As a way to draw inspiration and occasionally troll, I am an avid lurker on reddit… I recently came across an interesting question about the amount of time one trains that I thought worth exploring in a post here:
“Due to my work schedule I can only make it to the gym 1-2 a week. Everyone I came across told me if I want to go somewhere with jujitsu I need at least 3 sessions a week. The instructor flat out told me that if I’m only be able to train 1-2 times a week it’s unlikely I’ll ever last long enough to see myself improve let alone getting promoted.
Am I wasting my time? Is jujitsu just not meant to be for me?”
This is a FANTASTIC question, and there are several layers to the answer I’m going to give…
It all depends on your intentions and expectations.
If your intention is to become an active and/or successful competitor, you’re wasting your time for sure. I’d say that a bare minimum for someone who wants to compete at a decent level is 5 days a week and even that is sparse if you’re talking IBJJF. But not everyone wants to be a world killer.
The instructor mentioned above has a point; if you’re brand new and you’re only training 1-2 times a week you’re probably gonna wind up getting frustrated and quitting. People who started at the same time as you are going to be running circles around you in no time, and it’s going to take a very long time to get promoted… But none of that necessarily matters.
So here are my 2 cents on this matter: if you train 1 or 2 days a week that’s 1 or 2 days of skill development that you didn’t otherwise have, that’s 1 or 2 days of learning skills and getting .01% better at something that you like enough to post on Reddit about. Are you likely to reach black belt inside of 15-20 years training 2 days a week? Probably not unless you train in a McDojo atmosphere, but you’ll reap at least SOME of the benefits of jiu-jitsu.
If you like jiu-jitsu and you want the benefits jiu-jitsu has to offer you, train as much as you can. Also there are creative ways to train more than 2 days week even on a tough schedule. You can work on movement drills at home, you can get mats and lure other students from your gym to your house for snuggles and snacks. You can find gyms in the area that have class times more conducive to your schedule and drop in for classes (or if all else fails actually change gyms altogether.) The jiu-jitsu lifestyle isn’t about a specific number of times a week training, it’s about making training a priority as much and as often as possible.
Jiu-Jitsu is a journey, not a destination. It’s a marathon not a sprint. I’ve had periods in my life where I trained once every six months, and I’ve had periods where I didn’t train for a couple of years. But because I love jiu-jitsu, I have always made an effort to keep it in my life as much as I could, and I suggest that if you’re the person who posted this on reddit and are reading it, you do the same.
For those of you out there who have experienced similar things as fisterpriceplaystool, what did you find to be the answer to the question? Is training 1-2 days a week a waste of time?