Six Steps on The Comeback Trail to Training
Martial arts schools are starting to find their footing, as business owners continue to approach re-opening with caution. Before rushing to return to training, students should treat the last six months as what they were: a long break. BJJ practitioners are eager to return to the mat, but it is imperative that we take the comeback trail one step at a time.
Step One: Setting goals.
The first step is to set achievable goals. No one should expect to train at previous levels of intensity. You will get there, just as you have before, but for now, take it easy on yourself. Soak in the joy of resuming practice and ease back into the wing of things.
Step Two: Get in shape.
Next, assess your fitness level. Lockdown should not have gotten in the way of staying in shape and eating healthy. Sure, a lack of motivation is understandable in these trying times, but now is the perfect time to establish a new workout routine.
Step Three: Pace yourself.
Now, you are jogging, or taking a brisk walk on that comeback trail. You have started classes again. Take your time. No one is expecting anyone to go hard for at least a little while. Feel free to break this step into a series of smaller steps.
Step Four: Check your ego.
Picking partners probably will not be an option for a while. Schools are starting off with private lessons, one-on-one or with families. Still, if you are adhering to the steps so far, this is the perfect time to get back in touch with your warrior spirit. Prepare yourself to be smart with the challenges you take on, and eventually, the opponents you face. Sooner or later, it will be time to grapple, but you will not need to prove yourself.
Step Five: Do your homework.
With teachers in lockdown, students have been forced to search for drills on YouTube. Now, with a live instructor, you should be asking for exercises you can fit between sessions. There is no need to lose momentum as you pick up speed.
Step Six: Do not give up.
Know the fine line between knowing your limits and making excuses. Caution is to be expected, as is common sense. However, there will come a time when you will have to ask yourself if you are holding back. Fellow practitioners will always have your back, but this comeback is up to you.
Martial artists have an indomitable spirit. At the same time, we are still human beings. Before you mount your comeback, you simply need to remind yourself that the only black belts we wear are worn around our heart.