Jiu-Jitsu Letter

It's Not the Olympics

The other day, I had a crappy1 round with a visitor. He passed my guard early in the round, and I never got a reversal before the buzzer. He was attacking non-stop and I was stuck in a cycle of defense when I should’ve been counter attacking.

Though I was able to stop all of his submission attempts, I wanted to show him another part of my game. It’s hardest when you get only one round with someone and you know you’ll likely never see him or her again.2

The Olympics is the most prestigious sporting games because they happen only every four years. Athletes train for their moment, and most only get that one shot.3 So when an Olympic athlete chokes, gets injured, or just doesn’t peak at the right time, it’s devastating.

Jiu-Jitsu class is not the Olympics. No one cares that you got stuck on bottom for five minutes. Well, except maybe your partner who probably had a wonderful rest of the day. But maybe not wonderful. Because maybe he was frustrated that he had a dominant position for five minutes and couldn’t get the tap.

  1. It felt crappy for just a moment. It’s all perspective. But I’ll admit it was on my mind for a large portion of my drive home. ↩︎

  2. Of course, it was harder still because he was a lower rank! Ha. ↩︎

  3. By the way, why do they have so many swimming races? If freestyle is the fastest, why have contests for slower techniques? How come in track and field, there isn’t a race for running backwards, or one where you have to slide under hurdles? ↩︎

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