What Is Truth?

M. Leblanc

Trainer, martial artist (Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu), avid self-improver

Leave your ego at the door VS. Keep your ego besides


‘Leave your ego at the door’ has, somehow, become the unofficial slogan of BJJ. But the fact is, that ego maintains the boundary between us and the outer world, in this case, the opponent that is. Without ego or with a weak ego, we’re very exploitable in conflict situation. During training, we use our body to help our sparring partner to grow and to practice allowing them to cause us bruises and...

It is believed that if unsure of the answer, it’s best to stick with the initial hunch


A common dilemma when it comes to answering tricky questions on the spot or taking tests of any kind is whether or not we should go with the answer based on our initial gut instinct. There is a generally perceived wisdom that if one is unsure of the correct answer that it is best to stick with the initial idea that popped in the mind. This perception was also checked amongst science and arts...

Water break – Is only drinking when told so really good for training?


In most clubs I’ve trained at, there were strict drinking restrictions during the class. We were offered a water break, which if someone missed they weren’t allowed to drink. Sometimes this break was topped up with a series of ‘life lessons’ on how we build character and toughness by withstanding thirst, or even, how spoiled we still are, because the coach wasn’t allowed to drink during...

The myth that low self-esteem is a major cause of psychological problems


It is generally assumed that low self-esteem and self-worth will lead to psychological problems for a person in the long run. Articles assuming this, point towards school shooting incidents as the attackers often were reported afterwards to have had low self-esteem and a plethora of mental health issues which stemmed from that. Similar assumptions have continued when it comes to mass shootings...

It is believed that there’s safety in numbers – the more people present, the greater the chance that someone intervenes


Let’s take two potential scenarios. One (Scenario A) is that you’re walking down a dark alleyway at night. There are just two other people there. One attacks and wrestles your wallet from you. The implication is that because there is only one person who could intervene to help you, you are less safe. In Scenario B you are in the middle of a large park in a city during the daytime with dozens of...

The myth that it’s better to express anger than to hold it in


There is an extensive debate on whether expressing anger or not is the better way to go about releasing tension. Based on earlier research, many people believe that failing to express anger in a healthy manner is a negative practices that strikes back. Moreover, it is often concluded that people who do not express their anger healthily will then express them in a much more destructive, pent-up...

Men are viewed as professionals, while women as hobby athletes


There is a strong bias around athletic performance by gender as men are commonly viewed as professionals, while female participants are primarily considered as engaging in sports for fun. In many countries, professionals are mostly referred to using their surnames. However, there is evidence that gender determines how people perceive professionals according to Atir and Ferguson (2018). In their...

How to prepare for a BJJ competition


Competition preparation is a hard beast to conquer: it’s like preparing for a high-stake blind date. It cannot be compared to any regular conditioning neither in terms of physical nor mental preparation. The preparation work starts when the thought of enrolling to a competition has matured into action. Even by browsing event calendars and their intro pages, you’ve already stepped into a different...

Is a day without physical training really wasted? – about the power of resting


A good number of coaches I’ve worked with repeated this message: anytime you skip training you give your opponents a chance to become better than you. That day is wasted because you didn’t get any further in your path and you are no better than yesterday. I have a very different view on this. The truth of the matter is, it is not only your physical condition that you bring with you when...

The belief that mental skills cannot be taught


Mental skills are one of the most significant factors ensuring high performance and success for elite athletes. One of the biggest myths in sports is that mental skills are born with and cannot be taught. However, overwhelming empirical evidence reports that mental skills can be learned and improved through practice, just like physical skills can be honed through exercise. Although there are...

What Is Truth?