Thursday, December 28, 2006

A Visual Representation of One Aspect of Belt Ranking

This is one way of understanding my developmental progress thorugh the jiu-jitsu belts. Let me know what you think.

White belt: Not sure what’s going on but ready to learn. This would look something like this.


Blue belt: Getting to understand what’s going on, but definitely realizes and acknowledges that this is a really difficult sport and there is a lot of pain to the body and the ego. Big highs and big lows. There are times when I felt I was getting progressively worse week after week after week. This is the time when I felt the most beat up physically and mentally. Partially because I WAS getting beaten up and partially because as you progress, you (and your ego) eventually learn to feel it less.Visually, it would look like this.

If you can make it past this, then the time periods where you feel you’re getting progressively worse get smaller.

Purple belt: Understands the pain and learns to ignore and/or avoid it and realized that the times of frustration won’t last too long. Recovery is faster.This wave would look like this.


Brown belt: Small bumps, but a good solid foundation and direction, so no big ups and downs. More just stretched out time with small ups and downs.


Black belt: Enough of a strong foundation that it becomes experimental, incremental, and minute. It also becomes playful, hence the small curly cues.

*The circle represents a magnified view!

3 comments:

2Old said...

Reminds me of the ox herding pictures from Ch'an. Trungpa did a nice riff on them in one of his early books - can't recall which one now.

I can explicate some of the more detailed stages of white beltery, since this is so far in your past you might not recall all the nuances:

1. "I'm cool. I've figured out bjj works and the other tma were b.s." (Or for the new generation with no exposure to tma, "I'm cool, I'm going to be like Gracie in UFC 1-4" or "I'm cool, this will really supplement my standup game when I do mma."

2. "You guys are bad-asses, so I'm going to sign up here, ok?"

3. "Ok its not funny anymore. Quit sitting on me. If you don't, I'm going to...well, I'm going to hit you. As soon as you let go of my arms. Come on, this is so grade school, you're just sitting on me and pinning me down."

4. "Holy sh*t mofo, that hurts, so that's an arm bar? Why didn't you give me time to tap?"

5. "I'm not going to tap. I'm not just easy pickings."

6. "I might as well tap, this is going nowhere for either of us."

7. "I need to learn some submissions 'cuz its not right that I'm doing all the tapping."

8. "I'm going to buy a lot of books and DVD's and sneak up on my class mates with trick moves."

9. "Why do I hurt all the time?"

10. "I don't care if I'm limping around the office, as long as I can tape my toes for the mat work tonight."

11. "Maybe I need privates...but how do I take privates without letting my classmates know I'm trying to get a leg up on them?"

12. "Gee, if I take the kids to Disneyland, I could check out the orginal Gracie gym in Torrance."

13. "Why do I hurt all the time?"

Kei said...

I'm purple who feel blue and need white. :)

As long as sky is blue and cloud is white, I'm ok with purple around my waist, though.

Brown and black are too dark the color for me! ;)

Jimmy said...

i thought that "O" was just to talk about your last name and incorporating it into the black belt level. Zing! :-/