How much should I train is a question I here a lot and the answers are wide and varied to be honest.
When you ask this question you need to ask yourself a question first, what are you training for? There are many different reasons to train and most of them would require different levels of training. I won't bore you with all scenarios, I will break it into 4 groups for you. And remember this is just my opinion, I'm not saying it is correct, I am just going off past experiences in Jiu Jitsu.
So the four categories are Kids, Teens, Adult Competitors and Adult Lifers. Lets start with kids, kids are pretty easy I think. I think at times parents can be too soft on their children and let them quit too early in there Journey. Life isn't easy, adversity needs to be learnt by everyone including kids. I always use Coach Bodey as an example when I talk about this subject, he cried pretty much for 2 years when he started doing Jiu Jitsu. I told him he could quit as long as he chose another sport he wanted to do, but he wouldn't because he wanted to stay at home and play the Xbox lol. Now look at the kids he is today, he cannot get enough of Jiu Jitsu. I'm not saying make them train something they don't like, but make them choose another sport before they quit, make quitting the last option for them. As for training and how much, I would say 2-3 times a week is good until Teen years. I am 200% against kids cutting weight for comps, my boys have never had to do it until they reached 18yrs of age then its there choice. I would rather have a happy kid competing, not a hungry kid who will more than likely dislike the experience.
Teens, this is where things need to get serious if your teens want to win Major comps going forward. Teens need to be training I would say 4 times a week (school Work Permitting). I know this isn't easy, but being the best never is. Trust me I hear so many excuses why teens cant train or couldn't train and I swear they think I was never in their position haha. If you want to be a competitor in Jiu Jitsu there is No excuses, you make it happen and make everything else around it fit in. It can be done, it comes down to you. About 6 weeks ago after a Teens class I said to our Teen girls that we could possibly have one of the best Teen Girls team in Australia if they put there heads down and bums up and make it happen. Guess how many of them have done every teens class since? Or even Half of them? ZERO, and that is only 2 Teens classes per Week lol. As a coach I can only guide you, there is real talent in that group but unfortunately not much commitment, and that happens.
Adults we have 2 types of athletes, the Lifer and the competitor. I am what I call a lifer, I love the art and I love training it. Jiu Jitsu is my life. Then we have the competitor which trains every session, goes 110% most of the time. So how much should each train, tbh I would say I lifer should train 3 times a weeks to keep their progression moving forward and a competitor should do every class available depending on belt level. Our Gym has a lot of white belts, but this year that will change and we will eventually have colored belt only classes, once that happens those competitors will grind even harder. As with everything your life situation will always come into this, but in saying that only you can make the difference between how hard you train compared to your opponents.
They say in any martial arts gym you will be lucky to have 2-5% competitors and the rest will be just lifers. There is absolutely nothing wrong with being a lifer, I am one. But if you want to be that competitor, that best in Australia or best in the world you need to look at yourself and ask am I doing enough to make that happen? Our gym actually has a good amount of competitors and ones that want to be competitors and that is great to see, but remember it's not just up to your coaches to make this happen, most of it is up to you.
Jiu Jitsu is the best art in the World in my opinion, and there is no right or wrong way to train, I want everyone training it as I think the positives it gives you far out weigh any negatives. training once a week is better than zero times a week. This blog was just a guide to give you a better understanding of what can be achieved if you want to put in the work. There is no simple solution in Jiu Jitsu, it is time on the mats and that is all that really matters...and being a good person.
Hopefully you guys enjoyed this blog, as always let me know your thoughts.