Jeff Glover Retires from Competing

I’m not dead, I promise- just in the great work/life/training/writing balance, writing has sort of been taking a back seat.

I just checked BJJnews to see what I missed out on while I’ve been buried under work, and I’m kind of surprised to see that Jeff Glover is retiring from competing in jiu jitsu. When it’s time, it’s time, I guess.

Anyhoo, if you are just a surprised about that as I am, check out the article and have a great day everyone!

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Keys for BJJ Success: Consistency and Accountability

If you really think about it, there’s really no secret formula to getting better at jiu jitsu: the problem often lies in people’s impatience when it comes to improving their skills and advancing in rank.

Consistency is important in a lot of ways: you need to consistently show up for class, drill and attend class on a reasonably regular and consistent schedule. While the results themselves don’t always feel consistent, keeping constant in your efforts to improve will eventually pay off.

Accountability in a number of ways is important: you need to be accountable for your failures- you can’t learn from something if you don’t take ownership for it. You need to hold yourself accountable to making it to class on that consistent schedule, and to get back to class if you miss a day or two. Taking ownership of your lack of knowledge, swallowing your pride sometimes and asking for help or feedback on something you aren’t executing on.

Again, not rocket science, but they are lessons that we logically know, but we don’t always know “heart and soul”. They are lessons that we learn over time before they really start to sink in. Once we do however, the road to improvement gets just a little easier: when we take ownership of our jiu jitsu journey and take consistent steps along it, we will eventually make progress.

Just some thoughts for the morning: have a great day everyone!

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BJJ Scout video on China IBJJF Scandal

According to a video from BJJ Scout, apparently a BJJ blue belt was given an “honorary” black belt for bringing IBJJF competition to China.

Personally, I’m baffled at the idea of an honorary black belt in this circumstance for a variety of reasons: I’m not against said distinction if the person falls into one of these categories-

  1. Has a ton of experience in grappling and beating bjj players, particularly members of the Gracie family (which is why I didn’t even bat an eyelash when there was mention of Sakuraba getting an honorary black belt- they call him “The Gracie Hunter” for pete’s sake)
  2. You are old enough that you will probably never compete and/or live long enough to actually see yourself get a black belt in the natural course of the ranks.

Neither seem to be the case for this person: not that it’s really any of my business, but I don’t think an honorary black belt was really necessary.

Anyway, check it out and have a great day everyone!

 

 

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Happy Friday! Giving Back Edition

The past 2 weeks have been a bit bananas, but yesterday my office did their annual day of community service- and I have to admit, it’s nice to give back. We painted homes, picked up trash (like, a lot of it) around some neighborhoods, in addition to other items that were sorely needed in the community we were working in.

I encourage everyone to try to give back to your community, in one way or another- with or without your academy (it would be nice if a bunch of people participated in giving back to their community, but hey, don’t let me tell you how your gym should operate). Whether that’s helping clean up a local park, dropping some items off at a local shelter, or some other act of service, you never know just how much it’s needed and appreciated until you actually get out there and do something.

That’s all for today- have a great weekend everyone!

 

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Competitions and Medals: A Tale of Progress

This past weekend a number of teammates and I competed at NY Open. Our people fought hard- won some, lost some, and overall left as better people for it. I had one match against a wonderful fellow black belt, we had a great back and forth match (us old ladies can duke it out!) and I ended up winning by an advantage.

I’m bringing this up not because of the win itself, but because of everything leading up to it: rewind to a little over a month ago, I also competed at Pans, and I did terribly. Like, it was pretty bad, guys. It a beautiful demonstration of jiu jitsu for my competitor (who I also think is a lovely human- absolutely no hard feelings towards her) where I felt I couldn’t do anything right. So understandably, I was pretty bummed about the match afterwards.

So, while it sucked, I also made a conscious choice to not give up. I made a choice, rather than to create excuses for myself that I would work to improve and compete again- with the intention of hopefully doing better than this spectacularly bad performance. And I would like to think that I accomplished that: the medal I received at NY Open to me is not a recognition of winning per se, but rather of progress and perseverance, even when it seemed easier at times to just say “forget it”.

It’s a hard decision sometimes to make sometimes, a commitment to keep pushing forward, and I’m talking on and off the mat. I’m sure we’ve all had those days at work where the minute you step in the door things just go wrong: from start to finish and it feels like you just can’t catch a break. It’s hard to think that anything could ever go right again, and you just kind of want to throw your hands in the air and say “the hell to all of this.”

Regardless of whether you’re on the mat, I would urge you to not give up: the only true failure is when you stop trying. So you’re rolling with higher ranked teammates and you can’t catch a break? Getting choked left and right? Keep trying, keep learning from your mistakes, and keep pushing forward- the only way you will truly stop progressing is when you refuse to try anymore.

That’s all I’ve got for now- have a great day everyone!

 

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Training While You’re Injured: We All Know You’re Tough, Just Tap

I’m always a little hesitant to roll with people when they are injured- if I do, I have a tendency to say “if something hurts too much, just let me know” knowing that there is still a chance they will not.

Listen, we all know that you’re tough and a brave little toaster, and that you want to get back to training at your normal speed, but you’re also injured- you hurt your hand/wrist/knee/entire body, and while you may be ready to put it behind you, but your body may not be at that point just yet.

We think it’s great that you’re on the mat, but don’t let your need to roll now impede your future recovery: we’ve all done it, and trust me, it sucks. Still come to class, still drill and train (within reason) but still take your body into consideration- jiu jitsu is a lifetime kind of sport, and you still have years upon years to keep training: a couple of rolling sessions where you take it a little easier won’t hurt, I promise.

That’s it for now- have a great day everyone!

 

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Happy Friday! Isle of Dogs Edition

Happy Friday everyone! It’s been a crazy week, but I was able to catch “Isle of Dogs”- the movie about a pack of dogs and a young boy who are trying to escape an island…. That’s a gross oversimplification of the plot, but it’s a cute movie that you should check out.

screen-shot-2018-02-05-at-2-45-42-pm

Have a great weekend everyone!

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BJJ and Competing: It Gets Easier, But Never Easy

We had a couple of teammates compete in DC Open this weekend (due to a family obligation I was unable to attend) and afterwards I asked a teammate how they did. They admitted to losing towards the end of the match, and said “I have never been that nervous in my life”

I wish I could tell you that competition becomes a breeze the more you do it: that after doing enough tournaments your heart rate barely raises right before you go out to compete. But then I would be lying, and I respect you all more than to lie to you.

Admittedly, it does get a little easier as time goes on: but you will never quite lose your nerves when it comes to competing. And that’s ok, because it means you care about doing well: totally understandable. It does become a little easier to face those nerves, fears, insecurities as time goes on, because essentially you’re exposing yourself to them, and still competing in spite of them.

So, the bad news is that competing will never truly become “easy”, it will however become easier the more you do it.

That’s all for now folks- have a great day!

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Article on Learning Jiu Jitsu

I do love when people talk about the brain and jiu jitsu- Breaking Grips has an article about how we learn jiu jitsu: check it out and have a great day everyone!

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Update- I’m an Idiot Who Fell For an April Fool’s Day Joke

This is why you need to pay attention to what you read, folks. Particularly around the first of April.

Someone wrote an article on April 1st about IBJJF allowing heel hooks and reaping-and not bring fully caffeinated and alert, decided to share that post. It sounded a little fishy to me, so I checked the IBJJF website- no mention.

I went back to the article and then I saw the date it was published- April 1st.

Whomp, whomp.

Moral of the story- read critically, and always check for primary sources.

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