WEARING THE ACADEMY GI
Some people think that wearing the academy uniform is a political ideology, a cult mentality or a hard rule established by the Academy owner.
Whilst this may be the case in some Academies and clubs, it actually isn't the case here at de Been Wodonga.
I'd like to share an experience that I had early this year.
At a tournament I approached a de Been black belt (from another Academy) and asked him what team he was representing as he was wearing a blue gi, unpatched.
Now, I made this approach as a joke. Unfortunately he didn't see it that way.
After a few expletives, he told me that he isn't into that political bullshit and that as a black belt he should be able to wear what he wants when he wants.
The unfortunate thing about this is that I wasn't able to express my thought process to sway his mindset or to inform him that it had nothing to do with politics.
Unlike Judo or other karate based martial arts, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is a unicorn within the martial arts world as it is very relaxed both on and off the mat, more so with the uniform that you train in (Gi and Nogi).
Humans inherently like to be a part of a group, a team. One aspect of being in that group or team is what we wear. Football, netball it doesn't matter, we all wear the same uniform.
Yep sure they may train in what ever they like but they play in the same clothing.
When people ask me about what I classify BJJ as (martial art or sport) I classify it as a sport, with deep martial arts roots.
Wearing our team Gi/Nogi stems back to our lineage. And for those that are not aware our lineage is like this;
If lineage means something to you and where your training comes from, well it isn't very far from the original source. That being said, the sport has developed rapidly since it's inception.
Originally our team was Gracie Barra (Carlos Gracie Jr). Pete brought the Gracie Barra team from Brazil to Australia, but after a period of time changed this and our team became de Been 100% Jiu Jitsu.
Within the martial arts, typically your team patch or head 'instructor'/inventor will be over the left hand side of your chest. This is because that is where your heart is. You wear the patch with pride.
Our Academy gi's have three patches; one on the back, chest and top of the thigh.
Note: all our academy uniforms, both gi and nogi are competition legal, where as many companies will make the gi/nogi attire without though of the IBJJF rule requirements for uniforms. As such the athlete will be required to purchase the correct attire should they compete in those rule sets.
RESPECT FOR THE TEAM, RESPECT FOR THOSE WHO HAVE WALKED BEFORE US
Wearing the team uniform demonstrates your commitment to your team.
Earlier I told you I had a brief discussion with another de Been black belt who chose not to wear the team Gi in a competition. His attitude was that he is a black belt and should be able to wear what he wants when he wants.
But I don't think he thought about his team and what those that are in his team would think. If they also wear what they want then how do you know what team they are in?
With regards to competition, I have my own policy; if you chose not to wear the Academy uniform, you have chosen not to be coached.
Your teammates work as hard as what you do at training. The amount of grit, determination and sweat on the mat helps build the team, helps build the athlete.
Wearing the Academy uniform shows your respect to those around you, shows respect to those that have built the sport around you and demonstrates respect to our founding fathers.
Whilst Peter de Been is our founding father, you should be very proud of where your Jiu Jitsu comes from.
As you read at the start of this blog, wearing the Academy uniform is more than a political ideology. You could say it is more a philosophical ideology and you should be very proud.
Our blog page is used to give you an opportunity to gain an understanding of the training that is conducted with our Academy.