Returning to Jiu-Jitsu

At the end of my last blog I explained that I’d returned to training Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. I’m currently training with the apolitical Fighting Fit team in Stafford led by BJJ Globetrotters Christian Graugart Purple Belt Chris Paines.

FF BJJ.jpg

Chris (standing, left, red venum shorts) is a good Coach and his passion for the sport comes across in his teaching and Fighting Fit is an inclusive and welcoming environment with some strong grapplers I enjoy rolling with. If you’re interested in studying submission grappling, No Gi or Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu in Stafford I’d definitely recommend coming down to a class. The whole month of January has been free which has meant I’ve been able to enjoy a handful of classes and open mats.

Coming back after a long break (8 years on and off) and more pounds gained than I would like I have found the experience very interesting:

I’d liken it to having broken a bone and requiring rehabilitation before you can learn to walk unaided again. Though after a handful of sessions I’m determined to learn to walk again and gain the ability to jog and run (to take the metaphor to its conclusion).

What I’ve found is that my flexibility and movement is off, as you’d expect for 8 years away, and I’ve forgotten some of the basic submissions like the setup to the triangle bar the most very basic push and pull setup. I haven’t forgotten my base, my breathing, or taking my time regardless of my training partner.

I am trying to re-learn to be technical even though I’m getting my memory jogged for some of the positions and submissions. 

Though there are some small mercies for having trained before. I’m glad I don’t have to go through the white belt aggression phase again, which is great, but I have certainly noticed there are things I would like to do that my body won’t let me do for a number of reasons even if I can remember how to do it like regaining my guard.

I know these will all return, as will my cardio, endurance and movement in due time but it is certainly humbling and frustrating to have to redevelop these attributes. 

Currently I’m focusing on NoGi because I can’t fit in my biggest Gi (A5) so I am doubly motivated to get back down to there. I do so badly want to train in the Gi again.

I’m looking forward to taking in some classes at the new Gracie Barra Birmingham location (or at least new to me, since I used to train at the Stevie B’s location in Acock’s Green) when I can fit into my Gi.


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