7 Things To Look Out For In A BJJ Instructor


What makes a good Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu instructor? Is it someone who is a world champion or someone with many years of experience? While talent and knowledge are key for every instructor, it is just as important for him or her to be passionate about passing on that knowledge to students.


You probably entered your first academy because they offered what you were looking for as opposed to because you heard that so-and-so was a legit black belt of the world class caliber. Once you have trained for a while and you begin to learn more about the sport the question may come up, “Do I have a good instructor?”


Today we are going to investigate some characteristics and qualities that define a great BJJ coach.


1) They are credible and have extensive knowledge


How experienced is your instructor, really? The problem with some so-called experts is that they aren’t actually as good as they make themselves sound. This is why it’s so important to always do a background check – beyond their own websites and social media accounts. Has your instructor been training for a long enough time to have the required knowledge to pass on to students? Or perhaps the relevant ring experience at the highest levels, in order to advise competitors accordingly. You need to double check their background and credentials in order to suss out how credible they truly are.



2) They inspire you


Does your instructor make you want to come to class everyday? Do you feel like you are only showing up only because you locked yourself into a contract? A great instructor is one who has the ability to inspire you to want to learn, grow and develop your Jiu-Jitsu skills. A great coach is someone that you look up to and want to be like. A lousy instructor is one who makes you loathe going to class. Usually the are impolite, rude, long-winded and do not know as much as they let on to.



3) They give you constructive feedback



In order to properly track your progress, and ultimately improve, it is crucial to get feedback from your instructor from time to time. Are you just a face in the crowd, or does your instructor take the time to come over and help you along personally. Do they genuinely care enough to give you that individual time. Are you left alone to figure out what is up and what is down? A great instructor observes your performance and gives you constant helpful tweaks to make you progress as successfully as possible.


4) They are patient


Not everyone has the patience to break down complex techniques and explain it over and over again to someone who might be slower at learning. However, good martial arts instructors understand that everyone learns at their own pace and that there’s no point rushing to the destination because the journey matters so much more. Hence, they wouldn’t mind if someone takes a little longer to understand what’s going on – and they never compare students to each other because, at the end of the day, personal growth is what truly counts.



5) They are flexible in their approach


Your instructor may have a particular area or position of expertise, but are they able to teach and help you with techniques that suit your body type? A good instructor is not rigid and set in their ways. They are open to new thoughts and new ideas. They exemplify ego under control.



6) They put your safety first


Good instructors prioritize safety – especially when beginners might be unsure about the execution of certain techniques. Hence, they make sure to pay very close attention to their students, so they understand what’s going on, as well as make sure that they only move on to the next level when they’re ready.


7) They are honest


If you aren’t training enough to prepare for your upcoming competition, a good instructor isn’t going to lie to you and say you’re going to win, as much as he or she would like to encourage you. Instead, he or she will call you out on it and always be honest with you. With that said, good instructors also don’t praise a mediocre effort, so you’ll know when you’re on the right track. After all, your progress matters to your instructor as well, and he or she will do whatever it takes to build you up – if you’re willing to do your part and give 100%.


So tell us, do you think you know how to spot a good BJJ instructor now?




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