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Thread: The importance of drilling

  1. #21


    I would be interested to know what percentage come and go ... drop out ... say, before they get their blue belt. Roughly speaking, any ideas?
    Tap Forged

  2. #22


    Great thread! Interestingly enough, the first techniques that I truly "learnt" (that is drilled) hundreds if not thousands of times to get my blue belt nine+ years ago still make up at least 70% of my go to moves in hard training session and competitons!

    I guess I was very lucky that when I started BJJ nearly 11 years ago there were no black belts in the Country (Australia)... Maybe John Will but he was based in Melbourne and I live in Sydney. I was taught by 3 Mario Sperry/Carlson Gracie blue belts with more Mario Sperry blue belts coming out every couple of months on surfing holidays and to teach! We only had limited techniques so we drilled them like crazy! But suprisingly enough as more good guys(various grades) from multiple schools came out and our technique base expanded but our drilling slowed down, our rolling increased and although still solid our learning curve slowed down considerably!

    Moral to the story, when teaching I make beginners spend more time drilling than they do rolling although I do feel rolling is extremely important! I only wish I continued to drill the way I did when I first started... Even to this day I dont drill as much as I'd like to although I drill at least 30 mins 5 times a week! Perhaps that will be my first goal of the New Year, to up drilling to at least an hour a day 6 days a week! Oh and I'll let you know how it goes 1 years from now! :-) Again, great post!!!!

  3. #23


    I think I must be one of those rare breed of students who loves to drill. I do loads of beginner classes- and to be honest, I still learn details in techniques that I've done a zillion times. I don't want to learn flash stuff at all yet. Basics all the way please.

    I would love it if there was a basics drilling class. Say, drill a max of 5 techniques at least 50 times. I'd turn up at 2 in the morning for that class

    It probably doesn't hurt that two of my BJJ heros are Rickson and Roger Gracie- both known for solid, basic games.

  4. #24


    A drilling class is on the cards at our club (eventually), it really is such a positive thing to do for your game.

    If you don't drill enough then it's very hard for techniques to become natural movements.

    You can never drill too many arm bars and triangles.

  5. #25


    Quote Originally Posted by rjd View Post
    Professor how do you deal with the repetitive nature of driling the same set of techniques for a few lessons on the trot. We do this alot at my camp however the beginners have started to piss and moan about it and have even asked prof bruno why hes doing it and can he show new techniques.. a couple of guys have left and when asked have told me they are not paying for the same techniques over and over again... sad I know but its happening
    I'm very much a beginner and I have come across loads of guys who seem to have this attitude.

    Personally I would love to drill just one or two techniques over and over again for an entire hour, but you usually find that the person you're drilling with gets a glazed look after the tenth time you drilled and they start looking to the instructor for something new.

    People just get bored, it's human nature but it's something I find extremely annoying, because I'm there to learn and drilling for an hour is how I will learn best, I know this.

    Unfortunately for an academy to keep it's student numbers up so it can pay the bills, it must try to keep some sort of balance to the sessions and keep it stimulating. Personally I find that if I only get the chance to drill a technique half a dozen times, once or twice a month, I begin to feel decidedly unstimulated and very frustrated instead.

    I can't use a dummy and I can't do it in my head. I need a real life partner who can resist a little for it to sink in.

    I would love a session where the focus was on just drilling one or two techniques for at least an hour. Then people who attend would know what they were getting into and couldn't start crying about how dull they find it.

    Dickie, Simon, a drilling class would be awesome.

  6. #26


    Hmmm I dunno I think there are a couple of dangers in excessive drilling/uchikomi.

    There are throws I have uchikomid ten million times (it seems) and still cant do for shit. My absolute favorite throw, that works on most people I try it on I never uchikomid at all. A different instructor came to Judo class that day and did it on me a couple of times, I tried it on someone else, and it just clicked. And stayed in my head forever.

    In fact now I think about it all the throws that work best for me in live practice are the ones that look least convincing when I try to do them in uchikomi. I think part of the problem with most uchikomi is that the uki usually stands there like a slab, to make it useful they gotta try and move a bit like they would be moving in reality. Aliveness is key to avoiding boredom.
    When you get bored you stop learning, and stuff is actually less likely to settle in your long term memory.

  7. #27


    Tribulus- Yay The sooner, the better.

    Old Scratch & TFB- Fair comment. I can get bored sometimes, especially when it's not sunk in and I've just had enough of struggle. The thing is, that to reach a state of 'flow', you need to know how to move, with as little thought as possible, so that you can be in the moment. That is one of my long term goals. I've experienced it running and in honest/ real conversation, but not on the mat yet.

    Something else I've always had in mind is to move reflexively (similar to what I said above, but not same). Bruce Lee would fight entirely by reflex. My JKD instructor does too. Your unconcious mind is 100 times more powerful than your concious mind, your sub-concious mind a million times more powerful than that, and the deeper- real you, infinitely more than that. Aim high my friends

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