David Jacobs' BJJGround When students ask for or refuse promotions

21 days ago
1/1/01
Posts: 3623

If someone asks to be promoted, what do you do?  

What if they just ask what they need to do to get promoted?  What if they ask this repeatedly?  

What if someone asks you NOT to promote them?  

21 days ago
1/1/01
Posts: 4072

Only a couple have asked me and I said no. They quit,
Many more have asked to not go up cause they felt they'd do poorly in competition at the higher belt. I said "tough luck. Cause if u don't go up you'd be sandbagging and that's dishonorable" an they accepted it.
More common than each was parents saying they wanted they kids to go up,

21 days ago
9/20/19
Posts: 5262

I’d give hot bitches blackbelts in exchange for sex. 

21 days ago
8/28/10
Posts: 13969
HillboFrateTrane -

I’d give hot bitches blackbelts in exchange for sex. 

Isn't that how you got your blue belt? By draining your coaches blue balls? 

21 days ago
5/28/02
Posts: 12108

Asking for feedback on what they need to work on is one thing. Asking about getting promoted is another. I was always unsure about a promotion when got it. But, I never questioned it either. 

21 days ago
8/28/10
Posts: 13972
baby-silverback -

Asking for feedback on what they need to work on is one thing. Asking about getting promoted is another. I was always unsure about a promotion when got it. But, I never questioned it either. 

For sure. And the times I've asked what I need to work on, a promotion was never the intent or reason for wanting to get better. I ask what I need to work on, to know what I need to do, to not suck so bad lol 

I seriously need something to focus on and direct my attention towards or I'll just keep doing the same shit I always do and not get better. So if I ask someone I admire about what they think I need to do, I'll do it because I trust they know what I'm missing. 

Funniest was I asked megaton after a long roll with him "what do I need to work on" and he said "everything you are junk" lol I said specifically give me something to focus on and he told me a certain pass that I tried and showed me what he thought I should tighten up on it and it's now my go to and one of my higher percentage movements. 

 

Edited: 20 days ago
1/1/01
Posts: 39499
Unless there is some consideration for me --perhaps an envelope involved-- I pay it little attention because they are not serious about being promoted.
21 days ago
1/1/01
Posts: 3624

Specifically, they are asking "what can I do to get my stripes?"

I just told them they need to have good attendance, good jiu jitsu, and a good attitude.  Also, I told them not to ask to be promoted.

21 days ago
9/20/19
Posts: 5270
Sometimes covid-19 lets me porrada -
HillboFrateTrane -

I’d give hot bitches blackbelts in exchange for sex. 

Isn't that how you got your blue belt? By draining your coaches blue balls? 

Yes, the gazzy approach.  

20 days ago
1/1/01
Posts: 916
I had a student who would drop hints like "well I guess I will have to keep winning white belt tournaments when I should be in blue belt" after winning one gold medal at white belt nogi local tourney. He wrestled for ten years and did a little training at an mma school. He was inconsistent, never wore a gi, and only with me for a few months - was an okay white belt. He quickly stopped coming after he realised I wouldn't give him a blue belt right away.


I always understood it that if you ask, it's a six month time penalty. I can't imagine asking your professor. That just doesn't compute for me. Must be a personality thing.
20 days ago
2/15/14
Posts: 991

Gazzy was decent at least, no? SHe has some proven competition achievements? Not world calibur, but enough to back up her belt? I'm guessing. DOnt know much about her

20 days ago
1/1/01
Posts: 3626

I once kicked a student out because he would not stop asking for a blue belt, and he was terrible.  Could not even do a guillotine choke, and rolling with him was like being in a street fight with a spaz.

Now I get these text messages from another guy who keeps asking what he needs to do to get promoted and all I can tell him is to train, improve and not ask about promotions, but he keeps asking.

20 days ago
9/20/19
Posts: 5311
wombat -

I once kicked a student out because he would not stop asking for a blue belt, and he was terrible.  Could not even do a guillotine choke, and rolling with him was like being in a street fight with a spaz.

Now I get these text messages from another guy who keeps asking what he needs to do to get promoted and all I can tell him is to train, improve and not ask about promotions, but he keeps asking.

Oh man, students having your number like that? No way. I hope it’s a burner number.  

19 days ago
12/26/02
Posts: 12197

This is one of the reasons that personally, I like having written standards / exams.  

Yes, it still relies on a level of self-awareness (because every 3 stripe white belt thinks they look as smooth as a purple belt), but it's much clearer to say "So for the promotion/exam/whatever you'll need to do live rounds of side escapes from under blue belts and escape X number of times.  Let's try that now and see how you're looking."  If they can do it, great.  If they can't do it, also great.  

I do know a blue belt who started harassing his instructor to let him take the purple exam after a year at blue. He was nowhere near ready, but he also keeps saying "Well if I fail, I fail."  I think that's a poor attitude for skill development, but there are some students who can't be swayed no matter what weird thing they think. 

I'd much rather have skill thresholds than time-in-grade. 

