They sure take their black belts seriously

Discussion in 'Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu' started by PhotonGuy, Jun 17, 2018.

  1. PhotonGuy

    PhotonGuy Senior Master

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    In Brazilian Jiu Jitsu they really take their black belts seriously. They don't just hand them out, as a matter of fact they don't just hand out any of the belts except the white belt but particularly the black belt. If you claim to be a black belt in BJJ you had better be legit and you had better have earned it. They don't put up with people making such claims when they're not true.
     
  2. Headhunter

    Headhunter Senior Master

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    Um okay lol not really seeing the point of this post tbh
     
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  3. gpseymour

    gpseymour MT Moderator Staff Member

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    True enough. What sparked this thread?
     
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  4. frank raud

    frank raud Master Black Belt

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    OP just discovered water is wet?
     
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  5. Tames D

    Tames D RECKLESS

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    LOL
     
  6. drop bear

    drop bear Sr. Grandmaster

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  7. JR 137

    JR 137 Senior Master

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    Yeah... I guess that’s news everyone here. I though BJJ was pay and show up for 1.5-2 years and you’re handed a black belt, kinda like those kiddie McDojos.

    But in all seriousness, BJJ’s ranking system is the model which pretty much others should copy. BJJ black belt standard is pretty much what lay people think of when they think of black belts in most arts, although that public perception is getting tarnished quite a bit by the 6 and 7 year old black belts in shady schools becoming closer to the norm.

    All IMO anyway.
     
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  8. Jaeimseu

    Jaeimseu 2nd Black Belt

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    It’s far easier to maintain visibly high promotion standards when the only criteria is actual sparring application on the mat.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
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  9. JR 137

    JR 137 Senior Master

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    True enough, but I don’t think that’s the ONLY criteria. Age, disability, etc. is accounted for as far as I’ve been told. But yeah, I don’t think there’s nearly as many BJJ black belts who can’t fight their way out of a wet paper bag as there seem to be in other arts. And if there is one in BJJ, it’s probably true that they were great on the mat at one point when they earned it then something physically happened that took it away. Or they just got too old to keep up day in and day out.

    I’d comfortably lump judo in that category too. And Kyokushin and most of its bare knuckle offshoots.
     
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  10. Tony Dismukes

    Tony Dismukes MT Moderator Staff Member

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    Yeah, no one expects a 60 year old, 110-pound female black belt to necessarily always dominate a 20 year old, 220-pound, male blue belt.

    On the other side of things, a NFL linebacker might join a BJJ class and dominate most of the lower belts within the first couple of weeks. That doesn't mean he would be immediately awarded a purple belt.

    Probably the best way to explain it is to say that BJJ rank reflects the understanding of BJJ technique and the ability to apply that technique against skilled live resistance. As a BJJ black belt, I'm certainly not guaranteed to win every fight, but my knowledge isn't just theoretical. I know from experience what sort of moves I can make work on what sort of opponent. When I advise my students on how to tweak a technique to work better, that isn't based on the official standards decreed by my BJJ organization or on dogma handed down from Helio Gracie. It's based on my personal experience and observation of what works.
     
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  11. Danny T

    Danny T Senior Master

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    It’s not so much that they are serious but that the standard set for a BJJ Black Belt ranking is what it is. The fact that as a subset of the martial arts that standard is different from other subsets means little when accepting belts mean something only to the organization which sets the standard and issues the belt (the rank).
    Comparing one to another is a meaningless waste of time. Just go train, have fun, become a better practitioner, become a better person.
     
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  12. PhotonGuy

    PhotonGuy Senior Master

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    That depends. Particularly at the more advanced levels BJJ is not about out strengthening your opponent its about out smarting your opponent. And so therefore a 60 year old 110 pound female black belt could dominate the 20 year old 220 pound male blue belt.
     
  13. PhotonGuy

    PhotonGuy Senior Master

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    My point is that Im pointing it out, that's all.
     
  14. PhotonGuy

    PhotonGuy Senior Master

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    There is more to it than that. At least where I train in BJJ promotion is also based on factors such as how many classes you've attended, how long you've held your current rank, your general overall knowledge, ect.
     
  15. Tony Dismukes

    Tony Dismukes MT Moderator Staff Member

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    It can happen, but it’s not something you would necessarily expect or require. (Source - I’ve had my black belt in BJJ for a few years now.)
     
  16. hoshin1600

    hoshin1600 Senior Master

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    Being primarily a stand up fighter, my view is that BJJ is able to prove it's effectiveness by positional dominance and submission by tapout. Where stand up has a more difficult time showing effective techniques due to people's reluctance to being struck in the face and other vitals.
    For @Tony Dismukes and any other BJJ black belts here, I pose the question as stand up art how can we better judge a person's ability without damaging eachother.
     
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  17. drop bear

    drop bear Sr. Grandmaster

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    people injure each other in jits.
     
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  18. hoshin1600

    hoshin1600 Senior Master

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    i didnt say it doesnt happen. but an arm bar where the recipient can tap out is a little bit different than a punch in the face. you can hold back on the arm bar and not snap the elbow and you will both know that you had it good, you both know when you got a rear naked choke sunk in good. but with punches and kicks if you hold back people for some reason have the tendency to ignore them as if it didnt happen. other than putting the gloves on i do not see a softer method to pressure test stand up. even gloved punches to the head can cause CTE so its a tricky situation. you can roll without submissions, stand up without strikes is......well... dance.
     
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  19. Tony Dismukes

    Tony Dismukes MT Moderator Staff Member

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    I'd say that with striking arts, contact sparring is the necessary route both for developing and testing ability.

    Unfortunately, there is a tradeoff. More contact and fewer restrictions means greater development and more valid testing. It also means a greater likelihood of serious, possibly permanent injury.

    The best test would probably be something like the matches at a Dog Brothers gathering*. Full contact, minimal protective gear, weapons allowed, very few restrictions. Most of us, even serious martial artists, aren't up for going that far. The next step down might be Muay Thai or Kyokushin-style sparring or contests. From there you can go step by step down the ladder until you reach light/no contact sparring with severely restricted targets and techniques.

    *(Another path is to have a career path or lifestyle which leads to actual real-life physical confrontations on a regular basis. This has advantages and disadvantages of its own.)

    I'd posit that the best path for most people is to
    a) observe what consistently works for the people who do fight or spar full-contact with few restrictions, and build a technical base around that.
    b) spend most of their training working with light-to-moderate contact and relatively few restrictions on technique (according to their physical capacity and level of risk tolerance)
    c) at least occasionally, bump things up to hard-contact sparring or even full-contact competition to get a feel for what it's like to really give and/or receive some damage.
     
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  20. PhotonGuy

    PhotonGuy Senior Master

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    I must say that's quite an accomplishment. So where did you get it?
     

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