Am I Too Old For Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu?

As Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu continues to gain more mainstream popularity around the world, the sport is seeing a very diverse and expanding demographic of participants. Men, women and children of all ages are experiencing the many mental and physical benefits that the sport has to offer. A common question many folks start to ask as they approach 40 years old is “Am I too old to start or continue BJJ training?". The answer to this question is NO, you are not too old. People of all ages can benefit from training. A better question you may want to ask yourself is "What is my goal for training Jiu-Jitsu?".

Many schools are sport oriented academies with a high emphasis on live sparring on a consistent basis. This is great for the competitive athlete who want to test his or her skill in competition, but this doesn’t have to be the primary reason that you decide to train. While many people do roll hard daily and actively compete, there are many others that just want to learn some basic self-defense, others roll to get some exercise and relieve stress, while others may simply need an outlet from the daily grind and enjoy the positive social environment that a good gym has to offer.

Whatever your reasons are for hitting the mats, the key here is to align your training intensity with those goals and your own personal fitness level. Always remember to “leave your ego at the door” and train at a pace that you feel comfortable. Resist the urge to amp the intensity up with younger or more aggressive training partners or individuals who are preparing for competition. Have no shame in tapping as early and often as you want regardless of what level belts you are rolling with. And last but not least, give yourself a healthy diet regiment and a proper rest schedule which will allow your body to fully recover between training sessions. Over the long haul, if you follow these rules, you will enjoy more training, gain more knowledge of the sport and stay on the mats for many years on your jiu-jitsu journey.

Oh, and here is a video to watch just in case you need a little more inspiration, this brown belt is celebrating his 80th birthday with a roll with his purple belt son:


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