What's up guys! We have all been there or if you're brand new you will hit that dreaded plateau. No matter how long you train this is inevitable.
I wanted to give a couple tips on how to push past the feelings of being stagnant and level up your Jiu Jitsu game.
A lot of pushing past the plateau is exactly that, just push through it. Breakdown your matches and figure out what's not working anymore and where your weaknesses are. Is your partner stopping your sweeps? Figure out what they are doing to stop it and tweak what you're doing to complete that sweep. You can also figure out a kind of Plan B. Based on their defense to your first attack what can you do to counter the counter? Honestly, we should be doing this anyways but sometimes we get so hyper focused on Plan A that when it gets shut down we're not sure what else to do in the moment. Journaling is a great tool to keep track of techniques and what you're doing to your training partners, what's working, and what's not working. I'm not great about journaling but I have felt its benefits in the past.
A tried and true method that I have used since I hit my first plateau is to just "switch it up". So what I mean by "switch it up" is, once I feel like I am no longer progressing, I completely switch my game. I am so comfortable playing guard that that is my safe space. Once I feel that plateau hit I am no longer a guard player. I take myself out of my comfort zone and start working my top game. This is great because it starts to round out my game and I get to work on my weaknesses. Sometimes instead of playing a top game, I channel my inner Telles and sharpen up my defense. I love to play Turtle Guard when I hit a plateau. In the beginning I may get choked mercilessly but we don't grow inside our comfort zone. Maybe I'll play a lazy guard and if they pass, perfect. I then get safe and look for my escapes and make sure my defense is sharp enough not to get tapped. Guaranteed I will get tapped but the more I play that game the less and less it happens.
The last option I can think of is just take a break. I don't particularly like to suggest this because there is a chance that 1 week break will end up being a year. I have taken a month off before and mentally and physically felt so much better. I didn't regress at all in Jiu Jitsu and actually seemed to do better. When you're so obsessed with something sometimes it's best to recharge and take that break.
So there is a couple basic suggestions. You will find what works for you and I definitely suggest just doing what works for you. Jiu Jitsu is such a wonderful sport that we don't want to lose our love for it.
Hope to see y'all on the mats!
Cauliflower Ear Family
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