John Danaher: “Gym Culture Is The #2 Source Of Injury In BJJ”

John Danaher: “Gym Culture Is The #2 Source Of Injury In BJJ”

The gym culture of the place you train BJJ in isn’t just important because it has a big impact on your love for the martial art. Rather, it’s incredibly important for your training longevity as well.
What’s more, John Danaher believes that gym culture is the #2 source of Jiu-Jitsu injuries:

If the gym culture, in which you work, does not primarily emphasize control – there’s a movement pattern there, within that training environment, which creates a higher rate of injuries over time.

Why? Because control is the essence of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu:

Someone once asked me to give one word which best describes the sport of Jiu-Jitsu. And my answer was “control”. The more you control the movement and even the minds of the practitioners of Jiu-Jitsu, the lower the injury rate [will be].
When people tend to favor other elements of Jiu-Jitsu – the outcome of a match, the speed of play leading into submission… That’s when the injury rates tend to go up over time.

Therefore, Professor Danaher emphasizes that you should look to develop yourself in a culture that emphasizes control of both body and mind, above all else:

If you work with a culture that emphasizes control of both movement, the other person’s movement, and even the minds behind both controls… Self-control; control over your emotions, how much anger and competitiveness [you have], etc.
When control of both body and minds is the number one focus of your work, injury rates go down over time.

Gym culture is a big, big part of injury prevention. If you make control, rather than the outcome, the central focus of both your and your training partners… You’ll find that injury rates, particularly small scale injury and severe injuries, go down over time.