Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is a very complicated chaotic thing. The amount of possibilities from any one position and subsequent positions is staggering. Add to this counters, escapes, experience and chaotic synergy and this level of complication multiplies almost infinitely.
So trying to prescribe a conceptual understanding of such an unpredictable organism seems like a near impossible task.
Making this increasingly difficult; people speak different languages, have different learning styles, use varying terminology for the same thing (side control, cross side, side mount) and most importantly understand things on differing levels.
As a result I believe that using the game of chess to convey my concepts and theories is an appropriate platform to transcend the differences mentioned above.
Chess just isn’t another love of mine which I’m trying to crowbar into articles; it really is a great tool for understanding conceptual BJJ. I believe that Chess is to conceptual BJJ what writing is to thought.
For a writer, ideas float around and it’s not until they are tied down in the form of written words that they are crystallised and become easily accessible to others.
For a grappler, the same cognitive process is used but we have to demonstrate somatically what we theorise. Technology has aided our plight and sites like this allow us to share video and thoughts over huge geographical areas, but our transfusion of ideas are still thwart with the complex hurdles mentioned earlier.
Take a simple recipe for pasta - I can tell you verbally from my experience and more importantly what my mum taught me, (whose knowledge will have come from her mum and on it goes) but at some stage someone has learnt the ‘skills’ needed to make a simple pasta dish from reading the written recipe.
As the rules of grammar, punctuation and language corral us to set linguistic patterns, the structure in chess does the same for BJJ in a comparative conceptual setting.
In terms of BJJ, what chess allows us to do is play out theories and strategies in a controlled rule heavy environment. The chaotic element of chess still exists but the set moves that pieces can make and the size of the board means that the chaotic element of the game is slightly easier to digest.
So if you’re not completely aware of the basic rules of chess click here as it will help you understand the concepts which are due to follow shortly in this blog and via the conceptual videos.