Tips To Increase Your Teaching Ability as a BJJ Coach

Tips To Increase Your Teaching Ability as a BJJ Coach

So, you're interested in becoming a BJJ coach, or do you want to level up your skills? But do you know how to really be a standout BJJ coach! or is this something you're mostly thinking about because it's your passion?

Teaching hand-to-hand combat is a lot harder than most people think, and the fact that many schools don't conduct a sparring class doesn't make it difficult for experienced fighters to teach. Being a BJJ coach is an excellent way to transfer your jiu-jitsu skills on and off the mat.

However, learning any valuable skill that involves excessive practice or repetition such as languages, will require a continuous and constant repetition of an artistically curated schedule. But don't let it seem daunting.  Read this article to know some tips you can use right now to become a better BJJ coach and help your students increase their grappling, sparring, and fighting skills.

1. Possible Reasons Why Coaches Want To Increase Their Coaching Ability?

  1. They want to improve the quality of their Jiu Jitsu classes
  2. They want to increase the number of students in their class
  3. They want to have more control over the class
  4. They want to increase the amount of time they can spend coaching
  5. They want to expand their coaching circle on an international level

2. Issues That BJJ Coaches Face

Difficulty in finding qualified teaching staff

A way to combat this difficulty is to create flyers or post ads looking for new instructors and also offer benefits such as paid vacations, a respectable environment, and flexible working hours. Additionally, BJJ coaches can become certified by attending any accredited course. Traditionally, a BJJ black belt will get teaching permission or a certificate from his master but there are some academies that also offer professional training for coaches. 

Difficulties In student engagement and low motivation

BJJ coaches face a common issue: There are capable students who are just not motivated enough to practice regularly and lose interest in the sport over time. To overcome this obstacle, coaches should create a regimented practice schedule and set clear expectations for students and teammates. Create a sense of comradeship and bonding among the class.  They should also be on the lookout for any signs of complacency among their students, such as declining motivation, bad attitude, or a lack of substantial progress.

3. Techniques And Aspects That Can Help a BJJ Coach Level Up The Skills

  1. Always keep learning. There is no better way to improve as a coach than by constantly staying on top of the latest techniques and sports trends. Keep up with the newest BJJ news and articles, watch instructional videos, and attend seminars to gain new perspectives on the game.
  2. Be organized. Coaching requires keeping records of student development and simply finding crucial details. Use a systematized approach for recording your classes, keeping track of drills, and compiling notes on technique variations. This will make it easier for you to quickly identify areas of improvement and guide students accordingly.
  3. Build relationships with your students based on mutual respect, understanding, and gratitude. Foster a positive environment by setting expectations, delivering quality instruction, and demonstrating genuine interest in each student's progress.
  4. Be patient with your students. It can take time for beginners to learn new techniques, adjust to new surroundings, or build confidence on the mat. Observe when they make mistakes, offer encouragement when they succeed, and maintain control while uplifting them mentally and physically.

4. Understand the Basics of BJJ

There are four basic positions in BJJ: back control, closed guard, side control, and full mount. Your options for victory in a given class-based fight are unique.

Learning the basics of every position is the initial step in evolving your great coaching skills.

You must know how to defend against different attacks, the transition from one position to another, and how to initiate a submission from any position. What are the risks involved with initiating the submission?  Once you have a basic understanding of each position, you can begin teaching specific techniques and strategies for each position.

5. Develop a Good Teaching Methodology

As a BJJ coach, developing a suitable teaching methodology to teach BJJ techniques to your students is essential. Here are five suggestions to help you develop an effective strategy:

  1. Start simple, make sure you start by teaching BJJ's basic movements and fundamentals before introducing more advanced techniques. This will help your students build a foundation to progress.
  2. Teach the real essence and spirit of “The Gentle Art”. Make your students get emotionally attached and familiar with the history and abstract values of Jiu Jitsu.
  3. Be patient. Don't expect students to understand everything right away. Allow them to experiment with the techniques until they're comfortable. This way, they'll be able to apply them during practice sessions and tournaments without feeling overwhelmed or frustrated.
  4. Use visual aids. If necessary, use visual aids (such as diagrams or videos) to help your students understand the moves and joints of the human structure.

