Soy una Perdedora

Hey look, I won a medal!

Sara, Conan, & Gina

Not that one, though. The gold medal is Sara’s, she just let me wear it.
This is the medal I won…

If you’ll notice, there is no one standing on the bronze podium. Yeah, there were only two of us in my division, so I got a silver medal…for losing.

The tournament was double elimination, but apparently if there are only two people in your division, one loss and you’re done. I’m a little disappointed that I only had one match, but I’m not disappointed in my performance. This was the most relaxed and calm I have ever been while competing, which for me is a huge victory.

Besides, how could I feel bad about losing to such a nice girl as Nadia? She seemed a little nervous before we started fighting, and after she submitted me she let out an enthusiastic “yes!” Not in a superior, ego kind of way, but in a genuine release of joy kind of way. I am actually happy for her that she beat me. She was a class act.

Gina, Amy, & Sara

I think one of the reasons I felt so comfortable is because my family and my ladies were with me. Amy and Sara both cornered me, which I am very grateful for (even though I didn’t really listen to them, they tried :) Sara not only won gold in her division, but she also went on to win absolute.

Overall it was a good experience, and I know I’ll learn some lessons from it (#1 stop getting armbarred!) I consider the day to be a success…I didn’t get injured, I didn’t make a fool of myself, and I got to eat a bunch of tacos afterward. Life is good.

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14 comments on “Soy una Perdedora

  1. Out of interest, am I right in thinking that your training is all in traditional jiu jitsu, rather than BJJ? If so, how do you work out how your rank and experience in TJJ carries over to BJJ in a BJJ tournament? Or is it just a matter of "I've been training # years," like in nogi?

  2. Ok, our system is kind of weird as it's a hybrid. It's based in Kosen Judo, and we have elements of BJJ, wrestling, etc. I really have a hard time distinguishing what we do from BJJ, except that maybe we focus a little more on stand up, and we have no real BJJ lineage.As far as tournaments, we have found that our belt colors and experience are on par with BJJ, so we compete on that level. It does work out the same as the # of years for no gi. The BJJers around here recognize our system as valid to compete on that level with them. Although I sometimes wish they would let me compete as a white belt ;)

  3. Interesting. It makes sense that a different system with a grounding in judo that happens to spar a lot would be up to par, and also makes sense that people in the area would soon think "yeah, that TJJ club can come play with us."Does it ever cause problems in larger tournaments, where they might be more pernickety about that kind of thing? E.g., "sorry, you must have BJJ rank to compete," or something like that? Presuming you've been to larger tournaments outside your area, of course (which I'm asking as a non-competitor: I've done it once, way back in 2007 ;p).

  4. I personally haven't been able to travel to any larger tournaments, but a few of my teammates competed in NAGA in St. Louis a few months ago, and they will also be in NAGA Chicago coming up at the end of August. I don't think they had any problem with having their belts ranks recognized, and they all did very well in competition.

  5. NAGA I can imagine wouldn't care, given that non-BJJers often compete at the major nogi tournaments like the ADCC (is NAGA all nogi? I thought it was, but I'm not all that up on US national comps).However, I imagine the IBJJF might be pedantic about lineage for a gi tournament (or even nogi, as IIRC, they go by belt rank for that too). E.g, as indicated by this.There aren't many people entirely outside of BJJ that seem to pop up at those big IBJJF tournaments, but it would be very interesting if more of them did, like people from sambo, catch wrestling, judo, trad jiu jitsu etc. I can only think of two who have done so off the top of my head: Remco Pardoel, before he started training BJJ (he competed at the first ever Mundials in 1996), and Josh Barnett (who of course ended up winning the IBJJF No Gi Worlds in 2009), though I guess you could aruge that as an Erik Paulson student, he had some kind of BJJ lineage).

  6. NAGA did have gi as well. I imagine we probably would have some issues with big IBJJF tourneys. To tell you the truth I've never been that concerned about it for myself, because I know the odds of me competing in any of those are slim to none anyway ;) However my teammate Sara does have her sights set on competing on a larger scale, so it will be interesting to see how that works out.Another twist is that we now also have a BJJ black belt teaching at our school Gregory Lawson, so…

  7. Ooo, that brings up some fun complications! :)So, is he set to give out any BJJ rank as part of Tinguinha's organisation? Or are all belts always going to be in TJJ from Roseberry, with Lawson just in charge of teaching the BJJ class (rather than part of any kind of Tinguinha affiliation)?

  8. I don't think the powers that be have completely figured that all out yet, but if I would guess I would say we will continue our belt system as it is now, with no BJJ rank awarded.

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