Jiu Jitsu “Bitchassness”

In the following video, Lloyd Irvin brought up the “disease” afflicting the general BJJ population. He calls it “bitchassness”. Basically, it’s the excuses you or your coaches are tempted to make when you lose a match in a tournament.

In the past year of competing, I’ve carefully worked at pushing that need to make excuses out. It comes from the fact that taking full responsibility for being the lesser man on this day is damn hard.

Losing should immediately initialize the same well-practiced process of self-analysis, using video of the match. There is no need to write long posts about it on your blog or Facebook.

So when people ask me how I did at the tournament, I try to limit my statement to: (1) my record on the day and (2) highlighting the fact that I learned a lot from the experience (no matter what the record is).

I try hard to avoid excuses of any kind: being screwed by the refs, going against people much heavier than me, being injured, tired, being stalled against, being screwed by some silly rule, etc.

I say “try” because it’s not easy, as Lloyd Irvin says in the above video. But if there is a culture of “no excuses” in the gym, that certainly helps in the struggle.

In my experience, just because a person preaches the value of “no excuses” doesn’t mean he follows that philosophy in his own competitive life. Again, it’s not easy to do. It’s kind of like drilling. A lot of people preach the value of drilling, but only a small fraction of those people actually drill as much as they know they should.

Anyway, let’s all make less excuses, and honestly discover the problems that lead to the loss, especially the ones that can be fixed through specific training.

0 thoughts on “Jiu Jitsu “Bitchassness”

  1. AnnMaria

    I love this guy! “No, but …” is a “No”

    A man after my own heart.

    There is NO excuse to lose. If you lost, you lost and you need to figure out what YOU can do differently next time.

    1. Lex Post author

      I think most people have a little “excuse” in them, but when I think about people on the far end of the no-excuse spectrum, you definitely come to mind 😉

  2. Alan

    I recently left the BJJ club where I’ve trained for the past 4 years, and after watching this video, I recalled quite quickly how often I was criticized and derided by my teammates for calling guys out for giving BS excuses… I think I was meant to train with Master Lloyd… damn those immigration rules and policies! 😛

    1. Lex Post author

      Lol, yeah, it’s hard to break through the culture of a gym. At the same time, I don’t think you need to. While Lloyd Irvin explains the importance of such a culture, I think it’s possible to build the no-excuse attitude without that, just within yourself. Change starts within! Lol.

  3. Lincoln

    I understand that he tries to make people more responsible for their performance, but sometimes excuses are legitimate. If you had four snoring roommates at the hotel the night before your competition that you could not have known before, well, it’s not entirely your fault for performing poorly the next day due to severe lack of sleep. At the elite level, every factor has to be in place.

    1. Lex Post author

      I think the idea is that there are always a lot of legitimate reasons for your tournament experience to be tougher than it might otherwise be. However, allowing your mind to see those reasons as the source of your losses is counter-productive to your development as a jiu jitsu player. You want to own the defeats and focus on the problems in the match that need to be fixed. And if you are honest, I think there are always problems that need to be fixed and are within your control.


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