6. Create Effective Lessons

  1. Start by creating a lesson plan. This will help you remain organized and guide you in the seamless execution of lessons.
  2. Utilize visuals in your lessons. Pictures, diagrams, and videos can be beneficial in illustrating the basic moves of BJJ.
  3. Use effective communication techniques with your students. Make sure to articulate clearly and comprehensively what you want them to do, and be patient with them as they learn.
  4. Be prepared to answer questions during and after class. If you can effectively communicate, your students will essentially understand and progress at a fast pace.

7. Use Games and Activities to Enhance Learning

To help improve the teaching ability of coaches, here are some tips for using games and activities to enhance learning.

One way to improve the retention of new information is to use games and activities that are mentally stimulating. For example, mazes or jigsaw puzzles can help children remember information better. Similarly, quizzes or brain teasers during class can help coaches remember essential concepts.

Another way to enhance learning is to use visual aids while teaching BJJ. For example, displaying photos or videos of techniques during class can help students understand the concept better. Additionally, creating diagrams or charts that illustrate key points can be helpful for both students and coaches. Finally, providing feedback throughout the learning process is essential by giving positive reinforcement when appropriate and providing constructive criticism when needed. Never target any specific student, especially in front of the whole class.

8. Build A Learning Environment

It's no secret that a great way to increase your teaching ability as a BJJ coach is to create a learning environment that encourages and supports growth.

  1. Create a relaxed, comfortable atmosphere in your classes. This doesn't mean you must be slouchy or unprofessional – ensure everyone feels equally welcome and comfortable during class.
  2. Encourage students to ask questions. This will build confidence in your students.
  3. Make sure your teaching methods are accessible and easy to understand. If you can explain concepts in a way that students can understand, they'll be more likely to remember and implement them later.
  4. Be patient with students – even if they don't seem to be progressing as quickly as you'd like them to. Every student is different, so don't get discouraged if they're not catching on as soon as you want them to. In time, they'll improve – keep challenging them and providing support!

9. Create Challenging Classes

  1. You should constantly provide instructions and give feedback in the best way possible, whether it involves showing a new move or answering their questions.
  2. Use different methods of instruction. Rather than lecturing from the front of the room, try demonstrating the moves. Spar with the students occasionally to give them a sense of confidence and identity.

10. Reward Students For Their Efforts

  1. Reward your students for their effort. Give them positive reinforcement for their hard work and taking their training seriously. This will help to encourage them and make them work harder.
  2. Make use of competition and morale-boosting drills. These sorts of exercises help to keep students engaged and motivated and can also help to improve their skills.
  3. Encourage independent learning. Make sure your students can learn on their own, and give them opportunities to try different techniques and strategies. This will help them develop their style of play and become more self-sufficient as coaches.

11. Encourage Critical Thinking

One of the most important skills a coach can have is encouraging critical thinking in their students. This means accepting work without critique and encouraging students to question techniques and concepts. Not only will this help students grow as athletes and martial artists, but it will also make them better coaches themselves.

One way to help promote critical thinking in your students is to have them volunteer to critique fellow students' videos. The more students are willing to offer feedback, the better they'll be able to improve as a team.

Having students come up with their own exercises or techniques is another method to get them thinking critically. This can be done independently or in small groups, and it's an excellent way for them to test their theories in a safe environment. Ultimately, encouraging critical thinking in your students is integral to understanding the essence of BJJ.

12. Use Video Tutorials To Supplement Your Classes

By supplementing your classes with video tutorials, you can ensure that everyone in your class gets the most up-to-date information. Additionally, video tutorials can help you to remember and recall techniques and strategies better.

You can access new and innovative techniques by attending meetings or conferences. Furthermore, you can network with other coaches and learn from their experiences by attending seminars or workshops.

13. Tips For New Bjj Coaches

In the beginning, if you're having trouble collecting confidence before demonstrating in front of the class, the best thing is to prepare and repeat. Concentrate on those areas which troubled you the most. If you are already teaching or thinking to start teaching. You might have the necessary knowledge and certain skills to showcase. All you need to do is to identify the weak spots and address the issues in steps. You'll be teaching by preparing for all the questions you might be asked, leaving less room for mistakes, and making your students' learning experience smooth and enjoyable.

