One day as I was heading out the door to go to the beginner class at LBJJC, I told my husband I was nervous, so he asked me what I was afraid of, and I said “white belts”. At the dojo they say that white belts are the most dangerous people in the school, because they often lack awareness and control, so while I was nursing my most recent injury, I avoided going to any beginner BJJ classes, because I didn’t want to take unnecessary chances, and even though my ass gets kicked all of the time in the advanced classes, I’m less likely to get hurt by the colored belts. Then today there was no Ethridge Jiu-Jitsu class at the dojo, so I decided to go to Conan’s beginner no-gi class at Lincoln BJJ instead, and it was all good!
The focus of class was armbars and americanas from scarf hold, and as I told Conan “You’re speaking my language!”. I reminded him that they were the first submissions he ever taught me, and I also said that they were my favorite subs, but that’s not entirely accurate. My favorite submission is actually the triangle choke, but armbars from kesa gatame are my most high percentage, especially against people who are bigger and stronger than me, because I like using my legs to attack their arms, and it’s effective with or without a gi. The number of taps I’ve gotten in class with those techniques is probably bigger than all other subs put together.
I partnered with my BJJ dad Harvey for class today, and it was cool that I knew the techniques well enough to really help him understand. In fact, I did such a good job of teaching him that he submitted me with an armbar from scarf hold during positional sparring! I was also able to get an americana from scarf in record time against one of the young white belts dudes today, so it continues to be a successful technique for me.
Sometimes I still have mixed emotions about submitting white belts (who are usually the only people I can tap out!), and I actually went for a long time without even trying to submit anyone, because when I first started being able to, there were a couple of people who reacted badly, and they took it out on me personally, which made me feel like a mean person, but then I realized it was their own issue, and it didn’t really have anything to do with me. I certainly don’t hold any grudges against the many people who tap me out on a regular basis, and I don’t think they’re being mean, in fact, they’re actually doing me a favor! I can’t say that I still don’t feel a little bad for the people I submit, but now I just do it anyway.