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16. Off the mat pursuits #1 Decision Trees January 26, 2008

Posted by Adam Adshead in BJJ, Chaos theory, Concept, Conceptual BJJ, Decision Trees, Off the mat pursuits.
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TreeWhether a coach, a BJJ athlete or both, Decision Trees are a good off the mat pursuit to use and also to share.

In there basic form they map out pathways, avenues and eventualities throughout a series of events. This is something which you can use in your everyday BJJ training to problem solve and shortcut decision making.

As I talked about in the article React rather than Recall I covered the idea of limiting hesitation with reactionary tactics and decision trees are almost a pre-cursor and commensurate off the mat pursuit which will bed in the ideas covered in the article. (So if you’ve not read the article check it out and if you have you might want to re-read it after this one for a different comprehension of the initial idea covered)

So, if we take a basic overview of BJJ and condense it quixotically into a decision tree we get something which looks like this: (more…)

14. React rather than recall January 11, 2008

Posted by Adam Adshead in BJJ, Chaos theory, Chess, Conceptual BJJ.
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phrenologyA lot of people think that Grandmaster chess players play/see 7-8 moves ahead at all times, when this really isn’t the case.

This common misconception of having a photographic memory that is as equally analytical as it is profound is probably quite accurate for some, but for most (including rookies like me) reacting to the situation in hand is the preferred choice.

It’s the same for BJJ, trying to recall all the moves and strategies you’ve ever learnt or have seen at will is increasingly harder to do the further you look ahead because of the chaos involved.

Whereas in Chess you get more time to think, during a roll in BJJ most of the time if you think then you’re usually too slow and have missed the boat of opportunity, that’s why I promote reaction over recalling. Not to say you can’t analyse your position or think about what you’re doing, but should favour certain moves to cut out the hesitation that trying to recall the golden ‘right move’ creates. (more…)

2. Introduction to BJJ and Conceptual Thinking October 8, 2007

Posted by Adam Adshead in BJJ, Chaos theory, Conceptual BJJ, Introduction/Welcome.
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Chaos Theory

BJJ or Brazilian jiu jitsu is a complicated thing.

Whether training for sport, competition or just for fun the sheer immensity of what encapsulates BJJ is scary.

  1. You start off by learning the different positions, ‘simple’ linear formulations of where your body is in relation to your training partner.
  2. You then figure out where each of these positions fits in relation to all the other positions….
  3. …Which you do by learning a catalogue of techniques which help you move, escape, maintain and even finish your training partner.
  4. Then comes the conceptual understanding of how the positions, techniques and most importantly chaos fits in with your game.

Then you’ve mastered BJJ and can retire happy in your self actulisation, well it’s not that simple.

Whether you’ve been training 10 weeks or 10 years you’ll have a different understanding of how things work. Now, that isn’t necessarily a timed served idea its meritocratic, there isn’t fundamentally a correlation between time served and conceptual understanding- you will just understand different things at different times.

Even the broad list of progression above is in no real order, some people may find things out after a few months that some may never figure out. Regardless you keep adding to your game throughout your training career and although it makes sense to say – learn a positional then a submission game, there are no set rules.

What Conceptual Thinking allows you to do is analyse and develop the glue that sticks everything together and it’s this glue which make the difference.

Whether you know 2 techniques or 200 you have to be able to perform them under chaotic situations. Different levels of experience, the size of the person, the positioning of your body to theirs, different reaction times, whether the planets are aligned etc all have a major impact on whether you can execute a certain technique or strategy.

What I hope to do in this Blog is document my conceptual understanding of BJJ and hopefully you’ll help me improve it along the way.

Adam Adshead