In Pursuit Of Progress


Sometimes it’s quite difficult to know how you’re progressing in BJJ. Okay, so we have stripes and belts, given at the instructors discretion, that allow us to know where they think we are. Sometimes, however, it’s difficult to keep track of how much your game has improved, or how working on different things has been paying off.

And then, the other day, something happened which meant I was able to see exactly how much I’d improved in the space of a year. A video popped up in my Facebook memories, showing me rolling with Cosima a year ago. I posted it to my Girl On A Mission Facebook page, so you can go check it out!

Anyway, as I was watching that it showed me just how many changes I’d made, and how much better I’d become. Quite frankly it was a bit cringey to watch that, but I guess we’ve all got to start somewhere, and I clearly wasn’t going to be amazing at it before I started training five times a week with Michael Wood at Kaizen.

In terms of the content of the video, it’s clear that I had very little idea about principals (something which provides the core basis for teaching at Kaizen Academy). I’m giving away underhooks for free, I’m being swept all over the place and my positional recognition is nowhere near what it is today. The being swept is fairly understandable, I had no idea that was a bad thing (!), and didn’t know anything about the rules or points system (IBJJF system). Now I’m fairly up on the rules, and enjoy figuring out the best ways to maximise those points.

What I didn’t know then is not really important. The point of this is to prove that even when it feels like you’ve not progressed, in reality you’ve made leaps and bounds. On a day to day basis it’s difficult to see where the improvements have been made, but this video from a year ago makes it as plain as day. If I had a roll with myself from a year ago, I would kick my ass up and down the mats. It would make for a rather strange experience though!!

The appearance of that video just gave a chance for a moment of reflection and “oh yeah” realisation, as to what my jiu-jitsu was like a year ago. I’ll be fascinated to see how much my game improves in the next year…

Until next time,




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