empowerment


A Healthy Approach to Increasing Your BJJ Training

  In my early years as a blue belt, I was content with training just twice a week.  Further in, however, I started to feel a prick of jealousy seeing other folks progressing faster than me.  I tried not to compare myself, but I couldn’t help but notice that one […]


Four Tips for Achieving Your Goals

  If you’re a fan of self-help books, you may be familiar with popular goal-setting strategies like starting small, having accountability, and setting up rewards.  However, even with these things in place, after a couple months, you may find yourself frustratingly off-track and no closer to your goals than when […]


Teaching: It’s All in the Timing

  If one of your BJJ goals is to become a great BJJ instructor, it can be hard to know where to start, much less how to improve. However, there’s one skill I learned as a classroom teacher that I’ve transferred to the mats, helping me feel at ease and […]


Learning the Language of Guard 1

  As a smaller BJJ player, I always thought of myself as a passer.  Playing guard always felt restrictive, a completely different world from the mobile passing game I preferred. Although I knew some techniques playing guard, I looked at guard as just a way to plug a hole in […]


How to Coach Sexual Assault Survivors 1

  Look around your BJJ class. One or more of your students could be a sexual assault survivor. About twenty percent of women, five percent of men, and nearly fifty percent of trans or non-binary folks are sexually assaulted at some point. In this article, I use “she” as a […]


Bald Strong Mona 2

  As if the pressures of being a teenager aren’t enough, imagine you also have a medical condition that makes you lose all your hair. While most teenage girls would struggle with their identity in these situations, Mona has thrived.  Mona is a 15 year old jiu-jitsu competitor with alopecia,an […]


Tips to Surviving Without Jiu Jitsu During Quarantine

COVID-19 is here, and we’re all trapped inside.   Almost all BJJ events have been canceled or postponed (ours included), and most schools have shut down.  We’re all in this boat together. So here are some tips on how to mentally get through this. Exercise, staying connected, BJJ videos, and other […]


Training With Your Significant Other

  Not everyone has trouble training with their significant other and that’s wonderful.  I’m genuinely happy for them. I am not one of them.  I am one of those, that no matter who wins or loses the match, or who is drilling the move while the other is the dummy, […]


The Betty Behind The Sweaty Betties

In 2008 in San Francisco, Mollii Khangsengsing was a white belt on the verge of quitting. Not only was training jiu-jitsu physically grueling—she was one of two women at her gym and the smallest student, by far, at 4-feet 11-inches and 93 pounds—it had also begun impacting her psychological well-being […]


Get Comfortable Being Uncomfortable 2

Like most practitioners, when I first tried Brazilian Jiu Jitsu I was instantly hooked. Although unlike many, I wanted to begin live rolling right away, as in my first ever class, right away. I saw it as an integral part of the training process and was eager to delve right […]