Lesson From Roger Gracie: Set Your BJJ Priorities Carefully

Lesson From Roger Gracie: Set Your BJJ Priorities Carefully
Image Credits: Brian Glick Instagram

Roger Gracie is one of the greatest Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu athletes of all time… And there are many lessons an “everyday” BJJ student could learn from him – not just technique lessons either, but also a lesson or two on how to approach BJJ training itself.

Brian Glick has had an opportunity to train with Roger for many years. And the most important lesson he learned from the Gracie was – being careful about setting your priorities in BJJ:

For many years I had the deep honor of training with Roger Gracie during his visits to RGA in New York. Among the many important lessons I learned during this time, one stood out more than others: the importance of SETTING PRIORITIES CAREFULLY.

Impressive in so many ways, he has an uncanny ability to identify the most important element at any given time and then to direct his attention there.

Brian explains that Roger has, even back then, had an ability to direct his energy in a very productive way:

Whenever we trained together it felt like very little of his energy was wasted while my own efforts seemed to be somehow both misdirected and useless.
His advice to me was simple: to manage difficult circumstances, start by understanding what you’re trying to do.

This will be your MAIN PRIORITY. It might be determined by the atmosphere, your partner, even your internal state. Once you know that, you can reduce the time (and attention) you spend on things that don’t matter.
It’s been my goal to continue to streamline in this way, aiming to take away what I DON’T NEED so I can focus on what I DO NEED.

It’s proved to be an essential lesson both on and off the mat – and one I’m very grateful for.


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