Source: Sean Maghami for BJJ legends
More women than ever are getting involved in Jiu-Jitsu and they are the role models for bringing more women into the sport. They train gi and no gi, they compete, and they roll with men and women. So what advice can I offer my Jiu-Jitsu sisters?
Tip #1 – Learn to analyze Jiu-Jitsu
The skill of being to analyze movements, applying or resisting a technique, will serve as the foundation for everything below. Just as we exercise physically to develop muscles we must also strengthen our ability to articulate WHY techniques are and are not working. How often have we come across a technique that didn’t work well in sparring and abandoned it? Being able to troubleshoot issues makes it much more likely that we critically think what we are doing with our bodies. The goal is to raise your awareness over every part of your body so that you can sense everything that is going right or wrong with the techniques and resistance to them. Not to mention, this will also improve your communication to your partner or instructor to get more input.
Tip #2 – Understand the use of force
Being the smaller OR weaker (not all women are small, not all women are weak) person introduces the idea that we might need more strength to successfully apply a technique. Instead, look at problems in terms of physical force and mechanical force. Superior technique is about the proper use of body alignment and position to maximize your own force and movement while minimizing your opponent’s ability to generate force and move freely. With women in particular, this involves the use of your whole body behind the techniques. Find a partner, male or female, that you trust to apply more physical force on you so that you can learn to counter it with mechanical force. This is a great drill when preparing for competitions!