Not sure what "category" to enter in during a tournament

Discussion in 'Grappling Technique' started by S.D.Force, Nov 26, 2005.

  1. S.D.Force

    S.D.Force Blue Belt

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    Just wanted some input on this topic. I'm going to do a tourny in a about two months and I don't want to be considered a sandbagger, so i want to make sure i enter the right division. I'm a little unusual so i'm not sure i fit nicely into any particular category.

    A little background.... Just turned 40y/o. But in high school 1984 went to State Championships. Still have excellent strength/mobility/mat awareness. Work out VERY regularly doing running/swimming/eliptical/plyometrics all geared towards grappling and tournament play. I have studied NO GI sub grappling extensively for about two solid years almost every day. I have probably every book and NO GI DVD instructional ever created, plus all of the taped MMA PPV's. My grappling cardio may be in question b/c i basicall do not train with anybody. So NO mat time whatsover in recent times (have done a little previously). I have excellent recall of subs and chaining of subs b/c of "visualization techniques" i use while studying instructionals. I do have a "grappling dummy" which is life like (600$) and good for working out some sub positioning, etc. Note that i probably have every sub you have ever heard of commited to visual memory and can duplicate it on the grappling dummy or a person. And am aware of all of the different types of guards and sweeps, etc. etc. etc.

    So the obvious choice would seem to be the "Executive Beginner" division, or whatever it is called for my age group.

    BUT....I would like to try and go against some of the younger guys, and cannot decide between the Mens Novice, Beginner, or Intermediate divisions.

    I guess with NO mat time basically, and my age i could legitimately maybe enter Novice, but after watching many tournaments in person and on tape, i'm inclined to feel that i could hang with the Intermediates. I would feel bad if i joined Novice or Beginner and won too easily. Of course i would probably feel even worse if i joined Intermediate and got my ass handed to me.....any suggestions?
     
  2. flyingknee16

    flyingknee16 Brown Belt

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    But you might be surprised at how much skill you have lost when you haven't been on the mat. You probably have rust (which is not a knock, since everyone gets rust with little to not mat time). I'd enter an easy division first and see how that goes and take it from there.
     
  3. 350 lbs fist

    350 lbs fist Black Belt

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    if it's your first time grappling start at the bottom.
    If it's too easy move up the next time around.
    Most are quite amazed how much stress and general nervousness take it out of you before subgrappling for the first time. Good luck.
     
  4. IMP

    IMP OBLIVION RECORDER

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    Why not just roll a bit with other people to see how good you are atm?
    Try some clubs out, say you just wanta check it out.
     
  5. Soid

    Soid Renegade of Funk

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    Try Intermediate.. Sounds about right. Men's Intermediate and then the Granny division.
     
  6. Dean Hamilton

    Dean Hamilton Amateur Fighter

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    If you can enter more than one category, then Id enter Mens Beginner and then try to do some intermediates also
     
  7. S.D.Force

    S.D.Force Blue Belt

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    thanks for the input so far.... If i was going to do only ONE division, would you say Mens Beginner or Executive Beginner???

    I've actually seen some major ass kickers in the executive divisions at times. Sometimes instructors with high BJJ belts roll in the Executive Advanced division. And since there is ONLY the Beginner and Advanced and no in between divisions in the Executive then many times guys with tons of years of experience who are not high BJJ belts will roll in the beginner Executive.
     
  8. spanklock

    spanklock Orange Belt

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    hs state wrestling champ or runner up
    2 yrs studying subs

    = enter intermediate

    leave novice for the truly new grapplers which you are not and for the sandbaggers
     
  9. Q mystic

    Q mystic Silver Belt

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    try intermediate.
     
  10. Soid

    Soid Renegade of Funk

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    Go mens Beginner or Intermediate and Executives Beginner. The advanced is for .. the advanced!!!
     
  11. GuardGame

    GuardGame Brown Belt

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    Marcelo Garcia would sub ur ass via flying armbar :)
     
  12. S.D.Force

    S.D.Force Blue Belt

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    I graduated HS 20years ago! In 1984.....but like i said, i don't look 40, and my body can still definitely outwrestle most people.....the only problem that i'm SURE i'll encounter is mat "conditioning" and gassing.

    I beleive conditioning wins most fights and grappling matches, so to take that into account i think is important. It doesn't really matter what you ability is so much as your conditioning. Your conditioning on the mat is what determines if you will be able to implement your knowledge and skills and for how long. If I end up gassing at the 3 or 4 minute mark in a 5 minute match and am down on points then i'll be in big trouble. I'm just not sure what conditioning is like for the mat. Although like i said, in general i'm in good shape.
     
  13. spanklock

    spanklock Orange Belt

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    great conditioning goes a long way in the lower ranks. and is sometimes the x factor in the higher divisions.

    also try the mens division. do mens and executive if possible.
    if youre in good shape, you may as well test yourself. i dont know how it is where you're at but where i'm from the masters divisions and up tends to offer only 0 to 1 matches per wt class. and the middle age guys i see in there...they grapple like ..well...like they are middle age guys...if you know what i mean.
     
  14. pitviper259

    pitviper259 Guest

    hmmm i had the same dilemma when i started no gi grappling. When the day of my first grappling tourney came, they let us do 2 divisions and thats what i ended up doing and that worked great. I found out that i had to stay advanced because beginner was far to easy for me and it maybe the same with you.
     
  15. S.D.Force

    S.D.Force Blue Belt

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    When did you graduate HS???
     
  16. pitviper259

    pitviper259 Guest

    in 2000 why?
     
  17. TheHighlander

    TheHighlander Green Belt

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    Start off in Executive (Advanced if they distinguish), if it is 30-40. I haven't been to a single tournament where the 30-40 bracket had many walk-overs. I compete in both the Adult and Masters/Executive whenever possible (I'm 34), but that's mostly to get as many matches as possible. If I had to choose one, it would be the one that has the most competitors, but I don't recommend that for your first tournament. Any wrestler in Novice is sandbagging.

    If you can only do one division, I'd recommend the following (in order of preference):
    1) Executive Advanced
    2) Adult Beginner
    3) Adult Intermediate
    4) Executive Beginner

    If you were in my area (San Francisco) I'd roll with you and give a much more accurate recommendation. Why no real training?
     
  18. DMcKayBJJ

    DMcKayBJJ Blue Belt

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    Enter whatever division(s) so that you can get the most matches in.
    No offense, but I'm confused. You say you work out regularly, but would probably get gassed in 3-4 minute on the mat? Also, training on a dummy is NOTHING like live randori, as you probably know. That said, I'd err on the side of advanced because as someone already said, Novice should be for the truly noobish grapplers. Test yourself, even if you get your ass handed to you.

    One of my favorite sayings: you'll ALWAYS learn something by grappling with someone better than you. If it were me, I'd rather see the tourney as more of a learning experience, than take home a cheap trophy for beating on a bunch of noobs.
     
  19. dutchmasterj3

    dutchmasterj3 Blue Belt

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    Easy division. If youre just practicing your moves on that grappling dummy then I'm pretty confident you wont be able to perfor all those moves on real people.
     

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