“Hey, you should train with that white belt. He’s a total spaz.”
You know the white belt spaz? Heck, you might have been that guy a
year or two ago. He’s the guy who knows very little technique, yet he
desperately wants to keep from losing on the mats. So, he is probably
not going to try to perfect today’s lesson; instead he’ll try to grab
your head and squeeze it off your body. He is the guy who explodes
into submissions, through submissions, or out of submissions.
Is he dangerous? Sure. But you still should be training with him.
Why? Well, whether you are training in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) for
sport or for self-defense, BJJ is a martial art which by definition is
used for combat or protection. When you are training with other
seasoned practitioners, you expect your opponent to move in BJJ like
flow or movement, and to answer your techniques with other BJJ
techniques. So, you anticipate the movements because you assume that
your partner will use these already tested BJJ techniques.
So what benefit can you get from training with the white belt?
Unpredictability! Since the white belt doesn’t know what he should do,
you cannot anticipate his next movement. This is what you will most
likely encounter in a street self-defense scenario. And this is where
winning and losing really matters. So, of course you should embrace
the white belt as a training partner.
Everyone has their purpose on the mats; whether it’s the blue belt
that helps the purple belt perfect his transitions, or the brown belt
who reminds the purple that there is more to be learned. The white
belt is trying to win on the mats without the arsenal of techniques
that the higher belts can access. So during a sparring session, the
white belt uses the only tools at his disposal: strength and speed.
With experience, the white belt will relax, but until then, embrace
him for who he is, and what he can do to help you better your Jiu
Jitsu, whether its sport or in this case self-defense.