Body Type in BJJ: It Matters Less Than You Think

There’s a whole lot to love about Rob Biernacki’s seminars. One of my favorite things: when he goes off on a fascinating tangent. Here’s one from his last visit to Solarte BJJ. What he offers is NOT the conventional wisdom on body types and corresponding jiu jitsu games. Rob’s insights give hope to those of us who love jiu jitsu and wonder, “Is my (stocky, tiny, leggy, older, etc.) body type gonna work with this?” Check out the video at 3:38 minutes plus the transcript below:

Does body type necessarily mean you can only play a certain kind of jiu jitsu game?

[Transcript from April 26, 2019 Rob Biernacki Seminar at Solarte BJJ]

[At] we have a Q&A every month for some subscribers. And we just had a question very close to yours. It was from a coach. The question was: based on body type how do I judge what to teach someone, what kind of game to tailor to someone’s body type? I won’t get into too much detail on the answer because I think we’re just going to post it on YouTube because it was actually a pretty good discussion.

But the essence of the answer is: it matters less than you think. Body type in BJJ matters less than you think. Because as long as you find something that people like learning they’ll invest the time to get good at it.

Right, so any of you who have watched any of my videos with Rory in them…[there’s the] blond guy taller than me. Everyone who meets him is like, “Man you must have a great spider guard.” [And Rory responds] “I f*ing hate spider guard. I don’t play spider guard at all!” Just because you have a body type for a game, doesn’t mean it’s game that’s going to fit you, for lack of a better term, personality-wise.

So obviously there are huge extremes—on one end if you’re 4′ 5″ and 200 pounds. You’re probably not going to do triangles. Your limbs are going to be too short and stubby. But outside of massive outliers, most people can do most things in jiu jitsu. And if you have like a personal affinity for something…if you just like certain things, you’re going to do them more, you’re going to be more willing to invest the time in getting good at it. And getting good at it is what makes it work.

So yeah, if you’re a tall guy, it’ll work better, easier. But if you’re a shorter guy and you just like this. You’re just gonna do it a bunch and that’s going to fix the problems.

Rob Biernacki BJJ Sweep Concepts Seminar: Video discussing body type in BJJ and whether or not it really matters.

If you liked this segment on “Body Type in BJJ”, there are several gems scattered among the seminar videos on SolarteBJJ’s YouTube Channel. We’re very lucky that Rob is happy to let us share all the videos from his seminars at Solarte BJJ. We’ll continue to add to the list whenever he visits. Below are the playlists for the seminars we’ve had so far:

Rob Biernacki BJJ Sweep Concepts Seminar

Rob Biernacki Passing the Recumbent Guard Player Seminar

Rob Biernacki Passing the Seated Guard Player Seminar

Rob Biernacki Finishing Details from Back Control Seminar

Rob Biernacki Rolling Back Attack Seminar

Contact us if you’d like to learn more about the concept-based Brazilian Jiu-jitsu instruction offered at Solarte BJJ!