Weight difference causing problems

Discussion in 'Grappling / Brazilian Ju Jitsu / Wrestling' started by MA_Student, Sep 19, 2017.

  1. MA_Student

    MA_Student Black Belt

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    So I love Jiu Jitsu and it's fun to learn but I'm getting frustrated because I'm not the biggest guy. I'm 6'2 and 11 stone and I think I'm okay technically obviously not great but I know my techniques and I can work them but when it comes to rolling a lot of times I just can't do anything to guys who are bigger than me. Not even strength strong but heavier. E.g tonight there's a guy who's trained maybe a few weeks and he's about my height but must be about 6 stone heavier and I just couldn't do anything or move him off because of the weight

    I know it's a learning curve but frankly it is disheartening when you train 4 times a week and get beat by a guy just because he's fatter than you and I don't mean that to sound rude or offensive but it's just what seems to be happening.


    I know my techniques because when I roll with someone either my size or smaller than me I do okay and my techniques and sweeps they work well but it's just the weight difference. I don't know how to stop that. I've been doing weights and push ups etc to build strength and Im going to ask next class but just wondering if anyone has any suggestions.


    Also I don't have a problem with losing I know it happens and I'm fine with it but I find it frustrating when guys rely on nothing but weight and obviously have very little technique.
     
  2. kempodisciple

    kempodisciple Senior Master

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    There's a level people relying on just weight won't reach, and once you reach that point, those people won't be an issue. If they're using their weight and have equal technique to you that's different, but if they're just relying on weight there's only so far they can go.

    Similarly in striking arts you would have a pretty significant advantage over me from just reach (I'm half a foot shorter, AND I weigh less). Practicing my shoot in, I'm fairly good at people who are taller and rely on that reach, as long as I get in close. Same thing with fencing, a ton of guys will be insanely tall (6'6" +) and at first that seemed insurmountable, but when those people only know how to use their height, and I learned techniques to combat it, their advantage worked against them.

    It's all about your mindset, and focusing on mastering techniques/tactics that work for your body type.
     
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  3. drop bear

    drop bear Sr. Grandmaster

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    Different priorities. Win the scramble.
     
  4. kuniggety

    kuniggety 2nd Black Belt

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    With two guys with relatively the same amount of training, the bigger and stronger person is going to have an advantage. You're definitely a skinny dude... I'm about the same height but 3+ stones heavier than you. It's not always about knowing how to do a technique. It's when to use the technique. Ie how is their weight situated and are you using the right technique for the job? I've rolled with guys significantly larger than me. For example, it can be next to impossible to use a proper scissor sweep on them and so I use the variant of using a push kick with the bottom leg instead of a sweeping axe kick. If they're pressuring into you... don't let them. Play the open guard... keep their weight off of you. It doesn't matter how heavy they are, your legs are stronger.
     
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  5. dunc

    dunc Orange Belt

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    At one level it's about focusing on keeping heavier people at a distance (so they can't apply their weight) or on the bottom

    Of course there are times when you're stuck under them - in my experience a good option is not to burn too much energy trying to move them off you - with heavier folk this is really hard work and I end up gassing out
    Instead I now focus on defending and making small adjustments to slowly improve my position. Once they make a mistake, move to try for a submission or I can get into a sufficiently good position then, and only then, do I try to take the opportunity to escape
     
  6. hoshin1600

    hoshin1600 Senior Master

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    i dont have any solutions at the moment but i feel your frustration. its a hurdle for me too.
     
  7. jobo

    jobo Senior Master

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    the answer going forward is to put on 10 or 20 lbs of muscle, that quite achievable over a couple of years or so. That will result in you closing the weight gap AND being as strong as a horse. There is however no easy answer to a 250 lbs chap sat on you other than don't get sat on, so extra work on speed and balance and of course skill, the whole point of ju jitsu is to stop fat people sitting on you
     
  8. Tony Dismukes

    Tony Dismukes Senior Master

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    Here's the good news. Working with people who are bigger and stronger than you will force you to improve by exposing all your technical weaknesses. Smaller people who stick to jiu-jitsu end up being some of the best technicians. You just have to accept that it takes time to build that level of skill.
     
