Thursday, 9 January 2014

On the Mat Day 448: Don't care about the outcome

Last night I really felt like I had finally earned the right to wear the purple belt. Not because I was dominating or showed mad skillz but because I felt I had chipped away some more at what lies beneath to expose the true essence of BJJ. Most of the time I over consider what will happen during sparring. Thoughts go through my head such as - that guy looks strong, this guy is competing a lot, that white belt knows judo and will probably beat the snot out of me standing, etc. This makes me tense and unaware of what exactly my opponent is doing because I am too much on the defensive. How many times does the little voice in your head say "No fucking way is that lower belt gonna tap me tonight." I'm sure we all have these thoughts. The thing is they are destructive and at the least will make you not try new techniques and in the worst case scenario will make you quit because you cannot take the mental pressure any more.

Last night I just simply didn't give a shit about the outcome of any of the rolls. And you know what, it made me so relaxed that my senses heightened so that I could feel exactly when to move and when my opponent had made a mistake, either gave me space or left a limb or neck exposed. I also became more observant and could anticipate their movements. It was quite an eye-opener for me. It also had the added benefit of reserving energy so that to some people it may look like I have a lot of stamina when in fact the opposite is true.

To really do jiu-jitsu, and to me that means do it economically, you really need to relax and stop forcing position. For example, constantly hammering an opponent with the same pass is not jiu-jitsu, you have to react to how he is moving and adjust on the fly. Forcing into him to flatten him out in side control is not jiu-jitsu. You need to flow around, take the back, not meet him head on, especially if he is bigger and stronger than you.

Flow like water

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