Updated: Aug 13, 2020
Men: You want to be able to protect your family.
Women: You want to be able to protect yourself and your children.
Children: You want to be able to protect yourself.
Am I right? I think I am.
Why do we teach karate? Answer: To give everyone a chance to feel safer. However, over the years we have recognized the “gaps” in our traditional training. To best meet the needs of our students, we knew we had to fill in those gaps with jiu-jitsu, a grappling-based martial art that uses leverage to get an opponent to submit without having to use violent strikes and kicks.
Thankfully we discovered Gracie University as our guide for our BJJ journey. My interest in Jiu-jitsu is now an all-out commitment. Jiu-jitsu, just like karate has woven its principles like threads in a well-woven blanket. Will it be an easy journey? Absolutely not. I am totally prepared for the setbacks. I decided I’d view the failures as success in disguise.
Recently, I had the absolute pleasure of attending a Rener Gracie seminar in Washington, D.C. which rooted my commitment even deeper. If you have not heard of the Gracie family, they are the founders of Brazilian Jiu-jitsu and popularized it in the U.S. with the advent of the UFC. Rener has a style of teaching that is engaging on all fronts. He is funny, personal and an exceptional communicator.
I admit I am somewhat of a lagger: the opposite of an innovator. You could say I am the last one to the party. As a result, It took me awhile to embrace jiu-jitsu, mainly due to my own fears. I was scared to try BJJ for so many reasons: clinch with a sweaty person? eww- so disgusting! Be mounted by a grown man? Uh. No. Thank. You. Mess up my bun? Seriously? No.
In Gavin DeBecker’s book, The Gift of Fear, he says fear is False Evidence Appearing Real.
So how did I overcome my F.E.A.R.?
1. Small bites of jiu-jitsu at a time.
2. Small success along the way such as passing the Gracie Women Empowered course. Watch my actual Pink Belt exam here:
3. Practicing with a conscientious training partner (props to my hubs).
4. Bruce Lee laser like focus.
Put someone in an arm lock who has a hold of my ponytail? Yes, please! Tackle a person who has taken a swing at me? Hell yeah! Escape from being pinned to the floor by the wrists? No sweat!
If martial arts aren’t anywhere near your wheelhouse right now, or if BJJ isn’t your area of “expertise” do yourself a favor and give it a try. I am going to show you how much I believe in it by using all caps- IT IS FOR EVERYONE.
We all want to feel safe and knowing how to choke someone out will definitely help you with that.
Two things you must do right now: Tell me your thoughts on this article by leaving a comment and get yourself on the mat.