Training focus: Improving over winning

Improving over Winning

Today’s blog is on training focus and improving over winning. Many times in the beginning of our training, students focus on winning their “rolls” during class time instead of focusing on the bigger picture: improving. Winning or losing in training doesn’t mean a thing. In fact, sometimes in the beginning of our training, losing is much more beneficial to us getting better.

Royler Gracie on Losing

One of my instructors, 4x World BJJ Champion Royler Gracie, used to tell a story of his father, Grandmaster Helio Gracie taught about losing. His father would encourage him to compete by saying “If you win, I will give you 5 dollars. If you lose, I will give you 10 dollars.†At first Royler did not understand his father’s intentions, but later he comprehended that this was his way of taking the pressure off of him.  You learn twice as much from a loss as you do a win.

How to Improve

I always teach my students that we are only as good as our worst position. There will always be someone out there who is able to put us in that position. We will never find out where we are weak if we only practice our strengths. In order to continually improve, we need to focus on building up our weak spots. This means training with everyone. You will need to train with people less skilled than yourself. This will help you practice your offensive skills, submissions from the top and bottom, sweeps, and dominant positions. But you will also need to train with people who have better skills than you. This person will help to build upon your defense, escapes, speed of training, as well as testing your mettle. At the end of each training session, ask yourself “how did I improve today? What lesson do I take away from today’s training?”

As you grow into new belts, keep your focus on constantly improving over winning. When you reach brown and black belt, you will never remember the “roll” you had with your training partner on a Tuesday night in October. Winning that roll means nothing in your long journey through jiu-jitsu. Work on improving at all times, it will lead you to reaching all your goals through this great art.

Want to try a free jiu-jitsu class near Lyndhurst NJ? Call Savarese Jiu-Jitsu at 201 933-5134 to set up a free personal intro class!