Earlier this year Gunnar Nelson was in Manchester, England to do some teaching at the SBG Mainline gym, which his own gym in Iceland - Mjolnir - has an affiliation with. While he was there, top BJJ videographer Stuart Cooper dropped in to shoot some training footage and ask some questions.
Of particular interest is the insight into his mindset. Notoriously unflappable, Nelson’s imperturbable calm is simultaneously a mystery to and the envy of many others in the game. But where does it come from? Nelson doesn’t know - he can’t pin it down to any one thing - but his comments on the subject do give food for thought for those of us that often find ourselves swearing under our breath in frustration after having tapped yet again.
“Its hard for me to know why I got good fast at this [sport]. I’ve never been anyone else so its a difficult question to answer but I might have some thoughts,” says Nelson, who made a successful UFC debut last month with a first-round submission win over DaMarques Johnson.
“I think that its easy for me to calm myself down and I find that when I train with people, talk to people and watch people, a lot of the time they look or they feel… stressed. Like there’s a lot of things going on in their mind at the same time whereas I am easily not thinking anything, to be honest.”