BJJ Mental Models

BJJ Mental Models
Explore the conceptual side of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Black belt brothers Steve & Matt Kwan discuss the mental models, or universal principles, behind the gentle art.

28: Kuzushi
Jul 15 • 61 min
This week Steve and Matt discuss kuzushi, the Japanese art of balance breaking.
27: Instructor Series: The Dark Side of Jiu-Jitsu
Jul 8 • 73 min
In the final episode of our instructor series, Steve & Matt shed light on the ugly side of Jiu-Jitsu and the instructors’ responsibilities to create a healthy training environment. Topics include issues with your students, gym drama, cult mentality, and…
26: Instructor Series: Business Relationships & Networking
Jul 1 • 76 min
Steve and Matt discuss the business relationships and networking activities critical to running a successful gym. Topics include skill swapping, building logistics, the competitive landscape, neighbouring businesses, privates, seminars, workshops, open…
25: Instructor Series: Maintaining and Growing your Gym
Jun 24 • 76 min
Once you’ve opened your gym, how do maintain and grow your membership base? Steve and Matt discuss lead generation, advertising, merchandising, social media, websites, designing your schedule, and retaining students.
24: Instructor Series: Opening a Gym
Jun 17 • 71 min
In the second episode of the instructor series, Steve and Matt discuss Matt’s experience opening a gym. They cover what’s involved in making the decision, the qualifications required, targeting your customers, hidden costs, the path to profitability, and…
23: Instructor Series: Coaching
Jun 10 • 71 min
Today’s topic is coaching, and we’re going to discuss: going from practitioner to coach, teaching class, one-on-one instruction, coaching children, coaching tournaments, and teaching seminars.
22: Size Discrepancies
Jun 3 • 70 min
As the old saying goes, “the bigger they are, the harder they cross-face you from side control.” This week Steve and Matt discuss the perils of fighting larger opponents.
21: Surviving Bad Positions
May 27 • 66 min
As the saying goes, if you don’t lose you’ll eventually win. This week’s episode discusses strategies for surviving bad positions like side control, knee on belly, mount, and back mount.
20: Longevity
May 20 • 60 min
They call it your Jiu-Jitsu journey for a reason. Steve and Matt explain how to stay healthy and motivated for decades.
19: Injuries & Setbacks
May 13 • 67 min
Setbacks in your Jiu-Jitsu journey are inevitable. This week Steve and Matt discuss the strategies and mental models for dealing with setbacks, including injuries and life changes.
18: Guard Series: Retention Phase
May 6 • 67 min
In the final episode of our three-part guard series, Matt and Steve discuss the retention phase, where grapplers make their final attempts to prevent a guard pass.
17: Guard Series: Maintenance Phase
Apr 29 • 70 min
In the second episode of our three-part guard series, Matt and Steve discuss the maintenance phase, where both grapplers attempt to secure a passing or submission opportunity.
16: Guard Series: Engagement Phase
Apr 22 • 68 min
Introducing the first in a three-part series on the guard! This week Steve and Matt discuss the engagement phase, where first contact is made and the grip battle is fought.
15: Force Vectors & Leading Edges
Apr 15 • 68 min
Steve and Matt discuss Force Vectors and Leading Edges. These mental models are critical to maintaining your guard once you’ve lost the grip fight, or engagement phase.
14: Joe Peters v Marcus Soares
Apr 8 • 39 min
Steve & Matt discuss Joe Peters’ upcoming lawsuit against Marcus Soares. Joe is suing Marcus due to injuries sustained competing in his tournament. The results of this lawsuit could have broad ramifications to future Jiu-Jitsu tournaments.
13: Some corrections…
Apr 1 • 40 min
We’ve learned a lot since episode one. Steve and Matt issue some very important corrections to prior episodes. Listen and learn, this episode is 100% TRUTH.
12: The Art of Learning
Mar 25 • 72 min
Steve & Matt do a deep dive into Josh Waitzkin’s book, the Art of Learning.
11: Mindset
Mar 18 • 71 min
Regardless of your goals, managing mindset is one of the most important aspects of the mental game. Steve & Matt discuss what makes a healthy mindset.
10: Overcoming Plateaus
Mar 11 • 68 min
We all hit plateaus eventually. Steve & Matt discuss mental models for breaking through them.
9: Retaining Knowledge
Mar 4 • 61 min
How do you remember all the information you receive during your training? Steve & Matt explore techniques and mental models for retaining knowledge.
8: Rapid Learning
Feb 25 • 76 min
Steve & Matt explore techniques to increase learning efficiency.
7: Mindfulness
Feb 18 • 68 min
Steve & Matt discuss the importance of mindfulness and self-awareness. One of the quickest ways to make a rapid improvement to your game is to develop awareness of your mind and body.
6: Gym Culture & Etiquette
Feb 11 • 66 min
Steve & Matt discuss best practices for gym culture, etiquette, and how to be a positive ambassador in the BJJ community.
5: Finishing Mechanics
Feb 4 • 70 min
Steve & Matt explain how to effectively finish submissions.
4: Dominant Angles
Jan 28 • 66 min
Steve & Matt discuss the importance of dominant angles in Jiu-Jitsu, both for advancing position and shutting down your opponent.
3: Anatomic Hierarchy, Grips
Jan 21 • 69 min
Steve & Matt discuss Jiu-Jitsu mental models involving the human body. A great discussion on how to use your body as a weapon while preventing your opponent from doing the same.
2: Core Mechanics
Jan 14 • 62 min
Steve and Matt explore the three core mechanics of Jiu-Jitsu: Frames, Levers, and Wedges. All techniques in Jiu-Jitsu can be defined in terms of these mechanics.
1: Alignment
Jan 8 • 68 min
This is our first episode! Matt and Steve dig into Alignment, the unified theory of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu as described by Rob Biernacki from Island Top Team.