The time you spend on the mats will, one day, culminate with a black belt. Of course, your mind is set to continue training after you become a black belt… But, what do you think are the most important things you’ll learn when you become one?
Here are the 4 most important lessons that you’ll learn as a BJJ black belt.
TRUE PLEASURE COMES FROM TEACHING OTHERS
It sure does feel nice to wreck other people in competition (and training, let’s be honest). But do you know what feels even nicer? Transferring knowledge to others.
In your come-up years (for as long as they may last), your focus will probably be on winning in training. Then, as you become more mature, it will shift towards learning – even on the expense of getting tapped out by a lower belt. And then, your next stage will be when you find out that BJJ isn’t just about you; but that it’s about transferring what you know to other people.
Jiu-Jitsu is about teaching others. Whether it’s in the form of coaching or plainly explaining things to others, the main thing is that as a black belt – it’s not just about you anymore.
TAPPING SAVES THE DAY
Everyone knows that they should tap, at least in principle. But when you become a BJJ black belt, you realize this at a much deeper level.
It’s because your experience has shown you that if you don’t tap, you won’t just get injured – but you’ll be sidelined for weeks or months. Or maybe even more.
Therefore, as a black belt, you learn that longevity is more vital than anything else in Jiu-Jitsu. All other hurdles can be overcome, if you keep training… And to keep training, you need to stay healthy. You need to tap when you’re caught.
YOU REALLY DON’T KNOW ALL THAT MUCH
Do you sometime think back to your childhood… To how you’ve thought that you’ll have it all figured out when you grow up? How it seemed that the grown-ups had all the right answers?
Pair that with what used to be your white belt mentality. You’ve thought that, by the time you reached your black belt, you’ll know it all.
Well, as it turns out, adults don’t know it all. They just know a bit more than children, so they’re better able to navigate the new unfamiliar things in front of them. You could say that they are just as confused as their kids are, but about other (more complex) things.
Same thing in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Once you’re a black belt, you’ll realize that you don’t „know it all“ and that the fields for discovery are huge.
That there are a lot of questions to be asked and a lot of important answers to be understood. And that you’ll spend the rest of your Jiu-Jitsu life trying to decipher them.
HOW IMPORTANT IT WAS FOR YOUR SELF-CONFIDENCE
You can’t really understand a thing while you’re doing it. It takes some distance, time, and objectivity to take a look at the thing at hand and truly understand what it’s doing… And how it’s shaped you in the process.
Once you reach your black belt milestone, you’ll come to realize just how much Jiu-Jitsu has helped your self-confidence and shaped you as a person.
You will look back on your life and experiences up until that point and get an in-depth understanding of how you became a stronger, more focused, and happier individual in the process. And that will, once again, bring you back to the first part of this article – teaching BJJ to others.