Have you ever wondered what it would be like to date someone who is as crazy about jiu jitsu as you are? If yes, here are some up- and downsides of it.
#1 They understand your lifestyle choices
A few years ago my idea of a perfect weekend would be to go out on Friday, get through the hangover on Saturday and meet up with friends for some more wine on a Sunday.
As I began to enjoy training more than I enjoyed going out, my lifestyle changed a lot. I’ve got great memories from my partying years, but I can’t imagine living the same way today. If your default is spending your afternoons in the dojo, it can be tricky to work out a routine with someone who spends their time in wildly different ways.
Dating a BJJ person makes it easier to get along in that lifestyle sense. Boyfriends and girlfriends who don’t understand why training is so important to you, may often moan about you ‘preferring training to spending time with them’. Or tell you that ‘it will make no difference if you skip it just once’ almost every day.
There’s nothing wrong with that, but reaching a compromise can be tough. Having similar goals to your partner’s will save you a lot of explaining and sulky pouts from them (guys pout too!).
#2 It’s a great thing to have in common
Having things in common with your partner is obviously important in any relationship. But the point here is that jiu jitsu is a particularly useful thing to have in common.
From comps, events within the community, new techniques or even gym gossip there’s always something positive and interesting you can share and chat about with your significant other even when life is getting stressful and you’re exhausted. And remember, trying out bullshit techniques from Instagram videos with your partner at home is also a form of bonding.
#3 You can compete together
Not only is it cheaper to travel to tournaments together, but you’re also splitting the itinerary and logistical planning chores, supporting each other and as a side effect – going to cool places. Unless they are fighting at the same time, you can be sure that your partner will record your matches and by the end of the day you’ll have someone to celebrate victories or mourn losses with (usually over an all-you-can-eat buffet).
Regardless of the result(s) it’s always a cool experience that you went through together!
#4 You can learn from each other
Well, at least one of you can. 😇
Unless your levels of experience are very similar, the person who trained for a shorter time will usually benefit from the learning aspect a bit more than their partner.
But in the long-run both sides will acquire and share useful knowledge with each other. This is not strictly limited to BJJ skills, but also tips on nutrition or dealing with injuries. In the end it’s not one-sided.
#1 Post-breakup awkwardness
I bet this is something you’ve considered before, but whether it will bad or not mostly depends on you.
Post-breakup team changes by one half of the former couple are not uncommon, but some people make it past the initial awkwardness and go on training together and being on friendly terms.
On the other hand… this has never stopped anyone if they really fancied the other person. And I doubt it would stop you!
#2 Loss of interest
Many people switch to BJJ from other sports or activities, but this can also happen the other way round. While most of us can’t understand one someone would do such a crazy thing, it can be particularly challenging if that person is your boyfriend/girlfriend.
If you work full-time, such a change significantly limits the amount of time you can spend together and of course you no longer have it in common (see upside #2). Whatever your significant other is now into is a whole new world to keep up with aside from BJJ and everything else. They will likely want you to be a part of their new ‘thing’, which puts pressure on your time.
In conclusion, it would be easier if people addicted to BJJ stayed that way.
#3 Getting Injured
Do you remember how grumpy and whiny you were when you couldn’t train due to injury?
When one of you is injured, the other is still there to support them and be the voice of reason. But what happens if you’re both injured at the same time?
Frustration that starts with an injury and being deprived of the ability to do what you love, slowly starts spilling onto other parts of your life. Small, annoying things that you manage to ignore when you’re happy training, suddenly become infuriating. The excess of free time means that inevitably you get bored, which makes you even more annoyed.
When you’re both feeling this way there is no way that your relationship won’t be affected by this. But if you can survive it without murdering each other many other things will seem easy.
If you’re already a part of a jiu jitsu couple – what has it been like for you?