Jocko Willink: “Your BJJ Instructor Isn’t A God – They’ve Just Been Training Longer Than You”

Jocko Willink: “Your BJJ Instructor Isn’t A God – They’ve Just Been Training Longer Than You”

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu has seen a dramatic increase in popularity, drawing enthusiasts from various backgrounds. Along with this rise, there’s been a mystique built around BJJ instructors, often elevating them to near-celestial status in the eyes of their students. However, it’s essential to demystify this perception and understand that BJJ instructors, despite their higher skill level and knowledge, are not infallible beings; they’re individuals who have simply dedicated more time to the practice.

The Journey to Mastery

The primary difference between a BJJ instructor and a student is the amount of time invested in training and learning the art. Instructors have typically spent years, often decades, mastering techniques, understanding strategies, and refining their skills. This extensive experience is what sets them apart and allows them to guide others effectively.

You know how some BJJ instructors keep acting like they’re above their students… Almost as if you need to bow before them?
Jocko Willink is well-aware of those kinds of people. And he has some great advice:

Just to say this, for the thousandth time… Your Jiu-Jitsu instructor is not God or a God of any form.
They’ve just been training Jiu-Jitsu longer than you, you know? That’s just the way it is.

So, if they’re trying to treat you like you’re a surf on their giant land and you owe them… Like, that’s not a cool relationship out of the gate to have with an instructor. Your instructor should be cool.
And there’s all kinds of good instructors all over the place now.

I mean, Jiu-Jitsu is so widespread now. Compared to when we started, it’s ridiculous.

The same thing is true between training partners, too. Jocko doesn’t think too highly of himself just because he taps someone out:

When I beat someone in Jiu-Jitsu, I just think: “Well, I’ve just been training longer than them.”
And when someone beats me, I’m like: “Okay, cool, you’ve been training longer than me.”


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