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  9. hoshin1600

    hoshin1600 Senior Master

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    I disagree. The answer is not to grow another 5 inches and put on muscle mass. The problem lies in technique and set up of that technique. So the answer is more skill not strength. BJJ is not strength dependant.
     
  10. jobo

    jobo Senior Master

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    of course its strengh. Dependent if someone has no strengh they couldnt stand up to get to the,class.

    after that there is no athletic event that isn't easier if you are stronger, there are ones that are more difficult if you heavier, but that not your argument, and ju jutsu isn't one of them
     
  11. MA_Student

    MA_Student Black Belt

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    No but it helps. I've always found this a weird statement about Jiu Jitsu not being about strength...well if it's not about strength then why do Jiu Jitsu competitions have weight divisions...I believe if a trained small guy fights an untrained big guy then the small guy wins but when both have some training and understanding then the big guy will probably win.
     
  12. MA_Student

    MA_Student Black Belt

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    I can't plain and simple that's just not my body type. I've tried in the past with my uncle who's a personal trainer but it just doesn't happen, I've got some muscle but my body just doesn't work that way to put on huge muscle
     
  13. jobo

    jobo Senior Master

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    10 lbs of muscle spread over you entire body isn't BIG muscle, it will be barely noticeable, but yes it will grow, possibly not to be,BIG, muscle, that to some extent genetically dependent, but it will most certainly grow, its doesn't really that a choice, that what it is designed to do.
     
  14. jobo

    jobo Senior Master

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    here is a " hard gainer that put on 12lb of muscle,

    the same Chanel has vids on how to do it
     
  15. gpseymour

    gpseymour Sr. Grandmaster

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    Some body types make it much harder to put on muscle. How old are you?
     
  16. hoshin1600

    hoshin1600 Senior Master

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    im not saying it doesnt help, that is obvious. the reason people say it about jiu jitsu is because it is easy to muscle through a technique. if someone is using a lot of strength then chances are there is something not quite right and they using the strength to compensate for it. i have never worked with Rickson Gracie but from what i have heard, when you roll with him it seems like he is using no muscle strength at all.
    if i was rolling with Brock Lesnar and he layed on top of me (i would die from suffocation) and i couldnt get out of it, i would not be upset about it, its just a fact he is too big. nothing to be done about it. but your post was indicating to me that you felt that you are having trouble with bigger guys that you felt you SHOULD be able to deal with, meaning they are not Lesnar"s size but a reasonable size for you to handle.
    listen to this guy talk about needing to learn to get over the hurdle of wearing a gi VS no gi. it can be the same mental hurdle of working with stronger guys.

     
  17. jobo

    jobo Senior Master

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    yet RG Seems to have quite well developed muscles,wonder why he bothered to do that?

    of course speed mobility and,co ordination comes from developing your muscles, maybe that why
     
  18. Anarax

    Anarax 2nd Black Belt

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    How long have you been doing jujitsu. Being 6'2 and 11 stone is above average and it's best to get experience with bigger and stronger guys now than later. It's nothing to get disheartened about, it happens to a lot of us. In fencing I had to adjust when I my opponent had a longer reach. They were less experienced, but got points on me due to their reach advantage. If it weren't for that experience I never would have learned to adapt and overcome that obstacle. That's one of the purposes of Martial Arts, to give you the advantage over a larger opponent.

    Talk your instructor and ask for advice on what you should work on to improve your skills against larger opponents
     
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  19. Tony Dismukes

    Tony Dismukes Senior Master

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    So here's the deal regarding jiu-jitsu and strength:

    Jiu-jitsu is absolutely about using strength. To be precise, it's about using your available strength as efficiently and effectively as possible, When you see criticism about someone "muscling through a technique", the problem isn't that they're using strength - it's that they're wasting strength. Either they're trying to overpower their opponent's strength head on (which will only work as long as the person doing the technique is the stronger one) or they're using their strength in an inefficient fashion which involves more effort than necessary, causing them to tire out and deplete their reserves of strength prematurely.