Edited: 18 days ago
11/11/11
Posts: 26248

Its stupid but years ago I ripped off two stripes from my blue belt given to me by gracie academy. I didnt do it in or anything. When i was asked, i just said they had probably fallen off between cause of sparing.

18 days ago
1/1/01
Posts: 3627

When I was a purple belt, I had two belts that I alternated wearing.  They did not have the same number of stripes on them because I got promoted sometimes while wearing one and sometimes while wearing the other.  Not sure if I ever had four stripes on either of them.   I think I had three on one, and two on the other, so I was a five-stripe purple belt for a while.

Edited: 18 days ago
2/15/14
Posts: 993
wombat -

When I was a purple belt, I had two belts that I alternated wearing.  They did not have the same number of stripes on them because I got promoted sometimes while wearing one and sometimes while wearing the other.  Not sure if I ever had four stripes on either of them.   I think I had three on one, and two on the other, so I was a five-stripe purple belt for a while.

that sounds kind of off. Did your instructor know you had 3 stripes already, when you were given another 2? Maybe you got 2 stripes cause they thought you were a no stripe purple, when you already had 3 and they didn't know you were a not a no stripe purple. This does not mean you are a 5 striple purple, it means you not putting on your stripes that you should have, and potentially deceiving whoever is in charge of promoting into giving you more stripes. 

 

If someone gives you stripes on your belt, you put the same number of stripes on all your belts of that color if you have more than 1

18 days ago
3/10/11
Posts: 205

It really depends.

I trained at a gym that would wait a very long time to promote people, I felt like it was unfair because the team would just smash at competitions. Blue belts subbing everyone in competitions again and again, staying at blue belt for 3+ years. Keeping dudes at white belt for 4-5 years.

I left that gym as a white belt and got promoted to blue belt within 3 months time at my next gym.

So I have some personal feelings towards when students ask to be promoted. I am biased because I have seen people held back in my eyes unfairly.

And its not a dig at that gym, like, hey you guys do you. And I think it comes from a place where they want to build really great competitors and legit ranked guys.

18 days ago
3/15/15
Posts: 13851
SportScience - 

It really depends.

I trained at a gym that would wait a very long time to promote people, I felt like it was unfair because the team would just smash at competitions. Blue belts subbing everyone in competitions again and again, staying at blue belt for 3+ years. Keeping dudes at white belt for 4-5 years.

I left that gym as a white belt and got promoted to blue belt within 3 months time at my next gym.

So I have some personal feelings towards when students ask to be promoted. I am biased because I have seen people held back in my eyes unfairly.

And its not a dig at that gym, like, hey you guys do you. And I think it comes from a place where they want to build really great competitors and legit ranked guys.


This speaks to the culture of the school and instructor, not the belt. I knew a school that did that, someone trained and competed for 5 years and was still in white belt division as never got graded/belt.
Having said that if someone refused a belt promotion and I was the instructor, I'd ask them to find another school.
18 days ago
1/1/01
Posts: 3630
mideastgrappler -
wombat -

When I was a purple belt, I had two belts that I alternated wearing.  They did not have the same number of stripes on them because I got promoted sometimes while wearing one and sometimes while wearing the other.  Not sure if I ever had four stripes on either of them.   I think I had three on one, and two on the other, so I was a five-stripe purple belt for a while.

that sounds kind of off. Did your instructor know you had 3 stripes already, when you were given another 2? Maybe you got 2 stripes cause they thought you were a no stripe purple, when you already had 3 and they didn't know you were a not a no stripe purple. This does not mean you are a 5 striple purple, it means you not putting on your stripes that you should have, and potentially deceiving whoever is in charge of promoting into giving you more stripes. 

 

If someone gives you stripes on your belt, you put the same number of stripes on all your belts of that color if you have more than 1

Lol. The point is that nobody really cared about stripes the way people do today. Neither myself or my instructor kept track as it didn’t matter to us. I got promoted to brown from being a 2 or 3 stripe purple (depending on the belt I had on) & then never got any stripes on my brown at all & got promoted to black. I never worried about the number of stripes I had.  I was a white belt for like 6 years before getting 4 stripes in one shot and then a blue 3 months later.  It was just not a big deal back then the way it is today.  And when I lived in Brazil, I never saw anyone get stripes or ask for any.  It was just about the belt colour.  And people NEVER complained about that as it would have made them look like a whiny b*tch.

18 days ago
12/26/02
Posts: 12198

I never had a single stripe, at any belt in BJJ. 

18 days ago
12/1/00
Posts: 17293

It took me a long time to get my black belt (19 years lol)- some belts I had stripes, some I didnt. I also never asked my teacher when I was going to get promoted.

Having said that, I love giving my students stripes, and promoting them when they deserve it (and not holding them back)- why? Because it makes them happy to get that recognition.

As a teacher, 99% of my students are recreational students- I'm here to have them enjoy BJJ and stick with it- not have them suck it up, be super tough, and wait forever for their promotions.

13 days ago
6/4/02
Posts: 19153

I’m a 1999 starter.  Fuck your stripes.  That is literally 0 fucks category.

it took 18 years to black belt.  If you ask you’re toast.  If your instructor holding u there for 4-5 years he’s a prick.