• Remus Corbei

Maximize Your Jiu-Jitsu Learning Experience by Finding Your “WHY”

Updated: May 22, 2020


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s a Jiu-Jitsu instructor, one of the most frequent questions I get is “How can I learn Jiu-Jitsu faster?”. I look at it as a positive reaction to the excitement that we all get when we first start to fall in love with Jiu-Jitsu. We start to see the value of Jiu-Jitsu not only in its efficiency as a martial art, but also as an overall body workout and a lifestyle – so we want to take it all in, as quickly as possible.


Unfortunately, as I often notice, this excitement starts to fade as soon as we start to realize how complex Jiu-Jitsu can be. Don’t worry, you are not alone, it is normal that you may feel overwhelmed, frustrated or discouraged at times by this complexity.

Over time, I’ve identified two major methods of learning Jiu-Jitsu faster: train more frequently and train smarter. These two methods are not the only ones, nor should they be approached separately. Ideally, we look for a combination of both.

The first method, train more frequently, is a proven method and it’s working well. We can agree that 6 training sessions per week are better than 3 training sessions per week. If you have this time available and you’re willing to invest it in your Jiu-Jitsu training, you’re setting yourself up for an accelerated learning curve.

The second method, train smarter, means maximizing each training session you attend regardless of how frequently you can train.

In this series of articles, I’ll share with you the learning components that I believe will help you maximize your Jiu-Jitsu learning experience.The first learning component I’ll talk about and probably the most powerful one is to find your “Why”. Because it’s your "Why" that gets you up in the morning. It’s your "Why" that keeps you going when you struggle. It’s your "Why" that can unlock the best Jiu-Jitsu fighter within you.

Find Your “Why”

Probably you’ve heard of the saying “Remember why you started Jiu-Jitsu”. It’s empowering to know your “Why”. Knowing your “Why” you will help you prioritize your training time better, be more committed to your training and learning and focus better during training classes.


“The 5 Whys” is a method I’m using to help my students find their “Why”. Below you can find an example of a conversation that I had with one of my students to help him find his “Why”:

Student: Coach, I want to learn Jiu-Jitsu?

Me: Great, Jiu-Jitsu is an excellent choice, but WHY do you want to learn Jiu-Jitsu?

Student: I want to learn Jiu-Jitsu because it’s the Best Martial Art?

Me: Yes, indeed, Jiu-Jitsu is one of the best martial arts, but WHY do you want to learn Jiu-Jitsu?

Student: Ah, because Jiu-Jitsu is proven to be the most efficient Martial Art for Self Defense, I guess…

Me: So you want to learn Jiu-Jitsu for Self Defense, right?

Student: Yes.

Me: Ok, perfect, and WHY do you want to learn to defend yourself?

Student: Because I want to feel more confident.

Me: I understand, confidence goes a long way, but WHY would you like to feel more confident?

Student: Because soon I’m going to become a father and I would like to be able to protect my family.

As you can notice, at the beginning the student came up with some general reasons and after a few whys we got to more personal ones.

Most people underestimate the value and power of this step, but I can promise you that knowing your “Why” has the power to change everything, because:

· it’s your “Why” that pulled you towards Jiu-Jitsu

· it’s you “Why” that helps you find Jiu-Jitsu interesting to learn and train

· it’s you “Why” that helps you pay attention, think more clearly, understand more deeply, and remember more accurately what you learned in each Jiu-Jitsu class

· it’s your “Why’’ that will keep you moving forward when you’ll perceive Jiu-Jitsu too complex and you might think it would be so much easier to quit

· it’s your “Why” that will re-energize you when you’re struggling to stand up after you’ve been tapped thousands of times, hit a plateau or when you come back after an injury

· it’s your “Why” that will remind you that you’re very capable of reaching your Jiu-Jitsu goals, even though your fears and insecurities are telling you otherwise

The pursuit of “Why” is never-ending; it’s hard, it requires being honest with yourself, learning, and failure. Finding your “Why” will help you to keep loving Jiu-Jitsu, which will lead to a long and enjoyable journey. 

This is the power of “Why”, and that’s why I want you to find yours and to “Remember WHY you started”.


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