Quick Links for your Wednesday Morning at Work:
Women getting some press-love from the MMA media machine on Showtime
Click HERE to watch the Countdown Show to this weekend's Ben Henderson Vs Frankie Edgar Rematch
I went 6-3 for picks on the UFC on Fox 4. Omigawa, whom I chose against my better judgment, dropped a split decision to Gamburyan. Nam Pham did his usual switcheroo by winning a fight just often enough to keep his UFC job. Ulysses Gomez lived up to his nickname and blew my pick for the 125 lb bout.
Onto the Thesis:I've posted at various times on different grappling forums, Sherdog, Judoforum, et cetera.
The make-up of the forums range in seriousness depending on the moderators and the style of martial arts allegedly trained by most of the serious commenters. The internet, as always, remains the wild west of martial arts. The last bastion of those who pretend, hide behind anonymity, and say what they think rather
The internet with it's armchair experts can be like walking through Dante's Inferno with Raoul Duke as your personal guide. At any rate, the internet is a powerful medium, but one that must be challenged, plugged through, and perhaps, if someone out there seeks an answer (silver bullets are few and far between), they might just take the plunge and go check out a gym.
The first obstacle those that have started training and managed some moderate competency in that system or gym i s when you challenge the status quo, or challenge what long-time practitioners see "as the way things should be done" comes the common "who are you to question the methods?"
A valid question. But, if Helio had not taken it upon himself to teach class one day, how might Jiu-Jitsu now be different?
If Carlson or Helio had not been willing to back up their claims in competition, where would vale tudo, mixed martial arts, and Jiu-Jitsu be?
If Count Koma had not traveled the world there might not be Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu?
If a Russian man had not traveled to the Kodokan, Sambo would not exist in the capacity it does today (which later influenced Judo with the collapse of the Soviet bloc).
- The obvious answer is you, as a lowly practitioner are none of those people...but then, in their own time, neither were they. We blow them up in our minds to these myths and legends, when at the end of our day and simultaneously the start of their day, they put on their gear, showed up to train, and for a long time just did that.
But over time, they had questions. They decided to step outside of the box.
And the world is better for it.
The tie that binds the above men is they were unsatisfied with their own knowledge and mastery.
They believed in finding, trying, failing, and searching...and ultimately distilling what they saw down into an roughly organized system. And testing those techniques against unwilling opponents.
Their actions demonstrate a belief that there is no "one answer'.
Not to make this an argument of semantics, but the "one answer" is to "always look for more answers or be prepared to question what you know".
When Kano felt unsatisfied with the training he received, what did he do?
From Judoinfo.com: "Jigoro Kano ...started his training in jujitsu at the age of 17, but his instructor, Ryuji Katagiri, felt he was too young for serious training. As a result, Katagiri gave him only a few formal exercises for study and let it go at that. The determined young man was not about to be put off so easily, however, and finally wound up at the dojo of Hachinosuke Fukuda."
"The 19-year-old... soon joined another branch ...Over the next two years, Jigoro Kano ate, drank and slept jujitsu, practicing night and day at the point of exhaustion. ...Kano decided to move on, feeling he still had much to learn and wanting to study rather than teach."
Those familiar with samurai films see the clear parallel of the wandering student, in search of a master. Luck, fate, determination, and chance bring him to the home/dojo/school of someone from whom he learns. Circumstances beyond his control force him onto the next stead, the next challenge, but he continues doggedly in pursuit of this elusive truth, of more knowledge. For "more knowledge" or the state of being open to "more knowledge" is the only real truth.
"This generation gives a rebel his grave, the one after gives him a monument, and there is no exception to it."
Keep your mind open. When you think you