Grip Philosophy In BJJ

If you believe that grip is limited to your hands, you are missing the broader vision of The Art.

Are you not gripping, when your ankles are closed in the guard?  When you are squeezing your knees together in the mount?  When your arms are seat belted when controlling the back?

Sure, these are positions, but your are still holding onto something.  If you expand your notion of grip to every opportunity where you hold and manipulate your opponent,  you will find that your abilities will expand.

If you still do not believe, then take your hands away.  If you consciously stop using them, you must automatically transfer your grip to something else.  You will have no choice.  But, when you are finished training with no hands, you will have a deeper appreciation for what grip is.  You will also have a deeper appreciation for what your body can do.

Do not limit your grip to your hands.  Allow your entire body to grip in the way that it was meant to.

The Holy Trinity of BJJ

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is all about efficiency.   To be able to last in a match, your skills must be more accurate and effective then your opponents.  Efficient technique arrives with diligent practice, something you will hear over and over from me.  Efficiency must come at the sacrifice of time and effort.   I believe efficiency in all Brazilian Jiu Jitsu performance originates from these three basic concepts, which I have labeled, the Holy Trinity of BJJ:

  • Breath performance
  • Hip performance
  • Grip performance

The concepts of Breath, Hips, and Grip are the key foundation of our ability to perform  The Art.  There are many more concepts, but these three are the pillars.  The trinity is analogous to an onion:  Each has layers upon layers.  As the layers are  pealed away, the true core is revealed.   This has been a goal of mine, to experience then remove each layer, to find the true dynamic of The Art.  My hope is for you to be able to do the same in order to realize your own efficiency.

I have began the discussion on breath, here and here.   There will be plenty more discussion.  But today, use the Trinity to diagnose any problems that you may be encountering as you learn and train.  Trace any issue that you have and it likely comes back to Breath, Hips, or Grip.