If Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ) has a shape, then it would have to be a sphere because of the almost endless directions and angles the techniques are executed from. Coincidentally, BJJ students use the word 'roll' when they wrestle which fits that description perfectly. The thing about BJJ & stand-up Jiu Jitsu is you need a partner to learn and practice the skills – not normally done when training in the more traditional styles which involve movements executed in the air.
When partnering up, you go 'live'. This also includes partner work with Kickboxing and Karate. Your techniques have to constantly adjust taking into account the partner's size, strength, speed and agility. Students holding pads need to be reminded it is not about one person training only. They are supposed to be involved with their partner by observing and, if possible, help them along the way. My Thai Boxing coach, many years ago, told me that I needed to learn to hold the pads if I wanted to improve my skills so that I have a better understanding of the art. One of my previous blogs makes mention 'if you really want to learn something, then teach it.'
Going live is not about beating each other to a pulp. How is anybody going to learn anything if we revert to caveman mentality in a club belting exercise? It's about 'give and take'. Famous World Champion Kicboxer, Benny 'the Jet' always stresses that. The same said by BJJ professionals – going too soft, nobody is going to learn. Also, going too hard, nobody is going to learn.
Next time, don't get a 'shock' when I ask you to teach.