This was THE enlightening week for me in Jiu-jitsu.
So far in a typical class, I do well in the initial group warm-up exercises, a
payoff from years of active living. Next, the lesson and drill would go smoothly
but I don't try to remember what is taught because it is unlikely that I can
apply the technique of the day against my opponents as they would always counter
and things just happen too fast. Besides, being the lightest and less experienced
is a huge minus. Therefore, in the follow-up sparring, my strategy is mainly
I learnt clever techniques from Henry and Rickson to survive three or four
rounds without getting caught. After several attempts on my neck, some would
compliment that I was un-chokable. I even earned the nickname 'The Great Wall of
China" and felt smug about it.
Ego got in the way when I was caught in a position that I didn't know how to get
out of, especially by a less experienced partner. I would defend to the death. I
would risk asphyxiation to pull my head out of chokes. I often survived without
learning anything from the experience.
Three things that happened last week changed my attitude. First, four of my
training partners were promoted to blue belt. Second, two friends who joined
after me submitted me. Third, Brenda asked if I would compete in a coming
tournament. All made me reflect on why I train.
From now on, I would remind myself every day:
- You have to drill,
- You have to tap, and
- You have to enjoy defeat.
Coach Jeremy once said: "If you tap, you learn much faster." but I didn't pay
attention and had to learn the hard way. But thank God I have arrived.
P.S. I re-watched the video "Jiu-jitsu VS. the World." What those guys say made
much more sense than a couple of years ago.