I often get asked if I personally watch Jiu-Jitsu videos. I must admit that I have watched my share of videos and produced a few of my own. Jiu-Jitsu is evolving at a rapid rate and to keep up students and instructors should watch videos and see what others are doing.
Videos should not be a substitute for a good quality BJJ instructor though. It should only be a helpful training tool. For some people’s learning style “Watching videos” doesn’t help much, they need hands on work. I want to counsel you to practice the move you see on the video, don’t just try it randomly in class, practice it with a partner and get it down no matter what learning style you are and your success rate will be greater.
As a student it is your responsibility to learn, not just come to class and have your instructor fill you full of knowledge. There is SO MUCH info that it is EXTREMELY DIFFICULT for an instructor to teach you everything. Go to class, learn techniques and moves and when you have some down time supplement your class time with Youtube or BJJ vids. Watch videos of people rolling. Watch videos of people sharing their BJJ philosophy. Don’t wait around for your instructor to give you all his knowledge. Jiu-Jitsu classes should be college level classes and not high school. There is much outside research to be done. Videos can help.
If an instructor doesn’t supplement his learning by watching videos or going to seminars (I'm assuming his personal instructor doesn't teach with him) then they will potentially be unable to keep up on the latest innovations in Jiu-Jitsu. People are coming up with awesome moves all the time (The berimbolo comes to mind) and it’s important that instructors stay on top of it, even just for conversational purposes only. The instructor won’t be able to intelligently converse with students about these new moves or the possible defenses to them.
I assure you right now if you are an instructor who doesn’t know or care about innovation or increasing your knowledge base… your students do. They are watching new techniques and instructors on videos and Youtube all the time, Whether you like it or not! You and they will find out quickly that BJJ is passing you by.
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