Learn BJJ Sequences! How Combinations Improve Your Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

MMA Portsmouth

Training Tip – Learn Sequences!

Sequences are where the magic happens in Jiu-Jitsu , anyone can attempt a single technique but to chain that technique together with others is to learn the true nature and strategy of the art, its where the art really comes alive and gains potency.

Just like a boxer would never throw a single jab, its is the combination of attacking movements following each other that penetrates through a partners defence eventually leaving them a move behind and exposed and vulnerable to the finish.

Knowing why to attempt a single movement, i.e. a choke is easily understood but knowing

Why to attempt the next movement i.e. an arm bar because the arms were brought up over eagerly to protect the neck is part of a deeper understanding of BJJ.

Jiu Jitsu is a game of physical chess, and understanding the overall purpose of this game allows you to structure your moves together towards this eventual purpose.

Sequences are something I focus on a lot in our Portsmouth sessions and they can be focused in and up close on one area, such as a chain of submissions or as a connection of a broader group of areas such as a sequence of being on bottom and looking to move to top – then looking to pass guard – then looking to control and submit.

This teaches BJJ strategy, mindset and ethos as well as how to keep the opponent on the back foot and constantly playing catchup. if you know where to go next then you can do so without hesitation eventually leaving the opponent a move behind, if you are one move ahead then you are in the correct place to win.

Sequences don’t need to be religiously and dogmatically adhered too, there are more a framework to gain understanding and then once you understand you can recombine them in different ways and add and takeaway depending on the given situation.

This develops instinctual understanding of the next move and comes from learned familiarity through feeling which is gained by developing muscle memory from drills and rolling.

This is where Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and MMA’s training method of resistant opponents really comes to importance. the importance of resistant training methods used by arts such as BJJ for effectiveness has been seen and undoutably proved by their use in MMA, in Portsmouth classes I always make sure to stay true to our purpose of effectiveness and test everything we learn under live pressure.

Often in the more traditional (non mma) martial arts which often contain little resistance training in the modern times, their sequences of movements are practiced against a static opponent who is not moving much and not changing their structure in real time with the intent to win so they fall apart when put under pressure as the movements are too slow and forced and no instinctual method to counter and adapt in real time is developed.

In BJJ you learn to sequence moves but also to be fluid with these concepts your body is one whole antennae and is constantly reading what the best next move is. How correct and fast this feedback will be is based on how much high quality training you have done, how much time you have put in on the correct mats with excellent teaching.

Portsmouth MMA

As has been proven by mixed martial arts many times, to understand something on a conceptual level is one thing, to be able to do it is very much another and both of these must be trained to gain true ability of a martial art. Sequences give both of these as they are a form of physical practice that teaches on a deep level at the same time. They are done both in compliance to facilitate initial understanding and against resistance to develop practical ability.

Focus, Learn, Study and (most importantly) Practice how moves fit together and can be sequenced and your BJJ ability and understanding will increase dramatically.

See you at Training in Portsmouth!


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