Nelson: A BJJ black belt 'doesn't mean anything'

by Mike Chiappetta | source:

"There was no point staying in school," he told MMA Fighting. "I just wanted to get out there and dabble. Whether I'd be the most successful fighter in the world or a successful fighter at all, I still wanted to do this, to train and teach, eventually. To study this. Maybe I would’ve studied something else, but what I was doing in school, I wasn't interested in the way I was interested in this."

His interest was only matched by his aptitude for learning. Earning a black belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu is for many a lifetime quest. Some never receive it. Others take 15-20 years. Nelson received his in four years, and from Renzo Gracie, no less.

Nelson does not trumpet this accomplishment. In fact, he downplays it. A black belt "doesn't mean anything," he says. The meaning is in the journey.

Nelson acknowledges that he doesn't feel a huge amount of joy in the immediate aftermath of a win. Most of his satisfaction comes in the gym, with progress and development. The fight? It has real consequences.

"There is a small bit of tension release because you know the situation is over," he said. "There is a different energy after the fight, but I'd say my mind is more with my opponent than myself in being happy. At least in that stage."

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Recent Comments »

Easytarget site profile image  

2/16/13 7:37 AM by Easytarget

And great work on that. But close to 15 is quite different from anywhere in the 16-20 range. Sure lots of people who cant train consistently take longer, but that is a caveat not mentioned. The article implies that it is some way normal to take 15-20 years and juxtaposes it with a four year time which is insanely fast. There was a thread on the Atama BJJ forum asking black belts how long it took them etc. The average was about ten iirc.

mrjedens site profile image  

2/15/13 2:32 PM by mrjedens

Just wanted to post about the thread title cause enough ppl haven't beaten it into the ground yet.

Shoebert site profile image  

2/15/13 1:58 PM by Shoebert

Thread title is like saying Henderson doesn't care how good someone is on their feet. Or Silva is going to try and get the W no matter what it takes. Would be nice to see which Nelson, things will only get more confusing with the ever expanding talent pool in the UFC.

Cann site profile image  

2/15/13 1:43 PM by Cann

Something about this kid (Gunnar) reminds me of Fedor, little things he says or does in the cage. Can't wait to see his next fight.

big_roy_fan site profile image  

2/15/13 12:22 PM by big_roy_fan

wait so this is about gunnar? wtf i thought this was about roy...epic fail

ausgepicht site profile image  

2/15/13 12:18 PM by ausgepicht

"Unpossible. This thread is disrespectful to BJ. How dare Roy get his black belt in 4 years. So insulting to the pound for pound, undefeated and greatest fighter and 2nd coming of Jesus. Where are the mods? This is bullshit."-Stupid fucking twat BJ fanboys

patsully98 site profile image  

2/15/13 12:16 PM by patsully98

The quote in the title was taken out of context because the title implies that he doesn't give a shit about being a black belt. What he meant was that the belt is a piece of cloth to hold your gi closed; it's the skills and the dedication that the belt represents that's important.

Ozzimandias site profile image  

2/15/13 12:11 PM by Ozzimandias

Wow, what a shitty thread

gusto site profile image  

2/15/13 11:58 AM by gusto

I thought scuba kirik was going to do something about these idiotic headlines

BJ bashed into McDs mincemeat site profile image  

2/15/13 11:31 AM by BJ bashed into McDs mincemeat

War Gunnar!!!