What is it about BJJ that is so very addictive? What is so intoxicating about this art that attracts tens of thousands of people to the mat and keeps them there long after they have acquired the skills to defend themselves?
These are difficult questions to answer. For me, one of the most attractive and fascinating things about BJJ is that it embodies a beautiful balance between simplicity and complexity.
In the beginning, it’s the simplicity of the BJJ basics that are so appealing. A basic understanding of how to effectively transition from position to position and how to prevent our opponent from doing so can be a very empowering process. The beginner has many a ‘wow – I can do this’ experience when they begin their BJJ journey; and that in itself is a powerful motivator.
Later on, as understanding and skill increases, the complexity is what appeals. There never really is a sense of total mastery, there is always more to learn, new problems to overcome, new strategies to master. In this way BJJ is like the strategic game of chess – the challenges are never-ending; the complexity draws you in.
Both the simplicity and the complexity keep you there; and in being there, spending time on the mat, you cannot help but learn and improve.