“Nothing about Jiu Jitsu is easy. Is it really for everyone?”
by Tony Peranio WBBJJ.com
I often times hear the slogan, “Jiu Jitsu for everyone.” Every time I hear it I am reminded of the statement’s ambiguity. I love Jiu Jitsu and I wish that everyone practiced it. I also love the fervor of those who have coined the slogan!
However, is this slogan a case manifest? Personally, I can enumerate upon quite a few people that Jiu Jitsu is not for. Hopefully by the end of this article I will have you convinced that Jiu Jitsu is only for a select few.
Nothing about Jiu Jitsu is easy. Jiu Jitsu is a martial art that requires many of the most esteemed human qualities. The Jiu Jitsu practitioner needs heart, will, determination, drive, courage, intelligence, balance, integrity, stamina, endurance, calmness under pressure, motivation and lack of ego. You must also be willing to be sore all day, every day. If you practice regularly, you will never have a day, where nothing hurts. The characteristics that I have stated are certainly not present in everyone. Some people possess some of the characteristics, but few possess all. These qualities come natural to some, and can be taught to others, but it is a far stretch to say that everyone possesses them inherently. It is also a “shot in the dark” to assume that everyone simultaneously possesses them all.
To make matters worse, the qualities that I have mentioned only scratch the surface of what it takes to be successful in the art! The ones that I have mentioned are the ones that immediately come to mind. Penning the entire list would be exhausting for me to write, and for you to read. The bottom line of it all is, is that Jiu Jitsu is not easy.
From my travels I have noticed that there are a tremendous amount of people who do not want to challenge themselves. Those of us who practice Jiu Jitsu love to be challenged! Every moment of our martial art is a challenge. I imagine that if you are reading this you either, 1) feel the same way, or 2) you are trying to find out if Jiu Jitsu is for you. If after reading to this point you are beginning to feel that Jiu Jitsu is not for you, fear not. The characteristics that I mentioned to be successful in Jiu Jitsu are present in every single human being. People develop and grow when placed under the care of excellent teachers and instructors. Stamina and endurance can be increased with exercise. Courage and heart increase every time you roll. Calmness under pressure comes with experience. Motivation begins to happen when you realize how fun Jiu Jitsu is to learn. Your ego quickly shrinks when people half of your size, submit you, with their bare hands.
Jiu Jitsu is for everyone in the sense that it can benefit everyone. However I have never come across someone who says, “Wow this Jiu Jitsu stuff is easy!” That has certainly not happened. To the contrary, I have seen many people come and go, because of the difficulties of our “game”. Life changes, jobs, injuries, family, school and finances are just a few of the things that I have seen pull people away from Jiu Jitsu.
“I have seen something else under the sun: The race is not to the swift or the battle to the strong, nor does food come to the wise or wealth to the brilliant or favor to the learned; but time and chance happen to them all.”
By another token, Jiu Jitsu makes you a lethal weapon. You are the carbine. You are the blade’s edge. It can be said that you are more lethal than both carbine and blade, because our Jiu Jitsu is always with us; it is us. Is power like this for everyone?? Guns are not for everyone. Knives are not for everyone. By the same token I do not believe that martial arts are for everyone. The slogan “Jiu Jitsu for everyone”, I believe, is being pragmatic in hopes for the future. Our combat sport is quickly growing in popularity. It is doubtful that this rate of growth will be slowed any time soon. I hear people talking about Jiu Jitsu in the strangest of places. I hear people talking about Jiu Jitsu in restaurants, family gatherings and many other unrelated social avenues. The quicker we can assist the growth of Jiu Jitsu, the quicker we can increase the most esteemed and noble qualities of mankind in others.
Jiu Jitsu is transformative, but it is not easy.
That is why I like it.
I hope you all enjoyed the read!
– Tony Peranio WBBJJ