Well, I’m a White Belt So….

My neighbor and friend started doing Jiu Jitsu with me. I was so excited when she mentioned casually that she wanted to try it and turns out, she likes it. So yay! I took the first class with her and was her training partner. It was so very nice to help a newbie who is even newer than me. I felt like I actually knew something. Not that I’m a jiu jitsu teacher or anything but I love helping people with this kind of stuff. That’s one reason I became a personal trainer 7 years ago.

Anyway, after a few starts and stops, she sent me pictures of her neck and arm, proudly displaying her bruises. I welcomed her to jiu jitsu. And then she told me she was frustrated. After 3 classes, she was frustrated. I had to laugh. I’m frustrated after the equivalent of 7 months and I don’t think this is the end of frustration. I did 4 months when I first started and have been consistently training since March now.

A couple of nights later in class, I was overtired, had overtrained for the week, and was close to tears as I realized I couldn’t remember how to do something I had drilled repeatedly that morning. I mean, how can you totally suck at something only hours after going over it again and again in a private session? But there it is. I suck and it’s frustrating. I feel like I should be better. When I told Coach Tony the next day about all this, he laughed at both me and my friend. He said that saying I was frustrated at not being better is just as ridiculous as my friend saying it. We are both beginners. A white belt, by definition, is a beginner. We’re not expected to be good. In fact, when I think about it, it’s a little liberating to be allowed to suck. When you’re at the bottom, the only way to go is up. And I think I’ll keep going.

Recommended reading from an excellent jiu jitsu blog: Why it’s cool to suck at jiu jitsu

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