Keeps you fit
This is the first and most obvious reason why people in their 40s should either start training or continue to train. Many of them are worried to start because they may be intimidated by the younger “mat-rats” or are afraid that they don’t have the ability to really train. All of that is complete nonsense. Jiu-jitsu is made for everyone of any age. I’ve seen guys start in their late 40s and fall in love with the sport quite easily. They like it because not only are they making an effort to stay in shape, but they also learn some useful techniques. Sure, it will be harder to eventually get a black belt than if you started at 16 or 20 years old, but with consistent attendance and smart, injury-free training, a black belt can be easily achieved. There are many gyms that boast the fitness results of their BJJ program for many older practitioners, where they’ve shed a lot of weight and improved their overall lifestyle.
For guys that have been training all their life until 40 and wish to continue, well…they usually don’t stop. Jiu-jitsu becomes too important to their lives. They know the benefits. If anything, training when you’re middle aged is even more important than before, because your long-term health is being taken care of. The only important thing is to avoid injury. If you’ve already been training for many years, you know how horrible it can be to stay off the mats while healing. The recovery time also gets longer as you get older, so you have to play extra smart.
Keeps you thinking
You want to stay mentally sharp as you get older right? Well jiu-jitsu is an all-in-one way to stay fit and keep your brain strong. Everyone knows that there is a large cognitive aspect to BJJ. It has the nickname of “human chess” for a reason. Jiu-jitsu presents many mental challenges especially when you have to use more technique than strength. As you get older, you can’t rely on your strength and speed as much as you used to, so the pressure to use technique will force you to really think about good strategies and execute them during training. You have to become sneakier and craftier than your younger opponents.
Gentler than your average sport
Although jiu-jitsu is a full contact sport, it’s actually a lot easier on your body in your later years than many other traditional sports. Sports like hockey, basketball and soccer require a lot from your cardiovascular system to play at 100%. Meanwhile, in jiu-jitsu, you can go 100% and come home to recover for the next day. Again, you still have to train wisely and avoid injury – however, and unfortunately, many middle aged people do not know how beneficial jiu-jitsu can be for them when choosing a new sport to practice even for fitness. It’s easily one of the few sports you can train harder than other sports throughout your entire life.