Over the years, I’ve noticed one problem I’ve never had is tapping. When I adopted this grappling lark, I was quickly enlightened to the fact that I’m not a natural athlete. If anything, I’m actually pretty fucking lazy. You KNOW this, it’s part of my name for fuck sake. My approach to grappling likely isn’t the best for succeeding in a general sense. I’m no Andre Galvao, and I have no desire to be. I occasionally add in a bit of additional training, whether it be strength and conditioning or a bit of cardio work but I never really stick with it. The reason for this again is because I’m lazy. I quite like sitting in the house, staring at a screen. Whether it’s an Xbox, a PC or the TV. I like films, and music and all that shit. I don’t get that deep satisfaction that other men do from sculpting their body, or getting stronger, or whatever. I love Jiu-Jitsu but strictly on my terms and I can’t commit as much time as I’d like to. Marcelo Garcia doesn’t do any of that extra shit, you know. Granted he grapples about ten hours a day, but I like to think he’s got the right idea. I’ll eventually gain my strength/conditioning/cardio etc from grappling itself. That’s my ideal.
So with that in mind, let’s go back to my initial point. I don’t have trouble tapping, and I’m more than accepting of when I have been tapped. Whether it’s from a fresh white belt, or a seasoned black belt. Everyone has their day, and this sport is not something you should be taking personally. Especially in a training environment. Last week my last roll was with one of the white belts. I’ve rolled with him a few times before, and he made it his game to stay out of my guard. My aim was exactly the opposite, get him into my guard (my guard isn’t particularly good, but I’m getting sweepy because I’ve started to try and use it more). I just didn’t have the pieces of the jigsaw necessary to do so, he kept avoiding the guard and stifling my game. We had a really fun roll, he’s fast and frenetic, and being slightly smaller he’s a stickler for technique over strength. I appreciate this. Now just before the buzzer was due to go, he took my back and sunk in a bow & arrow choke. I worked a bit to try and defend, but air was quickly running out. My brain was no longer able to process the time left on the buzzer and I realised I had to tap. There were about fifteen seconds left. I congratulated him on the tap, and moved on. There was no way in fucking hell I was holding on for another fifteen seconds. I would have been the unfortunate soul that would pass out completely, and likely shit myself. You could say, I knew when to tap.
Now, I have seen far too many people of late tallying up submissions as some sort of cock-measuring contest and I don’t get it. You don’t have to settle the score, or get even. You shouldn’t be fighting immense pain, or grimacing because someone is trying to snatch the air from you. This is a sport, and in the class it’s a game. That’s how you should be treating it. The moment you start attaching submission tallies, and the notion of trying to get one up on people; you’re ruining things for everyone. Every gym has a try-hard that wants to take a chainsaw to your spine, but hasn’t got the tools to do so, so they’re just going to start smashing at you with a wrench until something works. The amount of times I’ve resisted a hearty ‘CUNT OFF SHITGOBLIN’ is startling, but I’m about to start setting people straight. If you’re a big smelly poo on the mats, I will tell you.
Relax motherfuckers, relax.