I’ve removed last night’s post.

I’m still bitter. Tanner got his nose checked out: it’s a confirmed hair-line fracture on the bridge. I’ve suffered a minor sprain to the wrist and a tweaked trapezius that kept me up all of last night. We’ll both heal. Injuries are a part of the sport. This is why I train my neck.

It’s hard to not take it personally. It feels like all my past experience and hard work is belittled. I couldn’t care less what my rank is, but I feel it should be relative to those in the same club. I do care that I got outranked with the pretense of past experience. My past experience and cross-training netted two ranks, not four. Everyone has complimented me on how much my ground game has progressed since going back to BJJ. I get my recognition verbally from training partners.

Instead of being upset and feeling slighted I should probably feel happy. Last night was a night of huge accomplishments. I finally got a good yama arashi. I’ve been working for that throw for two years. Tim explained foot sweeps in a way that instantly connected. For the last five years I’ve been cheating foot sweeps and always doing them as hooks (gari vs. gake in judo). It was probably the thing that made my style most like wrestling, and being able to do both will make my style more “judo” than anything else. I’ll be focusing on foot-sweeps for stand-up for the next couple of months to work on the skill. It’ll be rough leaving sacrifice throws, arm throws, and hip throws at the door for a month or two to improve my judo instead of my wrestling.

Techniques for March: ko uchi gari, o uchi gari, o soto gari, ko soto gari, de ashi harai, okuri ashi harai, ashi guruma, o guruma, yama arashi.


2 thoughts on “

  1. Man I was going to comment on that post, too. I hope you don’t mind, I’m going to leave my comments here instead…

    I think it’s natural to sometimes feel like your sensei/teacher makes bad decisions about belts. They are human, no matter how experienced or wise they are, so sometimes they WILL make bad decisions about belts. But a lot of thought goes into promotion, I think, and sometimes people get promoted as much for the sake of inter-gym dynamics as for their own good. For example, I knew a BJJ blue belt who was just…wrecking people in competition. He wanted to stay a blue belt because he felt that he wasn’t technically ready for purple, which may have been true. But he got promoted anyway, because my teacher (rightly) felt that him being a super-freak-of-nature blue belt was bringing down morale in the gym. Yeah, in a perfect world, this wouldn’t happen, but training Judo and BJJ is as much about your training partners as it is yourself. If you don’t want to spar with this spaz, don’t spar with him. But don’t begrudge him the belt, either, and don’t compare yourself to him. At the end of the day, the great thing about being in a sport with live training is that your training SPEAKS FOR ITSELF. If you’re improving, if you’re dominating people on the mat, then it doesn’t matter what color the belt around your waist is. It’s all about perception.


    • I always welcome your comments.
      I don’t mean to question my coach’s decision. He’s been doing this for 25 years so there’s clearly something that I’m not seeing. I do think the individual in question should have gotten promoted, but not that high. There’s just a lot of politics around the reason we were given for the promotion. There’s also a lot of politics around the rank itself. It’s the rank where you get to start playing advanced instead of beginner at tournaments. It’s also the rank where I should be able to take any new student and put them with that guy and feel safe about it. It’s going to be awhile (if ever) that I’m comfortable with the fact that someone got promoted that high for the performance in a couple of tournaments. I don’t want to hold it against him. I’m clearly not going to demand his rank be stripped. I’m also not going to demand I be ranked higher. If I wanted to go that route I could just apply for a NGB ranking and have a national official assign me an appropriate rank after official examination.
      I still do feel like it is an issue, and I’d at least like to let my coach know why I’m upset and what my concerns are.

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