A Gracie primer for the BJJ white-belt to move up the ranks

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Neiman Gracie dedica vitória à família, após finalizar no Bellator 163. Foto: Bellator MMA/Divulgação

Neiman Gracie dedicates his Bellator 163 win to his family. Bellator MMA.

With the intent to help out the practitioner who is taking their first steps in the BJJ gym, Graciemag compiled a series of valuable tips aimed at taking them to the next level in training. The tips were listed by a BJJ teacher who is undefeated in MMA — Bellator star Neiman Gracie.

The young son to Master Marcio “Macarrão” offered his nine best tips for the white-belt wishing to ascend to black-belt — all without losing the sense of humor.

Read up and let us know what your favorite tip is.

1. Start from the start. Get the basics down pat. Don’t be in a hurry to learn crazy positions. The basics are what always works, from white belt to black.

2. Get experience. What determines whether a pilot is good or bad is the time they spend flying. In BJJ it is no different — the longer you are on the mat, the better you get.

3. Train your defense. To be complete, you must be as good defending as you are attacking. Put yourself in situations of danger in the gym and try to escape them.

4. Don’t neglect your attack. Like Chinese general Sun Tzu used to say, invincibilty is in the defense; the possibility of victory is in the attack. A simple way to sharpen your attacks: Take a novice sparring partner and try to submit them always with the same move. This way you will be able to perfect your finishes to the maximum.

5. Take good care of the machine. Eat well, sleep early, don’t smoke and don’t drink. If you do everything your mom used to tell you, you will feel much better in training too.

6. Leave your ego at the door of the dojo. You will get squashed by younger and older people, but that is normal. Remember that that is part of the learning process. Be the nail today so you can be the hammer tomorrow.

7. Have fun. If you are not having fun, then it’s not worth the effort. Keep in mind that BJJ provides you with the best friends you will ever have and unforgettable moments.

8. Details make all the difference. For example, putting your hand a little deeper in the collar will make all the difference in your choke. BJJ is an art of details. Always pay attention to them.

9. Keep your mind open. You can always learn new things from anybody, from a white-belt to a red-belt. The more you learn, the better you will be.

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