Thursday, February 23, 2012

Are you Teaching or Training in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu?

I have trained a countless number of people in my job over the years in many different areas, but I have never taught anyone. I never knew there was a difference between the two until last Saturday when I taught the kids BJJ class.

So what are the fundamental differences between training and teaching?

Definitions of Teaching:
• To impart skill or knowledge
• To Instruct
• To Guide the Studies of ……

Definitions of Training:
• To make proficient by instruction and practice
• To give the discipline and instruction, drill, practice, etc., designed to impart proficiency or efficiency.
• To get oneself into condition for an athletic performance through exercise, diet, practice, etc.

During class on Saturday, I demonstrated a technique and explained the theory behind the technique and then the class will drill the move to commit it to muscle memory. I gave instruction to each of the students if they were not doing the movement correctly. Sounds like a normal class?

In my mind, the wheels were turning, and I was able to see the technique differently. By teaching it, I was able to slow the technique down and see the errors I was making when I was drilling it. I was not putting my foot in the right location to trap my opponent’s foot tighter. And I had my grip wrong when breaking down his elbow for the trap and roll. I probably drilled the trap and roll mount escape well over two hundred, who knows the actual repetitions, but it has been a lot.

This is when I realized there is a difference between teaching and training Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. I was able to drill and break the technique down at the same time; it was the best of both worlds to me.

I started thinking about the drilling of moves, instead of seeing how fast I can get a repetition to finish. I need to start invoking the “Quality over Quantity” rule. I need to teach myself the move first and then drill it. Before I would just go into drilling the move and rarely would I slow down to think of the steps. It is amazing to me that I have been able to retain as much as I have. There should be an equal balance between the two in the end.

I know there are several instructors, students and even actual teachers that read my ramblings. What is everyone’s thought on developing an instructional mindset while drilling or training?

1 comment:

  1. I think I've always had that mindset, because I've always written up my training. That meant that I needed to understand exactly how the technique breaks down, so I could write it up, step by step.

    The main difference now that I'm teaching is how to present the information concisely, as well as how to organise the lesson (how much sparring, what kind of grips to emphasise, what drills to include etc).