Competition and the Importance of Sportsmanship

Sorry, I know my posts haven’t been very in depth the past couple of days: I’m still trying to get everything set up in my new office.

This is something I really want to stress when it comes to being a competitor or coach at tournaments on either a local or national level: the importance of sportsmanship and sportsmanlike conduct. I know winning, and losing can be an emotional experience. I strongly encourage you to keep in mind your opponent though. Win or lose, you should thank them for taking the time out to step out on the mat and compete with you. Trust me, most of these tournaments, particularly the more local ones happen on the weekends, and we all could come up with things we either need to do, or would rather do than wait for hours and hours in some gym, waiting for a few hectic minutes of competition.

Remember as a competitor or coach, without that opponent there would be no match to begin with: and that needs to be respected. I’m sure we all have stories from all kinds of tournaments regarding poor etiquette during and after a tournament, from either the competitor themselves or (sometimes surprisingly) their coaches. We all get caught up in the moment, but snubbing your student’s opponent or even berating your own student I personally find to be a bit gauche. Also, I’ve never been a fan of the “tough love” approach if that gives you an idea of where I am coming from: in the same thought process of respecting the opponent your student faced their fears an anxieties, decided to pay the registration fee, drive hours and hours to wherever and wait to compete. Again, that effort should be respected.

So really in closing win or lose, as the competitor or coach you don’t have to be best friends with whoever is on the other side of the match, but you should at least be respectful of the other person competing.

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4 Comments

Filed under bjj

4 responses to “Competition and the Importance of Sportsmanship

  1. I agree. I’ve ripped a few of my students’ for being disrespectful.

    • Katie

      It’s particularly surprising when the poor behavior comes from the coaches. There have been a couple of times coaches have just turned their backs and walked away when I’ve gone over to shake their hand after a match.

      • Really? That’s unfortunate. I feel like that’s just disrespectful and show lack of metal control on their part. Bad example to lead as a head of a team.

      • Katie

        I agree- the behavior of the coach I feel sets an example for the rest of the team.

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