24 April 2011

The Draw of the Cage

So this is something I had written a while ago. It was published in a magazine in Miami. The guy failed to pay me, and failed to send me a copy of the magazine so in retaliation I am posting MY creative property. Since he did not buy the article, its mine to do with as I please… so enjoy!

In the middle of an MMA class, I am the least likely person you would think to see. At 5’3” and 120 lbs, I 34899_1342396041331_1274115372_30828884_2156465_ndon’t seem like much of a threat. Somehow though I am drawn to the sport, not that I am sure I will ever fight in an MMA fight, but for me just watching isn’t enough. I want to understand. Thousands of people are drawn to Mixed Martial Arts. But what is it that keeps us intrigued? From the MMA fighters themselves, the people signing up for MMA fit class, to the people that just watch, and can not get enough of the show. To the casual passerby it seems brutal, almost barbaric, but as you start to study start to learn there are techniques, game plans, fakes, strategies, something more to keep the movement going.

Humans have been in battle for their entire existence.  At first it was with animals, not just between each other to survive. After humans started to cultivate and become more sedentary,revolutionary-war-soldiers humans  battled for rights over land, food, water, their basic survival. More recent this fight has turned into war; warring for money, land, honor, not just to survive. It is in our makeup to fight. But as we evolved, and created more technology the need for fighting has become a want.

Although the spectators do not want to get completely into the ring themselves, The want for the fight is there. MMA has started to fill that gap. It is the closest thing to a real fight a real battle, while still having the technique, and being somewhat safe. The momentum of the fight can carry over into what the spectators are feeling. It’s not just he won, it is “My guy won, the person I believe in, the person that I can connect with, the person I train with has succeeded.”

To an MMA fighter it’s an ultimate test. In the ideal case, they are two equals who have worked everything they know and are MMA-Fighting-Techniques-Throws ready to test themselves. That one other guy wants to hurt him just as bad as he wants to hurt his opponent. The fight is almost a dance though. Each fighter knows their part knows their techniques, and his job is to make the other guy make a mistake to show their next step, to fall. Even two amateurs can have an outstanding fight with the most simple of techniques.

MMA is not to be romanticized though, for all of the reasons people are drawn to the fight, to train, to watch some are drawn for it’s most base nature, the blood. Some people are fascinated by the blood and possible brutality of the sport. While many appreciate the hard work that goes into it, humans look for the fight for the blood to see someone fail. Some are motivated by the money, but to just be motivated by money, can lead to a disastrous end.

Whether it is the primitive instinct to fight, the romanticized dance, the technique, emotion, or blood we are drawn to MMA. However we decide to participate the fighters deserve the respect for giving us something to look forward to. MMA continues to grow, continues to evolve. I plan on being there to see what happens next, who else is staying tuned?

17 April 2011

Great news!

Sooo I have officially hit over 20,000 views on my blog!!! Thank you to everyone who reads it's an amazing feeling to see that happen!!

I am working on the Samuel Braga interview... Jet waiting for his replies! I'm trying to find a better way to interview people too..

There was a pretty awesome visitor to our school yesterday. Jeff Monson! Apparently when he is in town he visits! It's pretty cool! I had to go to work other wise I probably would have stay and just tried to soak up whatever information I could. I am a little out of his weight class so not too sure how good of a sparring partner I would have been...

Finally I need to congratulate a bunch of people from my indianapolis team.... There was a belt promotion and a bunch of people got some well deserved promotions! Congrats to Easton for getting her blue belt! Paul got his purple belt, and Buddy got his brown belt! Finally congratulations to Mr. Eric 'big mountain' Eads on getting his black belt!!!! It is a huge accomplishment and it is definitely well deserved! I'm so excited to hear of all the promotions back in Indiana! Keep training, I love you guys!!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

15 April 2011

Losing my Aggression in Jiu Jitsu

Brazilian jiu jitsu is usually thought of as the Arte Suave, the gentle art. Aggression has it’s place in the sport, though. The aggression helps in tournaments, it helps you push through, and drive for more. I always thought I was a very aggressive grappler. I pushed the pace, went for techniques, tried whatever I could to win. Even when I was a new white belt I just kind of went for it, not in the crazy way but I kept trying to move, kept trying to do the techniques I was taught. I just went for it.

At tournaments I was even more aggressive. Looking at videos of my past competitions, I was much more aggressive as a young blue belt. I didn’t talk to anyone at the tournament that could have been in my division until after I competed. I had no fear, I wanted to win. I wanted to make everyone proud. I wanted to live up to my expectations. My theory was, what my coach taught me is good technique. I train hard, and I am getting better and better at the techniques. What I have been taught is better than what they have been taught. I am strong, confident, with better conditioning and technique. If I lose, it’s not because they are better than me but because I made the mistake. And I could tell you exactly which technique I did wrong. I remember explaining this to a teammate in Indianapolis once, he gave me a weird look and told me that’s not how I should think, I should make friends and know that I’m gonna get beat at some point by someone better than me.  I’ve made friends with some of the girls I’ve competed against, but I’ve always made sure to not talk to them before competing.

I can still tell you where I went wrong after a match. Sometimes though, I’m at a loss for what I need to do right. My technique is right, but I just can’t do it… My coach Robert says it’s because I’m not being aggressive, I’m not pushing, I’m being too passive.  Honestly that is pretty new. I can remember being aggressive. I can remember the events that made me stop being aggressive, and now that they are gone, I still have that mental block.. Now I have to push to be aggressive. I will be going and training with another team every once and a while. It’s our sister school. I’ve never been here but it is a very different school. Much more aggressive, much rougher. I’ll have to work, be aggressive and fight hard. If this is what I need to do to get my aggressive edge back I will willingly do it.

07 April 2011

Some Injuries and Exciting News!

Number one. The days are getting longer, and I got to see the sun today!! Sorry it just made me happy to see!

Anyway I banged up my left knee and am taking the next two days off of training to get the swelling to go down. As much as it stinks to sit out, i have 2 dvds to study and 2 bjj books to look over… I think I will be okay… At least I waited until after Pan Ams to get injured…

So after I got back from 199502_202877643065514_167556626597616_688997_1569574_nPan Ams, I decided to get a tattoo….  For me the tattoo has two meanings. It’s called the impossible triangle. Triangles can have a religious undertones, the Holy Trinity, a big thing in the Catholic religion. The big thing I wanted the triangle to represent though, was brazilian jiu jitsu. I refuse to get a team logo unless I get my black belt.. So I tried to look for a triangle… because a lot of jiu jitsu is about the triangle, the base, and made sure the triangle I got, wasn’t being used for a logo. So yea, it was a little painful, but it was definitely worth it.

I am going to be selling Fight Soap now, yay! for becoming a product rep! If you’re in Eastern WA I’ve got you covered! I can’t wait for my shipment, I know I have some of the bars sold.. If you are interested in getting a few email me at carluccikn@gmail.com.

Finally I am excited because not only do I have an article I’m writing about Aggression/ competitiveness in BJJ. I also have a black belt interview lined up with Samuel Braga, a 6 time World Champion. I’m excited to get the chance to interview him, and cannot wait! I’m looking for more people to do athlete spotlights on… Non black belts who have a story to tell something unique and something that stands out about them. If you have any suggestions I would definitely love to have them!