Training With Your Significant Other, A Blessing Or A Curse?

As most of you know Brent and I train together. We met on the mats so I am sure our story is different than some of you. We were both in love with Jiu Jitsu before we fell in love with each other. We started our journey as training partners, which led to friendship, and ultimately here we are. 

He has been my favorite training partner from beginning until now. He has over 10 years more experience than I do on the mats. He knows every single thing I am going to do, in fact he knows the next 5 steps i'm thinking. Rolling with him can sometimes make me feel like I am a no stripe white belt all over again, simply because if he wants he can stop any attack from a mile away. Now just because he can, doesn't mean he usually does. Usually we just play roll. I call it that because he lets me move and work but I pretty much always know who's boss on those mats ;) hahah. 

Now I think communication is key in all relationship aspects. If you aren't liking how your spouse is rolling or drilling with you, you have to speak up. They can't read your mind, and you shouldn't expect them to. Some days I want to play, some days I need him to push me to be better, to force me to work on the many holes in my game. I feel like I am pretty lucky because he can adapt his game to whatever I need, this is also a skill he uses in teaching. 

Now not everyone has these skills, In fact I am less than adequate at adapting my skill level to those around me. If your spouse is more like me you may need to have more patience, you may need to talk to them about what you need more often, and in more detail. Just communicate. 

Often times when this subject comes up I hear a few different reasons why rolling with your spouse can be a curse. Some people complain about injury. Some people don't mind accidentally getting injured or injuring people on the mats, but the fact that its their spouse changes it for them. Personally I don't see Brent any differently in that aspect, we both injure each other accidentally and we just move on. We never hold any grudges, its just a part of our lifestyle. Another thing I hear is that their spouse has an ego, which kills it for them. I think people generally come in with a ego, usually time will soften this. They complain their spouse comes at them hard because they refuse to lose, even if they are less skilled. I have never had that problem and have a hard time relating. If this is an issue, I would definitely talk to your spouse about how winning is not the ultimate goal while training with each other. Helping each other grow, learn, and sharing a passion should always be the goal. 

I truly think rolling with your spouse is an amazing thing. I get to roll with my best friend every day. We learn from each other, grow together. Watching his eyes light up when he's teaching something he is passionate about makes me fall in love with him all over again. Sharing a hobby and a passion helps us grow closer off the mats as well. Rolling with your spouse can truly be a blessing. 

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