14. Teaching To Prove Your Status or Raise Your Individuality Is A Big Issue

Teaching BJJ to kids shouldn't be something you are doing to get a popularity or self-esteem boost. Many people are drawn by the idea of the higher standing and prestige of the coaching title. That's not the point. Your sole motto should be to make your pupils master the skills and in the meantime inculcate the responsibility for using the skills for self-defense not for bragging.

It's not about becoming famous or being a person of reverence. It's about helping others to achieve something you have achieved. It’s about making the lives of other people easier just like people did with Bruno Malfacine, his uncle and coach supported him and now you can see his name among the BJJ hallmark fighters.

15. A Flawed Technique Is Acceptable

Yes, that's not blasphemy, but finding the perfect angle for an armbar could be a huge victory for the individual. After training for enough time, you'll easily spot a dozen areas where a student could improve, but it's completely different from being prepared to make those changes. Please give them a few suggestions and be aware that proficiency can't be achieved after the first few lessons. If you are pushing excessively, you could overburden a student.

16. Explaining

If you feel like you're talking too fast or aren't communicating things as you should, focus on your communication skills. It's an accomplishment to be skilled at a specific technique; however, it's a completely different matter to teach it. Ultimately, you might be competing with someone robotically thinking about BJJ. They might be able to perform their moves and then think about them internally.

In the end, you must seriously consider learning how to explain. It's not just about verbal explanation but also a physical demonstration of a simple move. If you think of John Danaher, he is an expert at this, and that's why he's an excellent instructor.

The purpose of explaining isn't just to create robots that can hit static moves. It's better to encourage people to think of BJJ conceptually and experience the tranquility of its fluidity. This will result in enhancing the students' skills, progress, and learning speed as they develop and grow.

17. Students Should Be Able to Make Mistakes

The first repetition of a movement is almost always disastrous, so refrain from rushing in with corrections as soon as you notice. Let your students play around and figure out the problem independently and let them think through solutions. Fear of failure and motivation to win can be an effective learning tools if you find the right equilibrium between pushing the limits and keeping the threshold of frustration away.

Teaching is a prestigious profession among all professions. It requires practice and repetition, as with everything else. Sometimes, your students won't be able to comprehend what you're talking about in the first go. It's okay. With patience, communication skills, and acute demonstration of the moves, you can become a successful BJJ coach.

18. Create a list of competitors

This is particularly crucial if you're traveling for competition. At the beginning of the day, it is important to ensure that everyone has arrived and is ready to participate. This will also allow the organizers to track awards. Teaching Excellence Is Not Measured by Awards, Titles, or Belts Won in Competitions.

The most erroneous approach that people are prone to believe is that if somebody excels in competitions, won medals, and is a famous personality, he'll make an excellent teacher, but this is not true. To clarify, being skilled at Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu won't necessarily mean you are good at teaching it. But there are exceptions like Khabib Abdulmanapovich Nurmagomedov, who is as good at teaching martial arts as exercising it in the octagon.

Whatever medals a coach has, regardless of the numbers, won't enhance his motivation to assist others who are not his own. Even if someone can do an exercise perfectly doesn't mean that he/she is motivated or skilled enough to have the capacity to break it down at an intellectual and basic level to teach others.

This doesn't mean that one isn't in conjunction with others, but it requires an in-depth understanding of the skill that you're going to teach.

These are fundamentally distinct concepts. Competing is focused on yourself, teaching is focused on the other. Competing is self-focused and more physical. Teaching is focused on assisting others and requires communication skills, solid knowledge of analytical skills, patience, leadership skills, and a thorough understanding of the mechanics that are taking place.

19. Engage With Students

Actively engaging teaching methodologies are proven to get results. A coach should always maintain a high, sparkling motivation to help students make corrections, offer advice, give information, and roll with students so they can learn from your techniques.

20. Last Words

This article provides some practical tips on how you can improve your teaching/ coaching abilities so that you are able to connect with your students on a deeper level and help them learn the material at a faster pace. By using these tips, you will be able to provide better instructions that bring results. So, what are you waiting for? Get started, put these tips into practice and see how they can help you become a more effective BJJ coach.

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