This concentric circle is a common way some people display their Jiu Jitsu belts. Personally, I’ve never really cared for this particular way of showing off your belts…until recently. A friend of mine took my belts to take some photos and this is one of them that was returned to me. After studying the photo, I grew to like this setup of old tattered belts. Perhaps to a fault, but I always try to see life and the world we live in as “connected” in some way. Usually, that connection comes back to relating everything to Jiu Jitsu and the journey we undertake once we fully commit ourselves to learning Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.
What is the significance then of this arrangement of belts? At first sight, it is merely one belt wrapped around another in a never ending circle of colored cloth. The more I studied the photo, the more I saw the symbolism of the arrangement. At the center is the white belt, the first belt we are given when we start our journey. This belt makes up the middle or core of our circle and consists of many turns to complete the largest portion of the arrangement. EVERYTHING we learn at this stage is groundbreaking and a monumental step in understanding the art. Besides mere techniques, I see each circle the belt makes as a lesson learned, an obstacle defeated, a goal reached, and yes, even a setback that was experienced. Almost unnoticed by the Jiu Jitsu practitioner, the circle continues to evolve and grow. Strengthening the base of our knowledge.
As each belt is added, I noticed that it took less revolutions for the belt to complete the design. The symbolism here is that as we progress in Jiu Jitsu, the steps we make aren’t as big as in lower belts and the “momentum” of our progression seems to slow down. We don’t notice the airplane we are on traveling at high speeds, or even the earth rotating, yet we know that significant movement is present. These steps in Jiu Jitsu are equally significant in our journey and progress. Recently, I learned a simple adjustment to a “basic” choke I have been doing (inefficiently) for over 20 years. This one minor adjustment, which was simply a rotation of my hand when gripping the choke, unlocked the door for me to understand and utilize this technique more effectively.
As the circle is completed, the outer, most narrow layer is the black belt. This outer layer is what will keep the entire arrangement (and your Jiu Jitsu) together for rest of your time practicing the art. However, as each belt was added, I saw that they became more weathered and tattered with time as the circle expands. This shows the importance of the framework each previous belt provides as a base for the entire structure to remain intact. Most people see the black belt as the ultimate goal or “end” of the journey. In reality I feel this is the most frail of all the belts. It’s easy to stop progressing once you’ve reached blackbelt, but that’s not what Jiu Jitsu teaches us. Jiu Jitsu rewards the ones who keep coming back, the ones who learn from their mistakes and don’t live in their successes, and the ones who take every opportunity to learn even the smallest of details. This ability to keep learning when there seems to be no goal in sight is what allows us to always find opportunities for growth both on and off the mat. Jiu Jitsu gives us so many tools for our lives beyond self-defense. It teaches us to be comfortable with being uncomfortable and to look at every situation as a possibility to learn, grow, and keep our circle expanding.
It was a great honor to have Master Caique along with Renzo Gracie at Warrior Way this weekend and congratulations to professor Harvy and professor Angelo on your promotion. These photos express, as Renzo said, “that time is not measured by the number of years that you live but with the intensity that you live them” ... See MoreSee Less
We got a fight!!! Austin Bashi will be the featured Co-Main event in the upcoming XFC event in Grand Rapids, MI on December 10th. He is facing a very tough and experienced opponent in hopes of challenging himself and moving up the mixed martial arts ranking. Anyone thinking of attending the event PLEASE make sure to purchase tickets with Austin’s promotional code to help in support his efforts. If you are interested in sponsoring Austin for this event please contact Brandon at firstname.lastname@example.org no later than November 1st.
Keep your eyes open for upcoming announcements of more Warriors Way athletes participating in this event! ... See MoreSee Less