Training since: December 2018
Any Martial arts experience before: Tae-Kwon-Do when I was very young
Why did I join Ruislip BJJ
I’d been a huge fan of the UFC for years and always wanted to join BJJ so I could learn some techniques without the brain damage from strikes to the head, but never actively sought out a club. After graduating uni, I messaged Raj about dropping down and I’ve been hooked ever since. We’ve now moved from South Ruislip to Rayners Lane and have a large mat area.
I had no idea what to expect at my first class, I was out of shape and had no idea what the class was going to be like.
We started with some usual warm-ups shrimps and break falls (No one looks good doing these on their first lesson so don’t worry). Then we started drilling; I can’t remember what we were drilling but I remember feeling very uncoordinated, but the other guys and Wiktor were very helpful and took the time to go through the movements with me and more importantly the ‘why’. I think this is a tell-tale sign of a great club and instructors, showing and explaining why certain positions give you a level of control and why certain movements are more mechanically effective in leading to a submission….
Then came sparring, which I really enjoyed but I 100% got my arse kicked by everyone there multiple times. This is the moment I knew I wanted to keep training, if I can stick at this for a bit longer, the less often I’ll be the nail and get the chance to be a hammer (except with you Radu, you f*cking gorilla).
People talk about ‘vibes’ a lot when they talk about BJJ clubs but it is actually very important. I’ve trained at a few different clubs and have honestly found Ruislip has the perfect blend of facilities, technical expertise and camaraderie. All members of Ruislip BJJ are very welcoming and want to help each other. There is a competitive edge in the lead up to competitions but this is to get the best out of everyone.
I’ve now trained for over a year and competed twice and recently got a Bronze medal at grappling industries. We film all of our fights and I’m already seeing huge progress in my game.
Advice for new joiners to Jiu Jitsu:
- Commit yourself for at least 2 months regular training, you’ll get through the basics and you’ll get in shape.
- Tap early and tap often. Ego is sure fire way to get injured and stay injured
- Listen to your body; if you’re injured badly, got a physio/doctor if not as bad come and train but train light.
- I’ve found stretching has made certain movements a lot easier and has been shown to help with injuries
- There’s a lot of information online, but take some with a pinch of salt, if you don’t see high-level guys pulling off that acrobatic instagram berimbolo sweep in competitions, it’s probably not going to work.
- Learn to control your opponent before worrying about how to submit them.
- The leg-lock wave has come, it’s better to know them and tap than to be clueless and get badly injured.