Envolve as a BJJ teacher

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August 18, 2017

by Prof. Renato Miglaiccio


When people call someone Creonte in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu,

Creonte means traitor, the guy who change schools and want to train someplace else.

Here is my perspective, and it’s not right or wrong, but it’s working fine for me. I am actually evolving a lot from this old idea of creonte and evolving myself as a coach and mentor. I do know that many people might disagree with me.

You might learn something here from this article. But the most important thing is being open minded and trying to learn constantly and evolve so your students don’t leave your academy.

So in Brazil the context is a little different than here in United States. One train BJJ in Brazil with the idea of getting better in jiu-jitsu will bring him a better in life.

Because jiu-jitsu can take them from poverty to a relatively decent lifestyle for Brazilian standards. But again, many people they didn’t have much education, they didn’t have much opportunities to become an elevated person, a person that can actually teach the students also how to evolve. And if you fast forward you will encounter many BJJ instructors with not much life knowledge but very good in Jiu Jitsu.

Some remain humble and some get very cocky with their BJJ accomplishments although not many knowledge in other areas of life.

And here is the problem, not understanding what many a times students are looking for. Students are looking for knowledge on and off the mats.

The main point here is that elevated person might not lose students and if they do they might not be angry, they will look into themselves and try to understand what went wrong.

Well of course there are times that people approach you just to use you and then leave to the next shining object. That is common and sad but we all can sense it from the beginning of the relationship. The guy is just a user, a taker and does not help the school to improve, only wants to improve himself, and move to a next target. This is the real Creonte.

When you want to start any martial arts or Brazilian jiu jitsu, do your homework, look for schools, try them all and check which culture you relate more and understand they are not perfect but they are the closest to you.

Once you have picked your school and started your training, I particularly, don’t like much when other students go to other schools, because each school has a culture, each school has a form of teaching, a form of seeing the martial arts as a sport, martial arts or self-defense.

So that’s the problem when a not matured jiu jitsu student start seeking training somewhere else, often times they come back again a little confused and they start being a problem in class because they disagree here and there and generating problems.  Students mostly with white and blue belt do that.

In another hand, when you become a Black Belt or Brown and you go train somewhere else, that’s great!

You already training for about 5-6-7 years if you know the schools which is actually recommended to go train, where to go get better, where respect and growth is a must.

Then when you are back to your own school you can humbly share knowledge and it will work like a mastermind where many minds working together towards the evolution of jiu jitsu and not just one teacher thinking over and over again about techniques.

But then the person (brown belt student) already respects and understand the culture of his own school and does not question nor doubt nor create trouble.

Networking and experience is great and when one is ready to create their own school they can exercise whatever culture they like or want.

Another sad part in the martial arts training is when people/students expect. In many martial arts exists the idea of earning to learn. But with the modern times and professional schools and teachers, people walk in the jiu jitsu schools and think like a customer, I am paying, you should treat me like I want.

Not true, the secret to have an amazing school is knowing that you, as head coach, should have your culture according to your standards and values and if one student does not respect it, it is fine, you can’t make everyone happy, just tell the student to look for someplace else. In another words a student should not rule your school just because he is paying for it.

This is the commercial part of martial arts, I understand that every school must get a little commercial here and there to survive but it should not overcome the martial arts philosophy or the culture of the school. Fire students that disagree with your moral values and work ethics, don’t keep them because of the money, let them find their way, there are plenty of good people out there.

But you have to understand that, you might be the problem, and that is why you don’t have many students, or students are leaving you because of your manners and values not because they are creontes. so then it is time to change and evolve as a person.

I have been trying to read a lot, some psychology books, go to seminars, I attended a lot of the Tony Robbins events which has helped me a lot to evolve as a person and into better coach.

I understood that people are seeking for knowledge beyond jiu jitsu  and that’s what most of the Brazilian jiu-jitsu instructors are lacking.

First of all, people want to be entertained more than they are actually looking for knowledge. But you got to give them knowledge without them knowing that they are learning.

So, it’s very sad when we see a Black Belt that can barely talk nor influence their students at least into a better hard work person.

A Black Belt that cannot influence anyone because people just see the good on the mats and not off the mats.

I just recently saw a student of mine doing an interview with other Black belts observing the way they talked, you could see the difference. My student has a Master’s degree. He looks for information outside, he did courses not only in martial arts, but psychology, physical fitness, he is an open minded person.

He is a person that can survive beyond jiu-jitsu and he is bringing in and all this greatness into jiu-jitsu. So, in his interview, he was far beyond the other Black Belts the way he talks, the way he postures himself, making the other look bad, Not on purpose, but it happened.

Anyways, so and that’s what we try.

We try to make our students to get great beyond jiu jitsu, to learn how to live with jiu-jitsu and use the jiu-jitsu as a tool to get better in their field, in their industry.

They will never be scared of losing a job because now they have a passion to seek for a better life because they will be seeking for evolution, everyday.

To finish, I prefer instead of being a teacher, to be a mentor because you might have many teachers. My students go and learn from anyone.

I have students in Europe, it’s impossible, I don’t live in Europe, they go and learn somewhere else, they learn from seminars and I tell them to do this.

Some students, unfortunately ended up liking more other teachers, it is ok, they want someone  else, again, I cannot make everyone happy.

But most stay and they know the benefits that I am providing with the mentorship not only teaching. Mentoring them how to have successful schools, how to build great students and great culture, who to learn from, martial arts values, morals and hard work ethics.

If you want to grow as an instructor invest in yourself. Make an instructor course, first aid, courses about personal development …. – do not limit yourself to only BJJ techniques. 

We are offering our instructor course at your V. BJJ intensive Camp 26. – 29. October 2017 in Kärnten/Austria! For more infos please visit out BJJ intensive Camp site!




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