BJJ White Belt

This is Why You Roll Worse against White Belts in BJJ

Are you a White Belt in Brazilian Jiu-jitsu who feels better when they roll with a Higher Belt?

This is the question I received from our BJJ White Belt friend Brianda who asked,
” I’ve been training for four months and I know I’m improving a lot (everybody tells me), but when I roll with white belts. Why do I feel like I can’t do anything? When I roll with higher belts everything goes better and I can practice all the movements and submissions I’ve learned, is it normal?”

In this Chewy ramble video I discuss this common situation in Brazilian Jiu-jitsu.

So Why Do I Roll Better Against Higher Belts?

When it boils down to it this is caused by a couple things.

A higher belt (Blue Belt, Purple Belt, Brown Belt, Black Belt) is in much better control of the roll and is much more relaxed. This relaxed state is usually fueled by the fact that the higher belt can finish the roll and gain the upper hand at any point. This oftentimes leads higher belts to play down a little bit during BJJ training to allow the newer student to move around and attempt their techniques.

The roll takes on a back and forth flow dynamic. Rather than the super intense style of roll that happens when two people of the same level are rolling with one another.  So if you’re a White Belt and you’re rolling with a higher belt who is playing around a bit. This is why you feel like you’re doing better against them during BJJ training.


Why Do I Roll Worse Against White Belts?

In contrast you might feel like you roll worse against a White Belt. This is because a fellow White Belt does not have the security of being more advanced technically. They don’t have the same control a more experienced grappler does. So, instead they are fighting life and death when pitted against another beginner during a Brazilian Jiujitsu class.

The roll then takes on a much more aggressive nature and makes it more difficult to execute techniques. And this would lead you to think that you are doing “worse” during the roll.

I go into more detail in the video and share a few stories. But don’t worry, in short, yes this is a normal situation.

If you’re running into this as a BJJ White Belt. I hope the video is helpful!


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