Discussing Talent vs Work Ethic and much more – AMA 10 – Coach Zahabi


  1. I agree that jiu jitsu has such an exponential margin for growth because the number of weapons is infinite, but I do not consider it a good thing.

    When complexity becomes too extreme, fun starts to diminish. Right now, very very few people can understand what is going on in a high level jiu jitsu/submission grappling match. To give an example: Joe Rogan is a black belt in "no gi jiu jitsu" and a life long martial artist, but he was barely able to follow, let alone figure out for himself, the intricacies of the Gordon Ryan / Cyborg fight, when John Danaher was explaining them to him.
    On the other hand, Joe Rogan is able to get a reasonably decent understanding of the dynamics of an MMA or boxing fight, and many spectators can do the same as well.

    Now, I'm not saying that BJJ has to "dumb down" or die, but I don't think that the route it's taken is good either. Judo and wrestling have been "figured out", to a certain extent, because the rules severely limit what the athletes are able to do in a competition. In modern jiu jitsu, and especially if the rules are sub-only, you are not penalized nor incentivized to take any specific route: you don't even have to start on your feet anymore! That's what you call, in videogames terms, a "sandbox game". Which is great for the pure fun of it, but has a very limited potential as an engaging form of competition

    Sorry for the long post

  2. IQ is a physical trait just like the muscle fibers, a dense/heavy brain means an individual processes information faster, reaction speed, awareness, reading patterns faster

  3. The secret is Bs. That being said it isn’t a bad idea to focus on what you want. That part is fairly uncontraversal. However it goes further to say anything that happened in your life is a consequence of your thinking. When mrs. Byrne was asked about this and posed the question about those who died in a recent tsunami were responsible for it her response was “Yes” In other words if you got cancer then it was 100 percent your fault. NONSENSE ?‍♂️

  4. I disagree with you a lot at around the 15:40 mark, if we maximize our technique to the end limit, all that remains is our genetic potential. That's why sprinting is so talent based, because running is so natural to us, while running technique will never be perfected and can be improved upon infinitely (in the sense that there will always be a micrometre of a technical mistake here or there), that infinity is a smaller infinity than the degree to which technique can be improved upon in Boxing and even more so in MMA (so there is an infinite number of even numbers, but that infinity is smaller than the infinity of all numbers). Even though it's 100% true that Sprinting is much more talent based than Boxing and MMA, we already account for some percentage of talent/genetics with weight classes. In a real fight, would Demetrious Johnson beat Hafthor Bjornsson (The Mountain from Game of Thrones), I'd say sure, but it's not nearly as cut and dry as MMA fans would like to think. You also can't beat a Silverback Gorilla with Jiu Jitsu and by the time our technique is refined enough for us to be able to, Silverback Gorillas will be walking among us wearing tap out shirts, speaking Portuguese and eating Acai.

    The point is that as we maximize technique the only distinguishing factors will be genetic potential, however the counter argument might be that once we have maximized technique to an infinite degree, the exact optimal body type for fighting could be very different from what we consider it now.

  5. Do you have any career advice for a 30 year old trying to find their natural strengths? I'm an INTJ in Myers Brigg and in the middle of a career change. I love philosophy, psychology, and watching MMA breakdowns BUT for career, I am somewhat lost and bummed out.

    I just want to ask for career growth and 70k+ but the Tech field it seems like programming is the way to go yet I have no passion and talent for that. I also don't plan on doing HelpDesk for 5 years making 30-40k and follow the herd. Thank you and it's worth a shot for a reply 🙂

  6. Law of attraction teaches you to think positive and about the power of your thoughts, as you had talked about it in an interview (killing Buddha). It's more about a clearly imagination of your dreams and goals.

  7. I disagree a lot with what you said about intelligence and talent, but at the same time I have to show respect for the level you've reached in martial arts, so thank you for this episode.

  8. Agree with you, adding that in track & field you don't have weight category, so it's another factor. About complexity of (brazilian ?) jiu jutsu, how many techniques exist ?

  9. Genius mindset. Now with the talent part, does it not force more physiological and biological demands, e.i. overworking the body, faster recovery, hormone control has to be more prevalent.
    Legs infront of the other, to run faster, means to output more. Leverage and connection points with joints and tendons coupled with advanced hormone control, adaption, addition, removing waste factors in the body faster, break the muscles down and make them recover just as fast.
    How much would steroids play in a complex sport like MMA vs pure talent sport like track and field events per example ?

  10. The difference between sprinting and MMA is that the rules are very rigid with sprinting whereas in MMA the fighter defines the rules to the game more. Whichever fighter can impose his set of “rules” (wrestling, jiu jitsu, boxing, kickboxing, Muay Thai, etc) will win. Each discipline has its own set of rules. Thus, MMA is a game within a game. We can use any set of rules and combine them in whatever way want. This leaves large areas of deficiencies for each fighter because you only have so much time to learn the rules of each game. Any talent and/or genetic superiority you may have can be negated by changing the “rules” of the game to suit you. For example, the 250 lb boxer getting submitted by a 150 lb jiu jitsu player. The boxer could use his size and strength to pound him so the jiu jitsu player changes the rules by pulling guard. The MMA game is filled with fighters that exploit the lack of knowledge of their sports rules. Gracie’s started it but Lyota Machida and Stephen Thompson are more modern examples.

  11. Thanks for answering my questions Coach ? you said that you believe everyone has a talent and it is up to us to find it, but how can you best find out what talent you have?

  12. ??Would say Hard ❤?Work&PuRe DetermiNatioN??????Bolt SoMe just got a gift!Sorry Bro?Ye MMA?? EaT Dust ??Boy Your good?✌

  13. I record all your AMAs on my phone and my wisdom skyrocketed. I use a lot of your principles to get through my sluggish workouts. Keep em coming man, you're a great man.

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