Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Training with white belts ?

My fellow "higher" belts, there's nothing to be learned from white belts in specific training, right? You couldn't be more wrong !

We're lucky to have specific training every single day at Gracie Barra. Both experienced and novice will take turns starting from the top position. How does that benefit the (vastly) more experienced player ?  First of all, the novice will have the most surprising reactions. As any higher belt knows, we expect certain reactions from our training  partners, but we sure as hell don't expect to be bitten, kneed to the head, have our grips broken by small joint manipulation or our knees reaped at full speed ! Those are usually "accidents", but if we don't train for those reactions, how will we react in a "real" situation ?

Second of all, both "green" and "seasoned" novices fight for their lives. Every. Single. Round. At full speed and full strength. If we just shut them down every single time, how will we ever know how they escape, or at least defend that choke or armlock ? For my part I can usually pick one or two moves they "get" correctly, and most of the time they'll be doing it differently than me. The end result ? They get to practice their move, and I get a free tip. We both improve !

So next time you have the opportunity, pick that spazzy white belt, learn from him all you can ! They are as genuine and as wild as they get !