If you don\’t play to win, why play at all?

Losing It?
November 2, 2009, 10:32 pm
Filed under: BJJ Brazilian Jiu-jitsu

A month ago, I’ve had my first experience of an overseas BJJ competition in Bangkok, Thailand.  It wasn’t exactly pure BJJ — my mom tagged along to have me as her guide in going around.  No, I didn’t mind.  It was actually nice, because for the few days that we were there before the tournament, my mind was off it and the only thing I was worrying about was finding our way with the very limited English of Thais (and the very long names of some streets and places!).  

I competed both in gi nd no gi.  On the first day (gi), I only had one match against a blue belt from Hong Kong.  I know I did fairly bad — the usual experience I have whenever I compete (more about that later).  On the second day (no gi), I did a bit better and met the same person in the finals for our weight division and the absolute.  I fought her twice, and in both matches, neither of us scored a point against each other.  However, she was more aggressive and was declared the winner.  TWICE.  

After the competition, I just couldn’t get myself to train in the same intensity as I did before.  I just felt demotivated, and I would have actually stopped totally if not for the fear that my weight would balloon to uncontrollable digits.  I just keep on getting frustrated with the way I fight in competitions.  I know I do better in training.  I am not new to competitions as I am a veteran in academic contests, but when it comes to BJJ I just lose everything the moment I touch the hand of my opponent.  Maybe because I never train my stand up and takedowns, because I don’t like doing them.  Maybe because my nerves kill my techniques.  Maybe because I am just not good enough compared to whoever my opponent is.  Sometimes I think that maybe BJJ is not really for me.  I’ve come from a lazy-ass background (shopping and walking inside the mall used to be my idea of exercise), so yeah, it was a drastic change for me when I started getting serious in BJJ.  

I know I still love doing it.  The moment I step on the mat, I forget about work pressures, personal problems and unnecessary worries.  I live in the present, and for two hours, I just sweat and enjoy myself.  After training, chatting (and sometimes dining out) with teammates is also something I look forward to.  I know I am still very much into it.  But maybe, BJJ competitions are not really for me.  I’ve thought hard about it and I just can’t see myself competing again anytime soon.  Maybe the pressure of upholding myself and bringing honor to the academy is just too much for me.  So yeah, it will just be leisurely BJJ for now.  But I will still cheer for my teammates during competitions.  Oh, and yeah, I think I’m better at taking photos of what’s happening on the mat rather than being on the mat to fight.

2 Comments so far
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Everyone loses…I think its what makes us stronger and better…you already realized there are things you don’t like to work on ..I’m sure if you improved those problems you’ll do great…

-alberto garcia team balance ne philadelphia-

Comment by alberto garcia

No no no u can’t just quit competing like that! If you felt so dissapointed losing imagine how you’d feel if you won! My teamates always say its not bout winning or losing, whether you tap that guy in 30 seconds or he taps you in 30 seconds its about enjoying yourself, that same friend of mine got destroyed in his first competition. And now he’s 17 and impossible to tap, brown belts have trouble tapping him and he finishes everyone in tournaments with flawless technique.. Keep competing, that’s where all the fun is.

Comment by man

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