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Road to the Kyushu Open – 7 days left

June 15, 2008

Well, it’s offically one week before the Kyushu Open and I have to admit that I haven’t really given it much thought. Sure I’m training for it and keeping it in mind but I’m not really nervous or anything like that.

It’s my fourth tournament. Third tournament in Japan, first two were Judo competitions. But it’s my second jiu-jitsu tournament where I actually know what I’m doing.

Before her most recent tournament Christina Fraquelli wrote;

Roger Gracie, my instructor, told me that I should never go into any fight saying that I had to win. I should go in and say if I prepared properly and I win, that I deserved to win. If you feel you’ve done everything right, there is no reason why you should feel bad – win or lose.

Sounds like good advice. Also just before her matches she’d center herself, feel calm and reach a… for lack of a better description… a zen moment. She took her division, a clear indication of her skill and tournament preparation if I ever saw one.

I also on her blog I found this little tid-bit of information from six time world champion Saulo Ribeiro, “Having a positive attitude is everything, great training and good vibes” That about sums up the appeal of BJJ to a lot of practitioners, myself included.

I’m not expecting to win on the day. Just going there with a healthy killer outlook, cause I’m totally not going there with the plan to win on points. I’m seriously hoping to choke someone out.

My game plan is to get to the back, and hold a high and tight closed guard. The submissions I’m going for are the triangle, rear naked choke and the guillotine. Anything else that pops up is fine, but I’m focusing on those three submissions. That’s it.

My defenses and escapes are okay. They get me out of tough situations but I haven’t trained counter-attacks and plans-of-attacks from those situations enough.

I’ll be in the pluma (-61.4 kilo) and absolute divisions. There are only three skill classes – beginners, advance and expert. It’s sad that I’m neither or those so I’m in the “beginners” class. I’m not an “advance” player and definitely not an “expert”, enter those classes means getting my butt handed to me faster than I can blink. And don’t feel like I’m cheating by entering the “beginners” level. The beginners and advance levels hold the same rules and are open to practitioners from white-up-to-purple belts. I’m sure I’m not the only blue belt entering that level AND this is the land of shooto where Japanese athletes love to snap and twist legs for fun.

I’m not thinking about losing, I mean, I want to win as badly as the guy I’ll be competiting against. But if I lose, it better be to the guy that takes the whole thing. I don’t want to lose to someone who doesn’t sweep the division. And losing won’t be a bad thing. I promised myself a night of karaoke and yakiniku if I lose. So I got my bases covered.

Oh, and if I win, no karaoke or yakiniku. I think the shiny medal is reward enough.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. June 20, 2008 2:05 pm

    Good luck man. Depending on how my wife is feeling (she has been my personal taxi for the last month and maybe needs a break) we may drive up to take a look.

    I hope I can come and give you some support (and take some nice pics!)

    It’s interesting the mental gymnastics that people go through before a fight. I think you have the right idea there.

    I heard a good thing that I think I blogged about… enthusiasm, not aggression. A positive but intense attitude.

    Best of luck.


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