Wednesday, October 28, 2009


Work. Jits. Home. The triad.

Work's going pretty well, actually... busy, but happily so, with interesting cases and issues. I always get along well with my coworkers, but I am especially appreciating friendships with a few particular people who always seem to have a smile, a hug, or a wry comment for me.

Jits-- half and half. The good half is the happy, fun, creative, flowy rolls I have with friends, even the fierce fights for what feel like hours, ending up in weird-a$$ positions I couldn't recreate if I tried. I'm grasping things better, even if just intellectually seeing more connections and principles. And collaborations and friendships with other peeps on the 'net-- Elyse (check out her new website here, focused on womens' gi reviews); Leslie, Triin, Mike, Seymour, Allie, Can, Robert, Liam, Neil, Dev, Conan, Steve, Peter, and all the rest of you.

The not-so-good half is my contentment with "recreational jits" and my lack of enthusiasm for competition, and my feelings of inferiority and fear. I positively hide from the competition team class now especially since they're 2 weeks out from the next tournament and every week they go harder and harder. I wouldn't mind if I felt like I had any skills, but the longer I stay out the more disparate our skill sets become and it's a bad cycle to be in. Sometimes I think jits is like a horse-- it can smell fear, it can smell a lack of confidence, and if you approach it tentatively, like as not it will throw you.




Neilis said...

The link is busted. You need to take out the 'www'.

Georgette said...

thanks! done!

Jason said...

I know the feeling. I weigh 212 lbs and the next biggest guy in my class is 275 lbs. I always end up getting smothered by him. It really tests your desire to go to class.

Meerkatsu said...

Thanks for the mention!
Your last para struck a cord. I guess I'm the same. I feel I HAVE to compete, and indeed I know I WANT to compete, but so far it's been a rough ride and I've lost pretty much everytime, bar one.
I'm determined to continue but I have realised that I'm really not much of a 'fighter' mentally speaking.
I wonder how many love the compete because of the winning feeling, and yet maybe are not enjoying the ride so much. I say this in view of the Andre Agassi revelations from his autobiography - how he hates tennis, I mean really hates it. But it was the winning that kept him going. I wonder if some BJJ peeps have this feeling too?

leslie said...

I hear you on recreational vs. competition. We have several good players who don't like competing, and also several good guys who love to compete. I feel like I should be competing now rather than take the easier & preferred route of not competing. I think I'm afraid that if I don't compete now, then I won't ever work myself up enough to start again.

And I'm with Agassi -- I hate tennis, too. Mostly because I am really and truly terrible at it. ;)

Georgette said...

My first competition was almost a joke-- secretly in the dark recesses of my heart I hoped to win my division and be a phenom; outwardly I downplayed the whole thing. Good because I went 1-5-- though it was co-ed, I'm no Hillary Williams.

Second and third tournaments, I managed to win my divisions. Not elegantly, not efficiently, but just through guts and confidence. Then I was ROBBED of my white belt and positively PUNISHED with my blue.

I love competing IF and ONLY IF I feel I will not embarrass myself. I don't mind losing if I make it really hard for the other guy to win. I absolutely detest being walked over.

Right now I'm feeling at the bottom of the blue bracket... when I start feeling at least mediocre I'll poke my head out of my shell again. Assuming I don't do exactly what Leslie describes, which is a very real fear of mine.

leslie said...

If I didn't have to compete in front of crowds/other people, that would certainly help. :P I gave up road running several years ago because the crowds of well-meaning "You're doing great!" clapping people drove me nuts. (No, I'm not. I'm slow. I'm tired. I just got passed by grandma pushing a stroller.)

On making it hard for the other girl: one of our guys told me before my Sub Only tournament that if I couldn't win, I should at least make sure the other girl would be too tired to continue. In my second gi match, when I was so tired, that was my only goal for a while there (until she left me her arm to armbar).

On being the bottom of the bracket: Hey, I'm down there with you. After watching the blues at the last 2 tournament, I had no desire to get promoted -- they're all good! And I feel as if I'm the same. Fully anticipating losing every match at the next tournament. I'll tell myself that I'm going to experience getting trashed by blue belts. :)

Triin said...

I belong to the recreational jiu jitsu team :)

BJJ CailĂ­n said...

I always used to be nervous as hell before my competitions. But the moment I step foot on the mat and shake out, I relax. A little bit of nerves can be good for you because it makes you focus on your technique and your desire to win. If you can just get past the nerves enough to get out there that is…

I enjoy competing because my training going into a tournament becomes more focused and I improve more rapidly when I have a real tangible goal ahead.

As you compete more frequently, you will gain confidence and become used to the feeling of your nerves. You learn to recognize when nerves are good and when they are bad and how to channel them properly.

I believe that if you truly want to embrace jiu-jitsu for what it is at its heart, than competition is essential.

Yes, testing yourself can be extremely frightening. But when you test yourself and you succeed - there is no better feeling in the world.

Trying and failing should not frustrate you into quitting, but rather compel you to ramp up the diligence it takes to succeed.

Liam H Wandi said...

Awesome post. I don't feel the need to compete. I do however appreciate that others feel differently and I do go to the competition sessions cause I wanna be an extra body on the mat, both to learn by osmosis but also to give the guys someone different to work with. I bring my game to them and make them work as much as I can make them work.

When I do compete I use it as a very specific tool. My first comp I had a specific goal in mind: 1. dominate the distance and decide when "it's on" and when not. 2. get the grips first. 3. Jump to guard. 4. get to arm-wrap position 5. attempt the choke/armbar combo.

I succeeded in my plan. I didn't get the choke or the armbar but ended up sweeping the guy and maintaining mount and winning on points. Lost my second match but didn't care. I still did what I had planned on doing on him but the 2nd guy was better. no shame in that.

ha ha sorry for rambling :)

John said...

I have that fear too. The competition animals go so hard and it's intimidating. I'm working at home on endurance & increasing my power to weight ratio in the hope it'll make me feel more confident.

Ah well...