The Secret Blogger: Black is the new brown 


Written by ‘Steven Johns’ *

Can someone answer me this; why can some black belts make other black belts look like white belts? 

When a guest instructor arrives at a gym for a seminar or guest spot does anyone else notice how they will most likely be able to sh1t on the house black belt with techniques that seem to be from another planet in comparison?! 

It can’t be just me who sees the local black belt act like a humble blue belt and get destroyed over and over by the guest? While the guest politely shows what seem to be Early Learning Centre™ moves to the supposed black belt, with a look of somewhat boredom on their face, as if to say “f-ck me, another clueless instructor”. 

I remember being told that getting any belt in BJJ literally took years. A black belt would take 10 years minimum and when you met a black belt or a brown or even a purple you could feel the work they put in. Nowadays its feels like if you’re willing to pay the subs, buy 10 Gi’s, turn up 5 times a week and get cauliflowered you can be a black belt in a much shorter time.

Is it that legit black belts needed to relieve some of the pressure of being the only beast around so the process after some time has become watered down? Or is it that the new generations of players are simply better at it and learn quicker and to a higher standard? Well, that doesn’t really make sense if my first statement is correct. So what the f-ck is going on?

So, back to my first question;

How can one black belt kill another with ease?

Is just that techniques differ so much? That once the basics are established, the advanced move forward in leaps-and-bounds? Or is it because some belts are, in the words of Chael Sonnen, “given out like Happy Meal™ toys”?

(I don’t know if Chael said that but he said something similar, so f-ck off you get my point). 

To my understanding, in order to get a blue belt you must compete against blue belts as a white belt and win. Sometimes more than 2 or 3 tournaments before you get the upgrade. Now it seems like people get their belt upgrade due to the situation (great opportunity for an Instagram post), not the individual’s actual progression.

I guess what I’m asking you to ask yourself is:

Is your instructor legit, or is he a black belt via an advantage win?

Who knows? Who cares? I don’t, I just like pointing out that your ‘holier than though’ Sensei might be a ‘Rex Kwon Do’ rather than a ‘Master Splinter’. 

Besides, belts are supposed to hold up your pants NOT represent your personal journey though the mystic arts! 

No belts, no points, just simulated murder 🙂

* = Steven Johns is the pen name for our guest blogger. He is a former professional fighter, who is still involved in the industry.