Ladies, Stop Comparing Yourself to the Guys! /// By: Brittney Martin
I’ve been training Jiu-Jitsu for about four years now. It wasn’t until recently that I realized I was looking at myself in classes all wrong. I would go to class multiple times a day and try to get in as many classes as I could to get better, but in the end I would still finish the class almost in tears. Actually, a lot of those classes did end in tears. I’d walk away thinking that I wasn’t able to do anything or that I wasn’t learning anything at all because I was getting beat up. I’d get submitted by everyone, tons of times.
It wasn’t until about my third year in, (so real recent) that I had a change in perspective. I was comparing myself, a 150 lb smaller white belt and then brand new blue belt, to a class full of majority higher level guys. I train a lot in advanced classes with maybe one or two other girls, but mostly guys. I would get so upset that these bigger, higher ranked guys were beating the crap out of me and there was nothing I could do about it. It wasn’t until one day that it just clicked. I couldn’t compare myself to a man. The strength was different. The weight was different. And the skill level was different.
My thinking changed. I went from feeling defeated and broken after a class to thinking what I could work on to get better in those situations. The comparing was killing me in my training. If there’s anything I can suggest for a girl training with mostly guys, it’s that you can’t compare yourself to them, no matter how bad you want to. Instead, you have to think how you can work your escapes better… getting out of something was a win for me. Work on your defense. If you can defend your way out of anything, the guys can’t ever beat you up. Once I got those two things down it got to where I was feeling good about my training. The higher I got inside of my blue belt, the more confident I got in being a tough training partner for the guys. That all came from me stopping the comparison between them and me. You never want to compare yourself to anyone in your Jiu-Jitsu journey, but definitely if you’re a girl don’t compare yourself to a guy that’s been training two or three times as long as you and is twice your size. In the end it will just break you down mentally and ruin training! Have fun and judge your own Jiu-Jitsu on your progress in small sections! Like your escapes or defenses. Pick one thing and work on it and you’ll see the progress!