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1 Year into My Jiu Jitsu Journey: (Reflections, Struggles, and Lessons.)

Updated: Jun 13, 2023


As a 42-year-old new practitioner of Jiu Jitsu, my journey into this martial art has been nothing short of transformative. Stepping onto the mats for the first time, I was filled with excitement and curiosity. Now, after a year of dedicated practice, I find myself reflecting on the struggles I faced, the lessons I’ve learned, and the incredible growth I’ve experienced along the way.

Embracing the Learning Curve:

Embarking on my Jiu Jitsu journey as a middle-aged practitioner presented its unique challenges. The learning curve felt steep, and I often questioned my abilities. However, with perseverance, I gradually embraced the process. Understanding that progress comes with time and consistent effort, I learned to be patient and appreciate small victories, no matter how seemingly insignificant.

Physical and Mental Resilience:

Jiu Jitsu demands physical and mental resilience. The physicality of the art pushed me beyond my comfort zone, requiring me to develop strength, flexibility, and endurance. Through countless rolls and intense training sessions, my body grew stronger and more capable. Additionally, the mental aspect of Jiu-Jitsu taught me to remain calm under pressure, strategize, and adapt to ever-changing situations—an invaluable skill both on and off the mats. Here is a great link to Bjj World discussing 6 ways to relax when you do Jiu Jitsu.

Overcoming Frustrations:

Struggles are an integral part of any martial arts journey, and Jiu-Jitsu is no exception. There were moments of frustration and self-doubt when techniques seemed elusive or when I failed to execute them effectively. Yet, these struggles became opportunities for growth. With the guidance of my instructors and the support of my training partners, I learned to persevere, embrace failure as a stepping stone to success, and approach each challenge with renewed determination.

Building a Supportive Community:

One of the most remarkable aspects of Jiu-Jitsu is the sense of community that permeates through every class. I found myself surrounded by individuals from all walks of life, united by a shared passion for the art. The camaraderie and support offered by my fellow practitioners have been instrumental in my progress. From their guidance during drills to the encouragement and friendship forged on and off the mats, this community has become an essential part of my Jiu-Jitsu journey.

Life Lessons Beyond the Mats:

Jiu-Jitsu extends beyond physical technique; it instills valuable life lessons. Discipline, humility, respect, and perseverance are virtues deeply embedded in the art. These principles have transcended into my daily life, positively influencing my relationships, work ethic, and overall mindset. Jiu-Jitsu has taught me to face challenges head-on, to remain humble in victory, and to embrace setbacks as opportunities for growth—a mindset that resonates far beyond the confines of the academy.


My first year as a Jiu-Jitsu practitioner has been an incredible adventure filled with both triumphs and tribulations. It has taught me the importance of perseverance, patience, and the power of community. Jiu-Jitsu continues to shape me, physically and mentally, propelling me toward continuous growth and self-improvement. As I step into the second year of my journey, I do so with a newfound appreciation for the art and an unwavering commitment to furthering my skills. The challenges may persist, but with every challenge conquered, I know that I am becoming a stronger, more resilient version of myself, both on and off the mats.



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