Had my last training session at De La Riva’s academy on Friday night, followed by a trip out to the Churrascaria Palace (Yum!) Today I have been doing some packing and getting ready for the long, 26 hour trip back to the U.S.A.
I wanted to take just a moment to reflect on my time here in Rio. I remember, when I first arrived here I was disappointed at the lack of instruction in the gym and I was having a hard time communicating with people due to my lack of Portuguese. Now, as I am throwing all my gis and rashguards in a suitcase, I realize that I am just a little bit sad to be leaving.
My initial frustration with the training “method” here in Rio seems to have disappeared and I realize now that I have found a new way to learn about Jiu-Jitsu. A way that requires me to be the one that sees connections between different techniques, that requires me to think about each of those techniques, and when they don’t work it requires that I dissect those failures in order to better understand the mechanisms behind each technique. It is actually a pretty cool feeling to know that the techniques that weren’t working for me 4 months ago are working now: not because someone showed me what I was doing wrong (instruction I could have blindly followed), but because I was forced to dig into those techniques, forced to repeat those techniques and their failures and then to analyze the techniques to discover, not so much why they were failing, but more importantly what it would take for them to succeed.
I am also a little sad to be leaving behind the friends that I have made here at De La Riva’s academy but also excited to see my family at the Ohio Combat Sports Academy, if only for a short time.
So what’s next in the “YoloBJJ Adventure”?
My tickets are booked for my flight to Bangkok the first week of January! From there I’ll be heading to Phuket for a couple weeks, then to someplace else in Southeast Asia. The plan is to spend the winter in Southeast Asia and as summer moves in to head towards Europe until winter chases me back to the US.A. again to spend the holidays with family. I also have some BIG plans coming along for the YoloBJJ brand and can’t wait to keep working on it and building it into something AMAZING!