June 20, 2012

Grappling with the Pin Striped Monster

I have been invited to a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu referee clinic this Sunday where I hope to garner a better understanding of the sport of BJJ, as well as get an opportunity to ask questions and peak at the BJJ world through the eyes of a ref.  We are all guilty of at one time or another being an "armchair" quarterback regailing the match with expletives that would make your sailor mom proud, proclaiming at the top of your voice that the missed call was one of the most basic things the ref should have learned at ref school!  But the reality of the matter is it is tough to be 100% focused and in the moment match, after match, after match, after match....

I wish to understand the game better, but by helping our resident black belt Denise get certified via the IBJJF I have discovered that if you wish to become a recognized / authorized black belt with the IBJJF not only do you need to sell your first born (about $400+), but you also need to be CPR certified and have participated in at least one referee clinic AS A BLACK BELT.  This got me a thinkin'....

Far fewer arguments after the IBJJF introduced
their new ref outfits!
I personally think it is a dead on balls accurate requirement both to be CPR certified (how many of your coaches are CPR / First Aid certified??), and to participate in a ref clinic.  I know, I know, I hear some of you already moaning "why should I have to if I never want to ref?"  Well the simple answer is the same I give for those who proclaim "why should I compete if I never have the desire to," because someday when you adorn your hips with that coveted black belt you now have a responsibility, and an assumed level of knowledge, to prepare your students for whatever it is they may experience.  How can you prepare a student for their first tournament when you have never stepped onto the mat?

My mother has always said "knowledge is never wasted" and that is exactly how I approach this Sunday, open to learning more.  I have little to no interest in refereeing, but I see the value in learning how to ref and in general the better I understand the rules, the better I can play!

So if you would please take a moment a click 'yes' or 'no' on my latest poll to your right ---------->
And if you have any questions regarding tournament rules or regulations please write them in the comments section of this post before Sunday AM and I will do my best to get them answered by Jeff on Sunday.


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