Discouraged on the road


I’m trying to keep from plateauing from preparing for the NAGA event that occurred last weekend.  I’m beyond excited for the Grappler’s Quest in Columbus Ohio on May 19.  I’ve been slightly stressed between working full time, college full time, and the gym changing its schedule slightly that I wouldn’t have any time to train.  I work 9:30-7pm most of the classes are over by 7:30 and sometimes I don’t get off work until 9:30 which sucks.  I guess I’m writing this to truly express my gratitude to my other half, Brandon, the purple belt that also trains. Every night he’ll meet with me sometimes hours after the scheduled classes are over just to help me drill, or correct a mistake he noticed I’ve made in the previous week.  One of my fellow teammates posted this statement today:

I’m very forunate to have some excellent teammates.  Most notably Shannon after class will come up to me if she saw a certain detail in a video that she thought I would benefit from.

But enough of me ranting, I’d love to get some feedback about your experiences on a different topic: Travelling & Training?

  • Did you train with an affiliate gym? If so how was the hospitality? Were they genuine or did you feel like your presence wasn’t all that welcome?
  • Was the class structure different from what you were used to? Rules different? ex: Only white gis, tie your belt facing away from the teachers.
  • If you did encounter any issue how was it resolved? Ex: Was it resolved immediately, did they contact your professor, has it never been resolved.
  • Did you go back? If yes why, If no why.
  • Does your current gym have a policy as to how to treat visitors.

I am welcoming all responses especially anonymous ones. I’m collecting some info, feel free to email me responses as well if you don’t want them to be public.  I am in the midst of writing a post about travelling and training, the pros and cons, and would like to input some personal experiences of mine as well.  I’m very much on the fence.  As much as I enjoy training with new individuals, making new friends, and gaining more experience the fear of offending someone has swallowed me whole.  I used to be so excited aout the prospects and now not so much.  I don’t think anyone should have to feel like they’re walking on eggshells the entire time. Even though I’m a college student I’ve have spent time travelling when I should have been studying or have placed much needed money aside for gas.  I did all of these things because I’ve rarely had a time when the trip wasn’t worth the sacrifice but as of lately the anxiety of another travelling trip has troubled me greatly.

Unfortunately since I did not take the anonymous route I’m sure that I’ll receive a number of messages inquiring to what influenced this message altogher and there is no one event. I hope that this will instead increase awareness of how we treat each other at the gym and give others an idea of what to expect.

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Comments
4 Responses to “Discouraged on the road”
  1. Georgette says:

    Did you train with an affiliate gym? ** Most of the time no, as I wanted a different perspective on jiu jitsu. In one city, I am close personal friends with the instructor at a sister academy so I did train there when feasible.

    If so how was the hospitality? Were they genuine or did you feel like your presence wasn’t all that welcome? ** The wording of your question indicates it aims at training at affiliate gyms, where I would expect the hospitality to be the most genuine. If you meant when training at nonaffiliate gyms, I never felt the welcome to be less than sincere and genuine. I have always been accepted with warmth and graciousness, never felt like I was a “rival” or a “foreigner” or someone you wouldn’t share everything with.

    Was the class structure different from what you were used to? Rules different? ex: Only white gis, tie your belt facing away from the teachers. ** Class seems to be the same everywhere– warmup, instruction, drilling technique, sparring. Occasionally, you can tell there are differences (i.e. whether you choose sparring partners during open mat or they are chosen for you by the instructor, etc.) I always wear a white or blue gi when I travel, so gi color has not been an issue.

    If you did encounter any issue how was it resolved? Ex: Was it resolved immediately, did they contact your professor, has it never been resolved.** Closest to an “issue” was when I visited a school near Dallas, I accidentally elbowed my drilling partner in the eye– the standard kind of oops-accident that happens here and there. It was laughed off in a friendly way, with some teasing from people, so I felt like I was back at home (this is how we would handle it at my academy).

    Did you go back? If yes why, If no why. ** Sometimes yes, because work or whatever travel caused me to go back to that city. If I formed some friendships or had a particularly good time there, or if geographically speaking that gym was the logical place to train, then yes, I went back. Sometimes, when I have more freedom of movement, more time, I’ll train somewhere different to get more experience and make more friends. I’ve never, as I said, had an experience elsewhere that made me think “I won’t be coming back here again.”

    Does your current gym have a policy as to how to treat visitors. ** I wouldn’t say we have a “policy” per se, unless maybe the fact that if you regularly train with someone else in town, you’ll get charged a drop-in fee when you train with us. But the standard is we’re warm and welcoming to everyone no matter who they train with.

  2. slideyfoot says:

    Did you train with an affiliate gym? If so how was the hospitality? Were they genuine or did you feel like your presence wasn’t all that welcome?

    I’ve trained at lots of places, included affiliate gyms. So far, they’ve always been friendly, and frequently let me train for free. Although more recently when I’ve been to visit, it’s been as a journalist for Jiu Jitsu Style, which I imagine impacts how I’m treated.

    Was the class structure different from what you were used to? Rules different? ex: Only white gis, tie your belt facing away from the teachers.

    Not really, no.

    If you did encounter any issue how was it resolved? Ex: Was it resolved immediately, did they contact your professor, has it never been resolved.

    No issues so far.

    Did you go back? If yes why, If no why.

    I don’t often go back to the same place, as like Georgette, I enjoy getting a variety of perspectives. However, when I have gone back, it’s normally because I was invited or it was especially convenient.

    Does your current gym have a policy as to how to treat visitors.

    Not that I’ve heard.

  3. grapplingvet says:

    Did you ever hear back from NAGA about the last tournament?

    Did you train with an affiliate gym? If so how was the hospitality? Were they genuine or did you feel like your presence wasn’t all that welcome?
    -There were no affiliates in that town, but I did feel welcome. It was a very small class (just me and one other student, and this was his first ever gi class), so it was kind of hard to feel left out.

    Was the class structure different from what you were used to? Rules different? ex: Only white gis, tie your belt facing away from the teachers.
    -Actually, the instructor was out of town and one of his students was teaching, so it was very low-key: no new rules that I knew of, and we just did a short stretching/warm-up bit and then just rolled and had some Q and A.

    If you did encounter any issue how was it resolved? Ex: Was it resolved immediately, did they contact your professor, has it never been resolved.
    -The one “issue” I had was when I felt I was slammed by a white belt trying to get out of a triangle. Of course I got mad and freaked out for a minute, but he apologized and tried to explain and I apologized for getting mad and blowing it out of proportion and it was fine. The instructor really didn’t get involved.

    Did you go back? If yes why, If no why.
    -I haven’t yet (I got hurt at my home gym), but I would have because they were friendly, ready to roll, and eager to have a visiting student.

    Does your current gym have a policy as to how to treat visitors.
    -Not really, asides from announcing that we have visiting students, and make them feel welcome. I wish we had an unofficial “policy” that we should try to pair up with the visitors instead of letting/making them work with each other (by not seeking them out if there are more than one) so that they could actually train with different people and feel more welcome.

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