Jocko Willink On Why Have Belts in Jiu Jitsu If They Aren’t To Be Pursued?

Jocko Willink On Why Have Belts in Jiu Jitsu If They Aren’t To Be Pursued?

Ex Navy SEAL commander Jocko Willink is very disciplined and he’s a Dean Lister black belt to boot. But he believes there’s more to bjj than meets the eye and it has to be about more than just ranking in a belt system.

Still even someone of Willink ‘s stature admits that prior to his bjj training he would’ve been submitted by someone much smaller in stature.

A recent question mailed in to Willink asks: Why have belts if they’re not something to strive for?

Here’s how Jocko explained it:

“He sent me this random thing… You know hey, I don’t know if I want to do this stuff about belts..

At some point jiu-jitsu become a lot more than just belts. Eventually the Jiu-jitsu itself completely bypasses what the belts are and what the belts mean. Now, you say to me well that’s because you’re a black belt. Of course they don’t matter to you, you’re already a black belt… The fact is that didn’t happen to me at black belt, that happened to me at like purple belt. I think about mid way of my purple belt time I had no care whatsoever of what belt color I was. Literally zero. And I just wanted to get better, I just wanted to know more, to keep training and I never even thought about it after that. “

Both Joe Rogan a JJ Machado/Eddie Bravo Black belt and Willink agree that bjj seems to resonate more with the cerebral individuals.

“That’s the other thing I’ve noticed in teaching kids jiu-jitsu” Willink continues, ” The kids that are a little bit more cerebral… You know the parents will think: my son he’s kind of a nerd, he’s kind of a smart kid I don’t know if he’s going to like it. But the opposite is actually true very often. Where the kid that’s cerebral, he’ll recognize as soon as you show him 3 things . Like you said – his wheels are turning he’s going wait a a second, this is a skill I can learn, and if I can learn to do this and the other guy doesn’t know this I will be able to beat him. And so cerebral kids often get into it even more than you know some kid that’s like a natural bruiser. ”

Rogan seems to agree: “You know 10th planet jiu-jitsu is just filled with nerds. They’re all nerds. Assasin nerds. It’s really kinda interesting. ”

Jocko continued: “And you’re not being facetious when you use the word nerd. Assasin nerds.”

Here’s how Jocko thinks he would’ve managed against a jiu-jiteiro prior to his training:

“Before I knew jiu-jitsu and I was a big Navy Seal 200 pounds – one of those kids that’s 140 pounds would’ve absolutely destroyed me if we’d gotten into a fight. Boom. Take my back. Put me to sleep. “


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