Sunday, July 22, 2012


Since I've stopped training at Shaolin's, I've noticed I'm much more prone to try out new moves and work on my weaknesses.  A friend pointed it out to me and it kind of confused me.  Shaolin is a great coach and I love the atmosphere at his school.  So why am I suddenly more calm, patient, and willing to try out new techniques?

I realized that during my time at Shaolin's, I was putting too much pressure on myself.  I wanted so bad to so well that I took every failed sweep and submission quite personally.  I got crushed A LOT at Shaolin's.  I would leave class distressed but with no plan on how to improve.  I was focusing more on the fact that I was getting crushed than the fact that I needed to  improve.  I had no process in place for fixing my mistakes, not a good one at least.  So why did my attitude change just from training elsewhere?

**I'd like to note that this is NOT a knock on Shaolin's school.  I enjoy training with his students, I like learning from Shaolin, and I'd recommend it to anyone.  The problem here lies within myself**

At Shaolin's school, there are beginner classes for white belts and advanced classes for blue belts and up.  Jason just has a mixed class, but will sometimes assign different drills for white belts.  Since I often pair up with the other girl in class who is a white belt and am more likely to be paired up with someone who is of my experience or a lower rank, I can work on similar weaknesses and am not thinking "oh my goodness, I'm going to get owned AGAIN".  Now don't get me wrong, Jason also has students that can crush me like a bug, but there is a larger gradient of experience available in any given class.  Whenever I roll with white belts, I'm more likely to work on my weaknesses, as you don't get much out of imposing your "A" game on someone who doesn't have the same experience you do.

I know my mindset shouldn't be limited to who I pair up with, so I've been working on just remaining calm during drilling and rolling.  I can't let a class format dictate how I act.  What I may consider doing is taking a couple of private lessons to really work on my weaknesses.

If I get a job in NYC, I will return to Shaolin's with a new and better attitude regarding my training.  And if I end up staying in NJ or moving anywhere else, I plan on carrying around this new attitude with me!

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