In the past I’ve written solely from the perspective of, and in the interest of, those who train Brazilian Jiu Jitsu; from white belts to Black belts, owners to professors, ladies and men. Something sorely overlooked is the point of view of the non-practitioner.
How remiss of us, of ME, to forget to include the very people who support us in this crazy beast land of jiu-jitsu training! I think it’s partially because I mostly socialize with fellow BJJers. All excuses aside, it’s important to get some insight from these sturdy and powerful “behind the scenes” people who help make our jujitsu journeys worth it.
Without further ado, here are some things our support systems (family, friends, significant others) who don’t train wish we knew:
1. We care about you. We constantly worry about injury and how we will be able to help if that ever happens.
2. We hate the endless laundry and stinky piles. Lol!
3.waking up in some sort of jiu-Jitsu move isn’t fun for us. Always being your test dummy, while interesting, isn’t fun for us.
4.Introduce us to your BJJ friends, team members and coach.
5. We understand that we can each do our own thing; we just want to be able to sneak a little piece of your BJJ world 🙂
6. Be supportive of the fact that we’re supportive of your goals and aspirations. Sometimes it’s hard waiting around for the (never-ending) training & tournaments to be done.
7. Tournaments are not fun for us. Not only do we not fit in, half the time we have no clue as to what’s happening.
8.We are excited when you compete. Your enthusiasm is contagious and our excitement is genuine.
9. If I didn’t train when we met, you started, or over the course of time… Please don’t expect it to happen because you desire it to, or bully us day in and day out! It’s intimidating!
10 BJJ people are tight-knit, in their own world and sometimes forget that we’re RIGHT HERE. We don’t like feeling like feeling as though we don’t belong.
11. We may have something in common other than jiu-jitsu. Maybe we like the same movies or foods or something. Please don’t discount that a wonderful friendship could build from other interests.
12.Dont look down on us because we don’t train.
13.MOST IMPORTANTLY- you’ll always be number one, a gold medalist, and have our admiration for dedicating yourself, working so hard, and just being you!
Sometimes being part of a community means opening our eyes to the people who may not be in the limelight. Those of you who have partners in life, training and in general, are lucky beyond belief. Don’t forget to lift up those who lift us up!
Andrea Harris trains Brazilian jiu-jitsu in the MA area. Currently a blue belt her focus is on competing this year. You can visit her fan page.