Friday, September 17, 2010

Tips for calming before and during jiu jitsu competition...

1. Be prepared. (See lots of other great bloggers' posts on this-- look on the far right column at my blog's link list, there's one titled "Best ever tournament prep collection.") Don't waste energy stressing over stuff. Sometimes it helps to have a little index card with some things you want to make happen... "Grip fight, seoi nage, double leg, straight back, staggered stance, heavy hips."

2. Bring music. Listen to it.

3. Work the tournament (scorer, assistant to director, photographer, whatever.) It helps me take my mind off my nerves and makes me feel more at home.

4. Lay hands on your opponents (I mean in a friendly way, like shake their hands!) so that they're human and real to you. Sometimes it helps to feel their cold fingers or sweaty palms, it reminds you they're nervous too. And sometimes it establishes, subconsciously, that you are comfortable and welcoming them to your turf instead of the other way around. I know it makes me a little nervous when I see girls with this mean face on before a match, but I'm even MORE skeeredy-cat when they're all relaxed and happy and cheerful. Like, what does she know that I don't? So I like to think I can put a little of that worriedness into someone else's heart ;)

5. Know your coach's voice and be listening for it intently. Surprisingly most of the time it won't get drowned out. Occasionally I get really adrenaline-y and then my coach is like the Far Side cartoon-- Blah blah blah Georgette, blah blah Georgette-- but mostly his voice just sings right into my brain. BUT-- also listen to your opponent's corner, as often they're telling YOU what your OPPONENT is about to do. Quite handy ;)

6. HAVE FUN. No one else cares whether you win or lose, for reals, until you are bigtime like Marcelo or Roger. No one hardly even notices. Comfort yourself with the ultimate minimalism of your match-- it's a very important 5 or 6 or 7 minutes and is only important for about that much longer after the end. Then it becomes just a laundry list of the things you need to work on. :)

7 comments:

Moodi Blues said...

Thanks for this! I'm competing in my first tournament in two weeks (eep!) and I feel so not ready, and I just have no idea what to do.

DagneyTaggert said...

Go NOW to buy an IPod or MP3 Player.

A.D. McClish said...

I needed to hear this! I am super nervous about this competition coming up in October. I have been trying to also keep in mind that as long as I fight as hard as I can then there's no shame if I do lose. There are going to be some girls I can beat and then some who will beat me. That's just how it goes. But whoever beats me i going to leave the mat worn out! ;)

reginadabean said...

LOL My first tourney I decided to do it so last minute that no one from my gym was able to come down. So when I was rolling I was totally listening to her coach...it started when her coach said "Hey stop watching the scoreboard" and I realized she was being distracted by something :)

Jason (JiuJitsuMap.com) said...

I'm going to a competition in Oct. Thanks for the tips, Georgette.

Marie said...

I stumbled upon your blog upon first starting BJJ 9 months ago, and now I'm headed to my first competition in two weeks. Some really good tips here, and I'd like to add one.

I've done a bunch of team and solo sports, and I think one of things that always helps me is to visualize before events. See yourself finishing the submission or transitioning from armbar to oma plata, etc. I find it gets me in the right mindframe and reminds me that yes, I do have some idea of what I am doing. :)

Great blog, keep it up!

Georgette said...

Thank you Marie! That's so true, what good advice.

I'm glad if the blog helps at all! Good luck on your upcoming tournament and please get back with me when you come back!