Training MMA fighters and Brazilian Jiu-jitsu practitioners for 14 years I have seen a lot over the years.
Looking back as being the first to bring Mixed Martial Arts and Reality Self-Defense training to Eastern North Carolina. Things has changed but at the same time things has stayed the same too.
You should always be looking for a place that you can train that is always keeping it real. That is always stepping up to the challenge. That is why all of our instructors have had competitive backgrounds in BJJ events and a lot of times Mixed Martial Arts events. But at the same time teaching Gracie Brazilian Jiu-jitsu as a self-defense base.
I have seen over the years, where someone has only trained for the sport part of Jiu-Jitsu, and have done really well in those type of formats. But have had more problems converting over to other sports like Mixed Martial Arts.
People are more likely to say it is the Gi training that makes that happen, I say not. If you are always keeping in your mind while you are training “what if he started punching me? what if this was on the streets, or in a cage and I have to worry about his elbows?’ then your style of Jiu-Jitsu will be properly adjusted. Then you will have less of a problem converting your entry into other sports like Mixed Martial Arts.
Just like Rickson Gracie Stated in the documentary Choke. “ I believe that Jiu-Jitsu is a self-defense art….. To keep believing in what I teach and what I share with my students, to trust in my own words I must put myself available for any type of competition.”
Gracie Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu was never meant to be a sport as much as it was, the sport of Mixed Martial Arts was developed to show it’s strengths and also show it’s weaknesses, but as with all LIVE martial arts, it is always adapting to the situation.