John Danaher’s Advice For Learning Details In BJJ: “The Human Mind Has Its Limits…”

John Danaher’s Advice For Learning Details In BJJ: “The Human Mind Has Its Limits…”

Ah, details… There’s so many of them in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu – and the more of them you know, the better you get!

However, it’s quite easy to get overwhelmed by the sheer amount of details.
Plus, it can get frustrating when you try to learn and apply them all in training and competition.

So how are you supposed to reconcile this desire to learn as many details as possible with not burning out?
Famed coach John Danaher understands the cognitive dissonance:

This a game where one small adjustment to what you’re doing with a given move can mean the difference between success or failure, between winning and losing.

It’s natural, then, to obsess over details and try to learn as many as possible in the quest to improve your performance.

However, Danaher also emphasizes that there are certain limitations so as to how much you can learn:

The human mind has its limits and you won’t be able to remember much under the heat and stress of a competitive match.

As such, you must learn to balance the need for detailed knowledge and the reality of our cognitive limitations.

So, you shouldn’t try to learn it “all at once”:

Rather, pick out two or three key details that have the most positive impact on your performance and focus on those – you can always add additional details later after you’ve thoroughly imprinted the first set of details.

Working in this manner is the best way to make quick and positive progress.


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