November 6, 2014 Alex Embry

Continuing Education in the BJJ and the Martial Arts

One of the unique things about BJJ is that it is such a vast organism.  It has application from self defense to sport all based off a single, large art form.  One can see it tournament competition, MMA, and law enforcement/ military application.  It’s big, and depending on one’s focus, you might not see all of it.

If your focus is IBJJF gold, how often do you defend punches in the guard?  If you’re doing MMA, how often do you train in gi?  If you’re out of a positional lineage, how often are you practicing inverted guard?  See how easy it can be to focus on a single aspect of the art?

Making sure that you’re looking outside those handful of things you are good at it key to exploring the larger world of jiu jitsu and developing a complete game.  Beyond that, it’s easy as BJJ practitioners to get locked in to looking solely at our art and ignoring the fact that the martial arts as a whole are even wider, and more vast, than just our corner of it.

Continually educating oneself about some of these is not just a fun intellectual exercise, but part of your growth as a fighter and martial artist.  Understanding how BJJ stacks it’s strengths and weaknesses against those same factors in other arts helps you make informed decisions on tool and tactic selection.  To use my friend and PTK coaches word, it validates what we do.

One of my out lets for doing this is chatting with other martial artist of all stripes on line at Karate Forums:


It’s a multidisciplinary site with lots of activity by well informed individuals.  It’s a pleasure to discuss martial arts with these people.  This year, I was honored to be nominated for a couple of the annual awards:

One of the categories that I was honored in was contribution to the Jiu Jitsu and Grappling Arts.  This is a real validation (thanks Paul) for our training methods, understanding of the art, and motivations at Alpha BJJ!  It is recognition by our well informed peers for our thoughtfulness and comprehension of this wonderful art that is jiu jitsu.

Thanks to the guys and gals at KF who nominated me, and thanks to everyone with the Alpha crew who lets me deepen my understanding of this art everyday so I can do my part to share it for others continuing education.

Thanks everyone!