Curious whether BJJ builds mental toughness? Well, look no further: the answer is almost certainly yes! BJJ is certainly exhausting, but it pays off immensely through the valuable lessons it teaches you.
Whether it's for something as mundane as studying for school or something as grand as starting up a business venture, you'll find that the things you learn in BJJ will be invaluable in helping you achieve long-term success.
Here, we'll be looking into why BJJ is effective at giving you mental toughness, as well as what you can hope to gain from it.
BJJ is Hard
Let's get one thing cleared up right off the bat: BJJ is hard. It is both a very heavily physically and mentally taxing martial art, requiring consistent physical conditioning, firm psychological fortitude, and diligent technical study.
Those who want to succeed in this sport must possess patience and commitment in spades, which will be necessary for understanding its various maneuvers and finding the willpower to continue in spite of overwhelming hardships.
All of this can be intimidating at first, especially when you're first getting started. I promise you, however, that the rewards will be well worth it.
Overtime, you'll notice how your technique improves. You'll gain confidence as you realize that each success is helping you become both a better practitioner and a better person.
Key to BJJ being so difficult to learn is its complexity and need for adaptability. Unlike most other combat sports, BJJ has a huge number of techniques--600, in fact, each with various considerations and affected by various factors.
And we haven't even yet looked into how every opponent has their own unique style and strategy. If you want to stand a chance on the mats, you'll not only need to know how to execute techniques properly, but also how to adapt to your enemies' own techniques and fighting style.
In order to adapt properly, you'll need to develop awareness for reading your opponents' movements and learn how to react accordingly, which is a skill that will years to master.
And naturally, your opponents will adapt to you as well. They'll develop their own counters to your counters, which will necessitate you to find counters to their counters. Eventually, against especially skilled opponents, you may find yourself in an arms race over who can counter who!
So not only do you need to be able to recognize patterns in fighting styles, but you also need to know how to switch up your strategy from one moment to the next. This way, you'll always keep your opponent on their toes!
BJJ Teaches You How to Deal with Failure
This difficulty means, unfortunately, that you will fail. In fact, you will fail a lot, over and over, making dozens of mistakes and falling countless times.
It's easy to get discouraged when you lose or make a mistake. We often devote ourselves fully during training and put in so much of ourselves into it, so we can end up disillusioned if we start stocking up on losses.
But BJJ encourages you to focus on what went wrong and on how you can improve. This way, instead of allowing your negative emotions to overwhelm you, you will gain valuable insights into your weaknesses, which will be crucial for when you eventually remedy them.
And if you ever feel like you're out of luck, just remember, nobody ever succeeds without failing first. Even experienced practitioners regularly fail in BJJ. It's all part of the process!
Instead of being disheartened by these failures, use them as a way to identify areas for improvement and develop strategies for overcoming future obstacles. With time and practice, dealing with failure will become second nature--not just in BJJ, but in other areas of life too!
BJJ Helps You Develop a Mindset Based on Growth
BJJ instructors are among the best practitioners in their field, and they will often provide you with enthusiastic encouragement and feedback. They'll prioritize effort over talent and practice over raw skill, helping their students understand that they have control over their own success.
Along with techniques and drills, instructors provide you with tons of useful tips on how to better focus during practice and cultivate a more positive attitude towards training.
Their efforts eventually allow the fostering of an environment where diligence and discipline are valued above all else. As such, practitioners develop a mindset that allows for healthy personal growth.
These benefits don't stop in class either. Someone who develops this kind of mindset is much more likely to apply rigor and dedication into their other pursuits as well.
Ultimately, by providing students with tangible evidence that they are fully capable of succeeding--even if it's only a little at a time--helps develop a powerful growth mindset which, in turn, lends to mental toughness.
You'll Be Pushed Out Of Your Comfort Zone
Pushing yourself beyond your comfort zone is a fundamental part of the Brazilian jiu-jitsu experience. Given the grueling nature of every session, this is something you'll pick up fairly quickly.
Every training session and competition brings with it an opportunity to work on new techniques and to learn from experienced practitioners, and each experience will likely be uncomfortable at first. The point, however, is that you do improve!
The more and more you roll in BJJ (which is what we call sparring), especially if it's against bigger or more experienced opponents, the more your body develops muscle memory, a valuable skill that can only be taught to you through experience.
Progressing through the grades also pushes your boundaries by exposing you to different opponents that gain more and more complex fighting styles. As such, you'll be forced to apply what you've been taught into tougher and tougher scenarios.
On top of this challenge, a practitioner will often face opponents whose game plan revolves around exploiting certain weaknesses or using attributes that are difficult for any opponent to counter.
This requires a dedication not only to learning technical aspects but also developing mental fortitude as well as tactical awareness if they wish to succeed when faced with someone who presents these types of problems.
Training in BJJ is an excellent way to improve your overall physical fitness, especially if it's done on a consistent basis. But an oft-overlooked benefit is how it can give you things that go beyond physical strength, like discipline, focus, and mental fortitude.
As a jujitsuka, you'll be taught to focus your mind into the task laid out before you. You'll know how to remain calm even in stressful situations, and you'll carry this sense of duty and self-duty with you, wherever you go and whatever it is that you do.
Building mental fortitude isn't all BJJ does for you--it can help you get in shape too! If you'd like to read more on that, click here!