Saturday, September 12, 2009

Some thoughts for the competitors..

You are my adversary, but you are not my enemy.
For your resistance gives me strength.
Your will gives me courage.
You sprit ennobles me.
And though I aim to defeat you,
should I succeed, I will not humiliate you.
Instead, I will honor you.
For without you, I am a lesser man.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Organization and After-Party on Sunday Night


This year we expect to have up to 160 athletes competing, perhaps more. About 130 of these will be white and blue belts so it will be very important that we stay organzed and keep all 3 mats busy all day. We need your help to do this.

This year we will be calling all competitors in a weight/ belt bracket to gather in a specific spot and stay together. We will run each match in the bracket one after the other through the finals.

We will not be calling out on the loudspeaker for individuals to come to one mat or another. If you are not there, you will be considered to have forfeited. So please pay attention when your weight and belt bracket is called and assemble with the other guys in your bracket where we tell you to gather (and do not leave that spot).

On Sunday night at 8pm we will host an after-party at the Woodstock Bar and Grill on the private 3rd floor. The Woodstock has a 60 inch screen where we can project highlights from our competition or watch the 2009 Mundials.

The address is: Woodstock Bar & Grill,44 Soi Thonglor 13, Klongtan, Wattana, Bangkok 10110
Tel: 02-715 0202-3. It is very near the Samitivej international Hospital.

The Woodstock has great burgers, sandwiches, chicken wings and so on. They will offer us Happy Hour prices on all beer, wine and well drinks.

Please join us.

See you next week!

The Bangkok Crew

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Some thoughts as the competition draws nearer...

Fellow athletes,

I am often ask why I train BJJ. Friends, family and colleagues see the bruises and the injuries and the time required on the mat and they just dont understand. We do it for many reasons, some are common to all of us, and some are not. Some of us want to build confidence. Others humility. Some want strength, others speed or flexibility, and some of us want it all. Some want to have beautiful jiu-jitsu flowing out of us, on the mat and in our everyday lives, like some sort of magical positive energy. Some of us just need to test ourselves, old or young, to better understand who we are. You can't get closer to your own limits as when an opponent is cutting off your air or blood and you feel the world leaving your mind.

At the same time, it is all about trust. We have to trust, maybe even love one another, in order to gain what jiu-jitsu has to offer us. Anything short of this misses the mark in my opinion. And, as I have progressed however slowly in this sport, I have also realized you have to give it away to really receive what BJJ has to offer us. Teach, share, learn, watch. Paradoxical but very true.

So as you finish your training and prepare to join us here in Bangkok on the mats for two great days, consider a few things. This is about learning and growing as much as it is about winning. Sure, we all want that beautiful custom made GOLD medal around our necks, but alot of guys and women will be going home winners who dont have one of those precious medals. So keep it positive. Always.

Respect the referrees. They are human and are not perfect. They will do their best. They will make mistakes. Sometimes you will benefit from their mistakes and sometimes you may not. Next time, help us referee and you will learn a new perspective of BJJ.

Respect your opponents and their coaches. They poured hard work, sweat and blood into the mats in order to provide you with a challenge. When you shake their hand to start your match, remember and honor that. And when it is over, show respect and humility, win or lose.

See you there-