Sunday, October 21, 2012

Brazilian Time is NOT a Good Time!

Here is a huge enemy of your school,  Brazilian Time.  “Brazilian Time” is a humorous term used to denote  starting the martial arts class up to 15 minutes late in many cases. 

This is made famous by Brazilian BJJ Instructors (and many American Instructors) who are notoriously late in beginning their class; whether they arrive late, leaving their students sitting out on the front steps with a locked door or simply having a small talk conversation on the mats with a few students and letting time slip by.

Besides setting a bad example it also minimizes the actual technique learning process because many schools will actually do “extensive” warm-ups and drills leaving minimal time for the actual teaching of methodical technique. 

Let’s do a time breakdown to see what “Brazilian Time” is cheating us out of.

Let’s pretend that your instructor has six class times a week.  I’m sure they have more but let’s “pretend”.  Let’s also pretend that he/she starts class 15 minutes late for only 4 of those 6 classes a week.  4 classes X 15 minutes=60.  That’s 60 minutes of productive class time per week that is being wasted.   60 X 50 Weeks in a year =3000 minutes of training time not applied for the entire year.  3000 minutes divided by 60 minutes in an hour =50 hours of down time.  Lets say that each class is two hours long, that equals out to 25- 2 hour classes (50 divided by 2) that is kaput.  That is like you paying for close to a month of class and getting nothing out of it!!  How is that math working out for you?

This waste of time could be the difference between you winning a medal at a tournament and going home empty handed if not just getting better at Jiu-Jitsu.

Because this is a math/ bjj class,  let’s go a little further and cut it in half again just to be conservative and say your instructor isn’t “that bad”.  Let’s say 25- 2 hour wasted classes divided by 2=12.5 two hour non -productive classes per year vaporized….wow I feel better now, don’t you (Sarcasm)?

I’m not putting myself up as the perfect example and saying that I “Always” start my class on time. I don’t. But I try.   I’m just saying that I’m very very, very  aware of the benefits of proper time management.  I will also go on to say that I never let my students show up late without giving me a call or text.  My time is valuable as well and I won’t let them insult me by continuously showing up late like it’s no big deal.  It is a big deal.  Respect goes both ways. 

I want to close by adding that ending your class late (in kids and adult class) is NOT ok both because many students and parents have families to get home to and they often have to walk up embarrassed and say, “I have to leave before class bows out.”  As an instructor I have been guilty of this felonious act many times and it’s not right and I’m pledging to do better. 

Let’s keep the Brazilians, because they rock….Let’s just get rid of Brazilian Time!

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Wednesday, October 17, 2012

The Metamoris Metamorphosis

The Gracies have once again rudely inserted themselves back into the Jiu-Jitsu conversation.  A conversation that has long been dominated by the sport aspect of Bjj that focuses on points, advantages, weight classes and time limits.   What do the Gracies go off and do to get attention? Have an invitational tournament for the cream of the Jiu-Jitsu crop in which the only way they can win is through submission to prove that you can either finish a guy or you can’t.  Right up the Gracie's Alley!
It’s no secret that I am a Gracie Jiu-Jitsu practioner.   Pedro Sauer , my instructor received his black belt directly from Rickson and Helio Gracie.  I am therefore a bit biased.  But I have always respected BJJ no matter what tribe a person came from.  I don’t care whether you are a Competition, Submission, Gi or No-Gi  practioner.  As long as you do Jiu-jitsu then that is ok with me. I just want to see your awesome moves.

The only problem is that those feelings of respect haven’t always been reciprocated back to my art of Gracie Jiu-Jitsu both nationally and unfortunately, locally in my area.  In fact, I would say that many “Sport” BJJ Clubs and organizations have such disdain for GJJ that they would prefer that Gracie Jiu-Jitsu go F off and die in a corner so that they, “the anointed ones” can take their “rightful” place in the bjj forefront and not have to be reminded about what foundation this whole sport was started from.

Well, not so fast there sparky.  This past week-end Gracie Jiu-Jitsu was back, in your face and as irritating as ever.  This time for all the haters it was downright  painful.  In the Metamoris tournament the only thing a competitor had to do was shut their mouth and go tap the other guy out.  That’s it..No counting points,  No accruing advantages…Just go get it done with a submission.   Some won, Some lost, Some made excuses…but  the coolest part was that just because one lost or had a draw the respect for participating in this groundbreaking event was overwhelmingly appreciated by all.  It also showed that Gracie Jiu-Jitsu can hang with ANY other BJJ organization regardless of what some sport BJJ experts “predicted” would be the outcome. 

 Metamoris  Metamorphosis is a term that I coined because I couldn’t pronounce Metamoris for one but to also mean that this event has made an almost paradigm shift in how BJJ is viewed.  This event will be a NEW outlet to truly prove who the best elite BJJ players in the world are.  No longer can a person necessarily be a “Champion” by an advantage point.  This will be the place to prove your championship.  You either  Tap, Get Tapped or Draw. Very simple concept. Just like when the UFC was first started.  I do think the time limit should be 30 minutes though, Just because I enjoyed it so much. =).

The last thing I want to say is that I would like to apologize to Gracie Barra for a blog I posted some months back on how I thought they were a particularly “Sport Oriented” organization.  By taking part in the Metamoris tournament I see that they are willing to go for the submission and not just the points and for that I must pay my respect.  It was much appreciated by me, the fan of BJJ. 

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