    That's how jiu-jitsu can allow you to overcome a stronger opponent. When I outgrapple someone who is twice as strong as I am, it's because I'm using my available strength more than twice as efficiently as he is.

    The reason top jiu-jitsu competitors are all in fantastic shape is that their opponents are in great shape and also know how to use their physical attributes efficiently. The skill levels are close enough that they can't afford to give up a huge discrepancy in strength or endurance or speed the way they could against a beginner.
     
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  20. Tony Dismukes

    Tony Dismukes Senior Master

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    Here's the advice I give to students who are frustrated because they are consistently getting dominated in rolling by someone for whatever reason (physical attributes, experience level, whatever):

    The trick to progressing quickly and not being discouraged by your lack of "success" in rolling is to change the game. More specifically, change the "victory conditions" of your game.

    1. In the beginning, you end up in positions where you just don't know what to do. Literally, you're not sure what you should even be attempting to execute. At this stage, your victory condition is to make a note of the details of where you found yourself, consult with your teacher (after the roll) as to what your best tactic should be, then come back next time and the next time you end up in that position actually remember what it is you should be trying to do.
    2. Now you end up in the position, you remember what you were supposed to try, but by the time your remember the technique and how to do it, the moment has already passed. ("Darn it. I had the chance for that double ankle sweep, but I didn't react in time.") Now your victory condition is to be alert and recognize the opportunity for the technique while it still exists next time.
    3. Now you know what to do, you see the opportunity in time, you go for it - and it doesn't work, and you don't know what you did wrong. Now your victory condition is to go back and review the details of the technique (consult with your instructor as necessary), so you can identify what you did incorrectly next time you attempt the move and it fails.
    4. Now you know the details of how the technique should work, you recognize the opportunity when it arises, you go for it - and it still fails. You realize that in the heat of the moment you only nailed about 2 of the 10 most important details for making the technique work. Now your victory condition is to get more of the details right next time you try the move. If there's one specific detail you always miss, focus on that. Otherwise just try to get more of the details right - go from 2 to 3, 3 to 4, 4 to 5, and so on.
    5. Now you're making improvement in your timing and technical execution. Once you're consistently nailing 50-60% of the important details then you'll be having some success against partners of your own size and skill level, but not so much against those who are bigger or more experienced. Now your victory condition is to roll as much as possible with those tougher opponents to expose your remaining technical mistakes and start identifying and eliminating them.
    6. Now you're rolling, you see an opportunity, you go for it, you get the technical details right (as far as you can tell) - and it still doesn't work. Maybe there are some details you're still missing - in that case go back to step 5. Otherwise there a couple of possibilities. A) You executed the right technique at the right moment correctly - but your opponent performed a counter you didn't know how to deal with. In this case your victory condition is to learn your best follow-ups to counter that counter, then go back to step 1 to start developing and polishing those moves. B) You executed the technique correctly - but it wasn't actually the right movement for that moment. Something about your opponent's position or momentum or his relation to your body made it so you actually needed to do use a different variation. In this case your victory condition is not just to learn the new variation, but learn to recognize the difference in the situation which requires one or the other. Now go back to step 1 again to start developing this movement.
    7. At a certain point, after you've been through steps 1-6 with countless moves, your focus shifts from individual techniques to the bigger picture. You understand that your sweeps only work when you've disrupted your opponent's balance. You understand that your submissions only work when you've disrupted your opponent's structure. You understand that it's easier to control your opponent's balance and structure when you have superior grips and angles. Your rolling sessions become primarily about fighting for grips, angles, structure, and balance. You know that if you win those battles, then the "techniques" will happen. You go back to step 1 to start polishing your methods for controlling grips, angles, structure, and balance.

    You'll notice that at no point in this process is there a requirement for being able to "beat" anybody in particular. You're focused on incremental gains which should be manageable for anyone with good coaching. If you're on step 4 and you manage to improve your triangle choke from 30% correct to 40% correct, then you can walk off the mat with your head held high and go home feeling good, even if you didn't tap anybody out. In fact, this approach will significantly speed up your progress in "winning" matches, but you don't have to focus on that to get the benefit.
     
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