I registered for the IBJJF Chicago Open today and paused for a moment when I saw a note that said I can register for the Masters division if I was born in 1982 or before. I’m just one year away from that.
I have been casually following the winners of IBJJF events (Pans, Worlds, Europeans, Chicago, New York, etc) in the blue belt middleweight division (which is my current division). The people that place (1st, 2nd, and 3rd) without exception that I could find are all in the 18 to 21 year old range.
It’s a reflection of a lot of factors, but in my experience the difference between 18 and 28 can be boiled down to cardio and agility. Whether justified or not, I kind of feel like Clint Eastwood. These young kids might have their tricks, but I got my old school basics. They can run around all they want, but eventually I’ll wear them down with heavy fundamentals and pure guts.
By the way, I’m kidding with this post. 28 is by no means old. I will say though that I think one of the big things that gets in the way as an amateur BJJ’er like myself gets older is the responsibilities I have off the mat. I try not to let work kill me too much, but on many days (like today) it really takes away from my training.
But I draw inspiration from the warriors that never stop fighting, like Blue from Old School. You’re my boy, Blue…