7 ways to memorize techniques in martial arts, self-defense and combat sports can help you build an important technical baggage.
Learning techniques in martial arts are essentially related to the repetition of exercises and techniques.
The problem arises when a lot of time passes between an exercise or the execution of some techniques that often go into oblivion.
But no one wants to forget the technical baggage so I was asked a question that I think many are done for several reasons:
“How can I remember all the techniques I learn in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu?”but the same question can also be addressed to all other arts.
Answering this question is not easy.
There are a lot of possible answers based on the type of person you are being a learning method and all or none of which can help.
But we are practical and between nothing and do we prefer to do and so I tell you some methods of how I do my team and I.
I want to show you 7 methods to memorize the techniques:
Method 1 – Write notes as soon as you leave the gym.
What I’m talking about is the personal method I’ve been using for years.
When you come home from training, write through the whole lesson including the warm-up and anecdotes of the master, write the notes immediately the same day.
I usually did it while eating with a notebook next to me or relaxing on my carpet or in the car, on the buso, subway or while waiting for someone for a date so you don’t waste time.
In the morning, take the notes and read them back and add the details you think are appropriate if you didn’t mark it the night before.
Add anything that can help you remember drawings, sketches, etc.
If you realize that you do not remember some detail then when you go to train ask the teacher or a training partner for the technique that you have not understood.
I have always done so and this allowed me to remember all the technical baggage.
At first I would write them by hand on notebooks and then slowly I transcribed them in digital format and now I always insert them into my personal ebook that is now made from thousands of pages and sketches of drawings and images.
Get used to doing it regularly and during class focus on remembering everything.
It’s like an exercise the more you often do it the faster you become.
Method 2 – Videos, film with video cameras or mobile phone
Today that I have more “evolved” systems I do my own technical video gallery but I have created a studio where I have fixed rooms placed and I do very fast.
I don’t do it every day but as soon as I can with a friend or a partner.
Honestly few times it is allowed as you know we live in a modern time where we all have mobiles that shoot in 4K with incredible resolutions.
When it is possible and desirable, video recording of the techniques is very useful because you can review the video several times.
But I repeat that some instructors indeed almost all do not agree with their material being recorded, always ask before pointing a camera at another person.
I personally do not allow to record but I provide my students with other possibilities that I do not explain now.
I do this because otherwise they do not strive to memorize techniques during the lesson.
I have never been a student in a private class or internship to be able to record videos, only one instructor asked me to resume the whole session and another allowed me to record the entire session, but often they are tests or tests that you want to do.
Usually the filmer is a member of the staff.
Method 3 – Notebook
A coach I’ve worked with in the past always suggested bringing a notebook to class with which to take notes.
If you are the type of person who can take effective notes on the fly is fine, this will allow you to document step-by-step procedure for the movements you learn.
Ultimately this depends on how you take notes to figure out if it really helps memorize techniques.
Personally this did not help me because I preferred to look at the technique well and memorize it, I tried to take notes many times during internships or workouts, but it did not help me.
At most I mark the list of techniques.
During my internships one thing I do to help memorize the course is to provide a program of the day with the list of what will be done during the internship but be careful because if on the one hand it is very useful for those who participate but imposes a predetermined path that you often can not respect if you do not understand the technical balance of the people who participate.
It’s a useful tool but you need to know that it imposes few variations on you if you realize that the level is too low to perform certain things.
Method 4 – Drills with partners
One of these is the drills that is for me the key to internalizing the technique and then I write notes.
If immediately after learning a new technique you repeat it dozens and hundreds of times empty or even better with a training partners, try during the lesson is fine but it is also useful if you review what you did the time before and review during the break or before the lesson begins.
If you repeat the techniques you have previously learned in the following days and weeks, the chances of these techniques entering your repertoire are very high.
Method 5 – The display and the void. Drills only
This is a method I use a lot which is to visualize and perform vacuum movements as if there were a real companion.
You have to perform the movements step by step mentally and also in a vacuum but you have to focus to make sure that in your mind is real.
There are only many drills that help you memorize techniques.
Method 6 – Train with other instructors
The best way to memorize techniques is to learn the same techniques again regularly.
Yes, you understood well as if you did not know them and retrace the whole process mentally and physically.
When possible, learn the same techniques you already know or think you know from new instructors with whom you normally do not work (you know, when visiting other schools and gyms).
I learned an impressive number of details simply by training with instructors and training partners that I don’t see often.
Often you will notice that they do the same techniques but with different details or emphasizing on some aspects that can become part of your game.
Method 7 – Mind maps
This learning method is related to how you memorize the concepts that are explained to you and tie them together.
Explaining the same thing everyone draws a personal mental map.
I recommend you read Tony Buzan to understand how to best use this learning technique that I am using now.
Remember that those who learn the concepts go on, it does not have to be a job done to remember techniques.
So many people unfortunately devote themselves to learning new neat and clean moves instead of the general concepts behind the technique and that make the work in motion, functional, adaptable.
Don’t become a collector of techniques!
A conceptual student has much more opportunity to internalize new techniques and create infinite variants by chaining techniques than those who learn individual techniques without understanding their biomechanics and movement drive.
Everyone learns differently and has different learning times.
Sometimes you need to come to terms with the fact that you may not be able to internalize everything you learn the first time you see a technique.
There will come a day when you are training and you find yourself doing some really cool techniques that you don’t remember studying.
Remember that most of our learning process is unconscious, meaning that it absorbs/internalizes things without an active or conscious process.
Today I used the reference BrazilinanJiu Jitsu because usually the techniques are very long sequences and are very complex because they have different steps and precise details that require a lot of attention but remember that all martial arts have important and fundamental details to make them work (hand positions, weight distribution, etc.)
As an example take boxing where it is only apparently simpler than other martial arts but in reality to work it requires attention to the smallest details becoming a science in the medium distance.
The length of the sequences and technical details as you have understood requires a large storage capacity but using some or all of the methods that I have written to you surely your technical baggage will grow considerably.
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