I train Brazilian jiu-jitsu about 5-6 days of the week. I started in September 2016 and became obsessed immediately. The end of 2016 was a tough time for me personally and I attribute a lot of my emotional fortification to learning Brazilian jiu-jitsu. I’m still an addict and highly recommend it if you want to feel like you can defend yourself or if you want a challenging new sport to try that is super fun.


Brazilian jiu-jitsu has been very instrumental for me in the development of my character and the qualities I desired for myself that I knew I should have and didn’t at the time like self-confidence, the ability to defend myself properly or a physical outlet that was easier on my body than basketball, which my back and knees could hardly afford anymore. 

Jiu-jitsu is a martial art based on control and manipulation of the limbs and head of an opposing person. As such it teaches valuable concepts of redirection, defense, posture control, progression, mechanical problem solving and mental fortitude under intense pressure. These concepts can be used just as well in application against the many varying attacks from depression.

Brazilian jiu-jitsu, yoga, meditation... Why? I don’t know… Each is a way to find yourself. Each gives you an opportunity to see who you truly are. Who you are when you’re on the brink of death... Each trains you to die over and over again, overcoming your fears and traumas. Each is helpful to do when you’re down and out, you always feel better afterwards. It never fails. I’ve dragged myself into class and left happy every time. It is mood boosting. The cardio, the camaraderie, the aggression and the life-or-death aspect of the game.

Brazilian jiu-jitsu is about moving your body in a way to solve a series of problems. Yoga is about moving your body in a way to solve a series of problems. Each is a total stress test practice.

In Brazilian jiu-jitsu, you are facing a problem that is dynamically changing its presentation based on its expectation of your next behavior. 

This is a perfect stress simulation for you, because in order to succeed you need to become comfortable under pressure and comfortable operating within a margin of risk.


In yoga, you are moving your body to overcome the obstacles in your own mind to restore it to union with your body and your spirit. To become one with your self is to win. In yoga, you are your own opponent. But the goal is the same: Pinpoint the problem, overcome it with either skill or will, and integrate what you have learned so that problem is never again a problem for you. 

What else do I have to say about Brazilian Jiu-jitsu’s impact on my life in regards to my depression? It’s given me some of the best friends I’ve ever had. It’s given me tremendous self confidence, which has been tremendously beneficial in many applications. It keeps me in shape. It adds a certain distinguishing element to my character. I’ve also begun to rather enjoy the “don’t fuck with that guy, he does jiu-jitsu” comments at the bar. 

It’s a blast, man. Even if you’re a really huge fat old guy or really tiny young girl - You’d be surprised by who is in the gym training right now. People from all walks of life. Just show up. Your body and mind will become hard in no time.The toughest part is stepping foot into your first class. 

I do recommend it if you’re looking for something to do. Maybe you’ll love it. Everyone who’s cool does it. If you want to know what’s a good gym to go to in your area just get ahold of me online and I’ll Google it for you and tell you which one I’d go to if I were you.

If you live in the Fresno, CA area come train with me at Elite Team Clovis Monday-Friday 6:30pm, Saturday 9:30am, Sunday 11am.

(former Moore's Martial Arts building): 4127 N Clovis Ave Fresno, California 93727

Posted in Depression, Get Your Mojo Back, jiujitsu and tagged , , .

Anthony Polanco, also known as ANTP (@Antpstyle), is an American music artist, songwriter, and musician.
Marketing consultant | Kinetic AP LLC

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