Over time, the practitioners of various martial arts have developed a state of mind when they firmly believe that their own martial art is superior to all else. One such example regards the sambo practitioners with their ostensible superiority over BJJ.
One such popular image came out, titled BJJ Virgin vs Sambo Chad. On the left, we have the BJJ virgin exhibiting all the worst things about BJJ. And to the right we have the Sambo Chad with the biggest strengths of Sambo. Is there any truth about this picture?
The Faults of BJJ
If we were to analyze any martial art, then we would undoubtedly find faults in it – many of them. Sadly, BJJ is no exception to this. There are several methods of practice that, unfortunately, many schools have implemented in their curriculum. For starters, many BJJ instructors fail to understand the importance of the wrestler’s base in BJJ. And so, they only teach their students how to jump guard or, even more pathetic, pull guard. Single-leg and double-leg takedowns are an unknown territory. This can spell a disaster in a fight when the opponent has the skill to pick you up and throw you head-first to the ground.
Also, there are some “BJJ purists” that believe that training BJJ alone is the only thing they need in terms of strength and conditioning. And while it’s true that practicing BJJ will strengthen your musculature and will improve how your nervous system works so that you expend less energy on average – it’s still indispensable to supplement your BJJ training with strength and conditioning practice. Otherwise, you may end up looking like the BJJ virgin in the photo, which won’t inspire confidence or admiration in anyone.
Also, the fact that many BJJ practitioners fail to supplement their training with strength and conditioning drills, makes their pushing muscles too stiff – and this makes them permanently hunched over forwards and destroys their posture.
The belt system can be considered as garbage, too, as there are people that put too much faith in it. There are students whose sole goal is to get a new shiny belt and, even worse, there are instructors that give students new belts very easily.
The Strengths of Sambo
And then we have Sambo – as presented on the aforementioned photo. There are compliments on the simplicity of the Sambo uniform, powerfully developed muscles all around the body, the lack of belt colors as measurements of skill, perfect posture and skills in the striking, wrestling and grappling arts.
But the fact is any martial art could be found to be great or terrible, depending on the focus points. Even garbage chi-energy “martial arts” can be found to improve your focus and concentration. So, we wouldn’t go so far as to say that Sambo is inherently better than BJJ. Both martial arts have their own respective strengths and weaknesses. And above all else, the importance of the particular school’s curriculum cannot be understated. If the instructors are good and if the students are prepared to follow the instructors’ teachings and advice, then the BJJ practitioner can become a Chad, as well.