Thursday, June 20, 2013

More OBMA and Some Insights Into Learning From Losing

I felt... moderately assertive and moderately exhausted. The heat/humidity drained me pretty quick and I really couldn't get mentally in gear. I was still more assertive than I would have been 2 months ago, but I felt like I was missing opportunities that I could have hit, especially with sweeps.

More importantly one of our guys just got back from a tournament where he lost, really bad, for the first time in his BJJ Career. In the past he's always done well at white and blue belt and he's gotten used to that success. This was his first tournament as a purple belt and it hit him pretty hard. I talked to him about the specific situations that cost him the match and while talking through it we isolated a root cause of his issue. He's not losing enough.

In class he's a strong, technical guy. He can impose his will on like 90% of the people we train with. This is a problem because there are places in class where he NEVER ends up. No one really forces him to turtle, so when he ends up turtled he doesn't have a good reflexive escape. No one can really stop his sweeps, so when he runs into someone that shuts him down he doesn't have a reflexive action. The problem is that there are deadends on his BJJ roadmap because he never travels those paths.

So I grabbed him for some relaxed rolling, forcing him to just let things happen and not resist too much so that he would end up in positions that he didn't normally end up in. As a result he was able to learn counters to both of the situations he was in over the weekend in just a few minutes.

This underscores an important point that people say a lot, but not everyone understands the reasoning behind. You hear it all the time, 'Put Yourself in Bad Positions!' But why? So I can practice escapes? Well, sort of. But a more accurate statement would be 'Put Yourself in Weird Positions!' Why? So you can develop a plan of action for as many possible positions as you can find.

If you never end up in a position in class, then you won't know what to do when you end up there in competition. So remember to EXPLORE your jiujitsu. Roll with the idea of finding new branches of the tree and seeing where they take you and how to move from one branch to another.

This is pretty much the exact opposite of the Assertive Jiujitsu project. This is for people who are naturally assertive with their Jiujitsu ( Like my training partner) but for that reason don't often end up in weird positions. For those of us who are naturally lazy with our jiujitsu and a little more playful we did most of this first. We explored the tree, ended up in all kinds of positions and know we KNOW all kinds of things. We just have a hard time putting them into practice because of our relaxed attitude. Two ends of the learning spectrum that both seem to collide at purple belt from what I can tell.

Now, go forth and explore! Remember, Adventure is out there!!

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