There are many positives that come with training jiu-jitsu, no matter what your fitness level or age you are at. Gaining self-confidence, losing weight, relieving stress, and developing new friendships are all great benefits that are associated with training.

Depending on what your purpose is for stepping on the mats, you may find yourself going through the motions at certain points of your training, or like you need that extra push to get to the next level. How can you add purpose to your training to push you that much harder to progress in jiu-jitsu?

Signing up for a competition is a fantastic way to do this, and you may see other aspects of your personal life improve too. I spoke with Professor Braulio about why he got back to competing after being out of the competition scene for 14 years, and the positive impact it had on him, on and off the mats.

Interviewed by William (Wild Bill) Mayer.

When was the last time you competed?

Professor Braulio
In 2004, I was a brown belt and competed at the Pan-American games. I won my first match and lost my second.

What motivated you to start competing again?

Professor Braulio
Our kids team continues to grow and so many of them compete on a regular basis. My son Braulio III, along with my wife Brianne, compete several times per year. Helping them train and coaching them for each event has given me the motivation to get out there again.

What changes did you make to your routine to help you get ready for your competition?

Professor Braulio
At a certain age, hard rolling takes a toll on your body. Old injuries seem to haunt you again, and at the same time, new ones tend to develop. To minimize this from happening, I started substituting hard rolling for other activities that push my endurance. This greatly helped to keep me injury free while training and the day of the event I felt great.

What benefits did you experience from dedicating your time to train for competitions?

Professor Braulio
Staying active, dieting, and training all have tremendous positive health benefits. You find yourself making better choices with food and trying to live a healthier lifestyle because you are competing. It has a positive effect on stress relief because most of your thoughts are focused around the competition and the personal gains you are experiencing, on the mats and in life.

What type of positive influence does training and competing with your spouse have on you?

Professor Braulio
This has been a great and positive experience for the both of us. We find ourselves facing the same challenges and helping each other through it. Having a spouse that helps and participates every step of the way makes the whole experience that much easier and more enjoyable. in life.

What were your most memorable moments during your training and competition?

Professor Braulio
My goal during training and competition was to have an active game to push my opponent to exhaustion. This was going to require a lot of endurance on my part. As the event drew closer, I could feel my training partners had to work harder to stay at my pace. At the competition, everything went according to plan. I stayed active for the entire match and my endurance felt great.