Jiu Jitsu as an Older Athlete

Article written by Joby O’Brien; Jiu Jitsu Student/ Competitor


Joby O'Brien BJJ over 40 Jiu Jitsu older athlete

Jiu Jitsu as an Older Athlete

Getting started with Jiu Jitsu as an older athlete has had its challenges, but it gives something special in return. It has given me confidence, humility, patience, discipline and, of course, adrenaline. I was a former wrestler decades ago. I got started with Jiu Jitsu because I wanted to get back on the mats. I did not really know what Jiu Jitsu was, but it looked like wrestling. I was quickly educated in the difference between the two sports. It did not take long to get hooked on this fascinating martial art.

BJJ over 40

Being an older athlete changes things a little, it means I take longer to warm up.  It also means it takes longer to heal up. Dealing with injuries is something everyone in Jiu Jitsu deals with, but with the excellent guidance and instruction I have gotten, I have learned to train smarter so I can train longer.

Being an older athlete, and a family man also has its humorous side. Part of my healing strategy requires lots of ice packs. My wife and I are always competing for freezer space. She seems to think we actually need to  make space for ice cream, otter pops, and frozen vegetables.

BJJ over 40 Jiu Jitsu older athlete tournamentsAs much of an individual sport as this is, I quickly realized just how important my teammates are to my journey. When they get better, I get better. They motivate me on days when I am tired or sore, or just not focused. My teammates help me when I am struggling, and they are happy for me when I progress. I am so happy to be part of a remarkable team.

Jiu Jitsu Tournaments

Competing in tournaments has added a new purpose to my training. It pushes me to improve, physically and mentally. There is so much more to learn.

Jiu Jitsu is a funny thing, it can hurt your body and your feelings. Yet, you don’t want to miss a class. Teammates I talk too seem to feel that same pull Jiu Jitsu has on me. I am glad I found this sport, and I am very fortunate to call the Excel Jiu Jitsu family my team.

-Joby O’Brien


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About Excel


Excel Jiu Jitsu MMA is a family-friendly, full-scale mixed martial arts academy specializing in the art and sport of Jiu-Jitsu. We are about teamwork, friendship and dedication.

It is our mission to enrich student’s lives through training, to encourage personal achievement by building a sense of accomplishment through our many programs offered.
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