You always go out alone: Jiu jitsu is an odd sport insofar as it is practiced as a group but when it’s time to it’s you and you alone who out in the mat. You can be surrounded by your friends, coaches and teammates but when your name is called it’s only you that walks out. This dichotomy between the social aspect of group training and the inner loneliness of your solo performance is at the of your Jiu jitsu experience. It manifests itself in athletes in dramatic ways – some athletes excel in the gym and struggle on the stage. Others look ordinary in the gym and shine on stage. The thing is to grasp the significance of the fact that ultimately you can be given all manner of advice, comfort and encouragement by everyone you know – but it’s YOU and you like who will have to perform – so make sure you develop a game that suits YOU and and that your game is an expression of who YOU are – not anyone else. Just as you can easily see when a person is not comfortable inside their own skin, you can easily see when an athlete is not comfortable with their own game or match persona. So when it’s time to build your game – yes it’s good to take advice and from the experience of others – but don’t do so to the extent that your game is more an expression of someone else’s Jiu jitsu than your own, because when your name is called they won’t be coming out on the with you