and that’s the philosophy we should have for every technique we learn. Every sweep, submission, pass and escape should be practiced not until you can do it right but until you can’t do it wrong. With that mindset you will achieve a truly well rounded game. Treat every new technique like it’s your favorite and master it.

The best thing about BJJ is learning, that’s why we all do it. Why not broaden your horizons on what you can learn and achieve?  It can become all to easy to fall back to your go to’s in sparring and yes that’s a tool you have worked hard to sharpen but are you learning as much as you could be, you don’t know what you don’t know.  This video from Marcelo Garcia really opened my eyes and has helped me immensely already. Hopefully it can help you all as well.

Marcelo Garcia speaking about learning new techniques