Estonian BJJ black belt Priit Mihkelson, has made a name for himself as a popular instructor at the BJJ globetrotter camps and from his very successful instructionals on BJJ Fanatics: Grilled Chicken Guard retention & Turtle series.
In this interview excerpt, Sonny Browne discusses with Priit his unconventional ideas around changing how BJJ is taught by implementing a sport-based approach similar to boxing and wrestling instead of a the traditional way BJJ is taught.
Priit is not the only person to share this view:
Ben Askren also criticised the training methods of BJJ schools and what he sees as a lack of drilling and soft and lazy training methods.
“We know, without a shadow of a doubt (that) just saying ‘go for five minutes’ is not the most effective way to train someone,” Askren said.
“If I’m coaching at my academy, and we were drilling the front headlock, we don’t just say ‘OK, now go five-minute goes’ because how many tries are they gonna get at going at the front headlock position?” Askren said. “Maybe one, maybe two, but essentially most people, if you say ‘go for five minutes’, they’re not disciplined enough to make themselves do new skills. They revert to whatever they do best. And then they just do it over and over and over again.”
“If I want a kid to be good at a front headlock – which if you’re gonna wrestle at a high level, you need a good front headlock – I’m gonna put him in there 50 times in that practice,” he added. “He’s gonna get it over and over and over, and maybe the next day, it’s single-legs, and maybe the next day it’s double-legs. And maybe some days, you say ‘hey, go for ten minutes, go wrestle.’”
“But saying ‘go for five minutes’ every single day is very much not the most effective way to do it, and it’s so insanely frustrating for me to have that happen at almost every jiu-jitsu school in the planet.”
Hear what Priit has to say on the subject:
Improve Your Guard Retention So It Is Hardly Ever Passed: Even If You Are Older & Lack Flexibility.
41 Year Old Estonian Priit Mihkelson (It Is A Little Country Near Russia) Figures Out A System For Older Grapplers To Retain Guard Easily.
If you lack flexibility, athleticism, youth, and explosiveness this is the system for you.