The Chili Pepper of Martial Arts
What is life without spice?
For many of us it is dull. Oftentimes our most memorable moments are accompanied with some fire. Whether it was winning a marathon or simply finishing one it’s hardly that of tranquility and bliss. Quite the opposite in fact, which is the similarity it shares with Jiu Jitsu.
Now there will always be those who aren’t too fond of the burn that accompanies some hot and spicy barbecue wings just as there are many who are on the risk averse end of the spectrum. While it may not seem like there is risk involved in eating spicy food, those who eat it regularly enjoy playing with fire. Literally and metaphorically I suppose.
Psychologically we as humans are actually very well suited to both risk taking and being adaptive. Both are necessary survival traits. This can be seen with the wide variety of BJJ (Brazilian Jiu Jitsu) students from age three to age seventy who arrive at the academy with same trepidation. All arrive for different reasons (parents, lose weight, self defense) but they have to overcome the same fear of starting. Just like someone who is learning to like spicy food, the pain is scary but with the right amount, it’s not that bad and pretty soon you can’t live without it.
Jiu Jitsu is unique because like the chili it is unassuming yet packs quite the punch. On the outside, the Jiu Jitsu enthusiast hardly appears special. One of the best examples of this in the sport is the young talent Mikey Musumeci, who looks like (no offense at all Mikey) your typical nerd. Yet if you crossed him, you would find yourself in a world of danger (as seen here) from this young man who competes as light as 125 lbs. This comes as no surprise to those who have experience with chilies who know the smallest ones often pack the biggest punch.