BJJ Poll: How Did You React When You Received Your Most Recent Jiu-Jitsu Belt Promotion?

by Caleb on June 2, 2012

You know Slideyfoot, right? The PhD candidate, BJJ blogger, teacher, and purple belt lives in England. Here at The FightWorks Podcast we consider him a longtime friend. He wrote us this week with a suggestion for our BJJ Polls:

It would be interesting to know statistically what the split was between those whose first thought upon getting promoted was “Hooray! I’m a # belt! I feel great!” and those who think “Oh crap. I’m a # belt. Can I give it back?”

Always the enquiring mind! We are curious too! Slidey’s email to us continued:

It would be even more interesting to further subdivide those results into academies that promote via a test, others who promote via competition and those who just throw a belt at you without warning.

Also good questions. We have a little data around those topics here:

We wonder… was this BJJ poll question prompted because a certain spectacled Englishman may be getting his brown belt soon? Time (and Roger Gracie) will tell!

In any case, let us know how you reacted when you were last promoted in BJJ and leave us a comment to tell us about that crazy day.

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

slideyfoot June 2, 2012 at 1:44 pm

Ha – the only bespectacled English blogger (at least, I think he’d see himself as English) due for a brown I can think of is Seymour ‘Meerkatsu’ Yang. Particularly as I’m neither English nor anywhere near a brown belt. I still don’t feel ready for purple, and I’ve had that belt over a year now. ;p

In case anyone is interested, my question was prompted by reading this post: good blog, if you haven’t read it before.

Dolph June 2, 2012 at 7:45 pm

It’s tough for me to answer this poll because When I got my purple four thoughts shot through my mind within 60 seconds of getting my current belt:

A. WTF ?!? I liked my old tattered and worn blue belt. I could hold my own as a blue belt, but I suck as a purple belt!
B. This is kind of cool. Hey, I’m a purple belt!
C. Oh, I’m a dead man. There’s a sign tied around my waist that only 200+ pound white and blue belts can read: “why don’t you try to kick my ass”
D. I’m so thankful my gym doesn’t have a gauntlet for belt promotions

Benjamin Handelman June 5, 2012 at 10:21 am

Caleb, I would think you are now in a unique position to answer this question yourself. How did you react?

Caleb June 5, 2012 at 7:39 pm

@Benjamin: You know I don’t like to talk about poll question topics until all the results are in! But, I have to say, it feels pretty good :)

Ren June 6, 2012 at 6:35 pm

All I ever wanted to be was a blue belt – be able to deal with the drunk, tough guy at the bar.
I feel like the black belt I wear is pretty heavy and comes with a lot of responsibility. The minute I put it on I could tell my training partners treated me a little differently, and most times I feel like I need to “act like a black belt.”
Maybe an analogy is when you’re peers with someone at work and you’re buds and you joke around. But then if you get a promotion above them, the chumminess subsides a bit.

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