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Am I too old to start BJJ?

Are you dreaming of taking up BJJ, but worried that you’ve missed the boat? Becoming World Number 1 might be a stretch, but it’s never too late to get hooked on BJJ and get in shape. In fact one of the greatest allures of this sport is how the right skills can overcome gender, body size or age when grappling with an opponent. However, you might need a bit more than a can of coke to fuel yourself these days so here are our pointers for BJJ when you’re not 22 anymore.

DIET

‘You only get what you put in’ isn’t always about what happens in the gym. Preparing your body before you get on the mat is a huge part of ensuring you get the most out of your training sessions and diet is paramount. Getting on top of your nutrition will go a long way to getting you in top form, and on top of your opponent.

Also speak to your health practitioner about how to add anti-inflammatory components to your dietary intake to help recovery and injury prevention. Think fatty fish, olive oil and green leafy vegetables to start off.

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Training starts at breakfast.

PACE AND RECOVERY

First up, make sure that you take the time to warm up.

There’s no point pushing yourself for a moment longer in a grapple only to find yourself with a strain or injury that knocks you out for a month of training. Regular, reasonable training is the best way to  improve your BJJ and allow your body the time it needs to recover from a session.

I bet you’ve heard this one your whole life, but if you haven’t started listening to it yet it is time: recovery days are as important as training days.

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Don’t be afraid to be cautious on the mats

CROSS TRAINING

BJJ is a great way to have fun and get fit, but if you are serious about the sport you will have to supplement your mat sessions with other forms of full body exercise e.g. swimming, running or rowing. Not only will this give you more stamina on the mats, but a fit body is a less injury prone body.

AVOIDING INJURY

If you are being reasonable with pace, giving yourself recovery days and supplementing mat time with other forms of exercise you are already well on your way to avoiding injury. But it’s also important to know your limits.

Training with partners of all shapes and sizes is one of the best parts of BJJ, but when training with someone far more agile it’s important to proceed with caution. It’s a good idea to have a quick chat when training with a new partner to gauge how intensely you’d like to roll based on your weight, strength and agility match up. Furthermore, finding training partners of equal ability and strength to you is a great way to improve together over time.

TECHNIQUES

Some say the best defence is a good offence. But when it comes to beginning your BJJ training later in life, it’s a good idea to learn defensive moves and techniques first. This will give you a great foundation in BJJ and teach you how to stay calm and relaxed under pressure.

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Check your defence.

BJJ is an immensely popular sport that’s helped millions of people around the world get fit, make friends and enjoy a healthy and vibrant lifestyle.

So go on, get involved and sign up for one of our fundamentals courses! Whatever your age, there is no reason to let a number stand in the way of you and the incredible world of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.

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