So, while I haven't been training much "pure" jiu jitsu this month at all, I have been dropping in on some judo classes and some kajukenbo classes, both run by old friends. It's been fun because I get to see a wholly different group of tendencies. Judo people have no problem giving up their back (well-- the ones I play with) and neither do wrestlers. However, I know judo matches get set back up on feet fairly quickly, and my kajukenbo friends seem to rely on the view that "if this were a real fight, I'd just punch you out." And everyone looks at me as the representative from Brazilian jiu jitsu and wants to test themselves (even though I'm "just" a girl.) So I get to spar a variety of opponents who don't do "the right things" and I have to find responses to them. As a result, my jiu jitsu is getting a little garbled up with more street-y stuff and less sporty stuff. I think Helio would approve. I just keep telling myself (as I wrassle around with a 19 yr old kid, 6' tall and 215 lbs, and no training at all) that if they're not submitting me, if they're not in a position to punch my lights out, then I'm winning. I might not be "beating" them-- but if they can't beat me, in the end I have succeeded.
Rener and Ryron just posted a video on a similar topic-- it's on the long side (22 min) but worth your time.
When I started jiu jitsu, I pooh-poohed the boys at my academy who seemed overly focused on "if I get in a bar fight" type situations. When asked, I emphasized that I was NOT training jiu jitsu for self defense, but was exclusively interested in the sport aspect. And, I had attended, and later taught, so many womens' self defense seminars through the Sexual Assault Crisis Center in my city, that I really felt quite confident I could handle myself in a "stranger attack" type situation even without jiu jitsu.
But when I started training with Donald Park, I began to see that I would do a great disservice to this art that I love, if I did not practice the self defense aspect of it. Sure, I don't go to "that kind of bar" often if ever. Sure, I doubted anyone would attack me, mount me and start punching away. But what if? How embarrassing if I were training jiu jitsu for years and got beaten up! or worse, got taunted by a 19 yr old kid after a judo class!
So I happily prioritize self defense. And you should too.
I will say this-- guillotines! loop chokes! arm drags! take the back! soooooo much fun against big strong 19 yr old apes ;)