nothing to lose?

I was listing to another fightworks podcast this weekend ( www.thefightworkspodcast.com ) and they had a great interview with Ed Kennedy, a black belt out of Alliance in Atlanta who was talking about balancing BJJ and family, work, etc.

I highly recommend the entire episode and interview (#118) but one of the subjects that Ed touched on really grabbed my attention and got me thinking about my game.  He spoke about moving up through the belt ranks as a family man and professional and the challenge of rolling without an ego…how it is so much easier to roll when you have nothing to lose.

I used to always say that I played to the level of my competition.  I’m lucky to roll with some very talented grapplers on a regular basis and enjoy it.  I’ve found on many occasions that when I rolled with equal or lesser belts that my game didn’t carry over the way I thought it should.  The simple reality of it, however, was not my competition, but my mindset.  I was rolling as much not to lose as opposed to when I knew my guard was likely to get passed.

It’s something I’m really concentrating on right now, rolling like I have nothing to lose.

The funny thing is that I remember when I got my blue, and I was a top game dominant grappler.  One of my black belt friends pulled me aside and told me if I wanted to learn jiu jitsu I needed to start playing off my back every chance I got.  It sucked, getting passed by people I was used to beating, it was frustrating, a blow to my ego…but it changed my game.

I think know it is time to start using that mindset again, opening up, using my half guard…and rolling to learn, not rolling to when.

Thanks Ed.

Fight Harder! Fight Longer!



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November 2008
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