Meaning of Stripes in BJJ – Being accountable to my training

So I got two stripes on my white belt a month ago. I was happy that my coach thinks I’ve improved. 6 months is a short time in acquiring a new skill, but it already feels like night and day compare to when I had zero ground experience.

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Stripes on the belt to keep tab on students’ progress.

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Female groin cup for combative sports

Where can one find a good female groin cup?

A lot of female combative sports practitioners opt to go without groin protection due to (1) lack of good product availability (i.e., groin cups that don’t fit the female body well), (2) sense of security (i.e., don’t have organ hanging between our legs), and (3) maybe they just haven’t gotten seriously attacked around that area…yet. In my quest to find a good female groin cup for myself, I tried four different groin protection, two made for females, two made for males. Two that fits inside a compression short, and two that is self-sustainable (same brand).

Groin protections

Top row (made for male) left to right: RDX gel groin cup, Lo-Bloo Thai Cup 2.0. Bottom row (made for female) left to right: Shock Doctor Pelvic Protector, Lo-Bloo Aero Slim Female..

I think the Lo-Bloo Thai Cup 2.0 is my go-to if I’m sparring, and I am keeping the Lo-Bloo Aero Slim Female for Krav Maga everyday training. Both of them (1) provide good protection, (2) stay in place, and (3) don’t impede my movements. I’ll give an overview for each of these groin protector, and the reason I opt for the Lo-Bloo despite the slightly higher price tag (although if you include the cost of a compression short for the other two, the prices are actually similar).  Read More …

My goal to not fear being on the ground – Exploring Brazilian Jiu Jitsu

It is true that we cannot always avoid all dangerous situation. However, we can stack the odds more in our favor as much as possible. I take that approach to self-defense (e.g., Krav Maga, conceal carrying). The likelihood of ever needing it is low, but do I want to have the tools and ability when the need ever arises? Hell yes.

The likelihood of me getting into a ground fight is quite low since I avoid getting into any fights. However, if it happens, would I want to have been training to be comfortable on the ground? Would I want to have a toolbox ready to solve the situation? Hell yes.

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How to enjoy what I ‘should’ do

Everyday, we engage in behaviors that I ‘should’ do, but not necessarily ‘want’ to do, such as eating fruits, exercising, or reading scientific articles on some methodological debates. These “should-do” things feel like chores. Like how cleaning up the  table is “fun” for little kids but a “chore” for adults, because, well…adults “have-to” do it e.v.e.r.y.t.i.m.e. Recently, one of my obsessions, martial arts, began to feel like a chore to me. I found myself finding excuses to skip work out sessions. I dragged making the drive up to the studio.

The past weekend, I was in a cognitive neuroscience conference. And a side comment of a speaker suggested everyone to try changing their perspective about working out. See it as “going to play!“. Like how little kids view going to the playground.

I tried that the past two days when I was doing martial arts. I went with the anticipation of having FUN. Hitting some pads, running some awesome forms, and spar some! And it was refreshing! I didn’t want to leave. I wanted to do more. I looked forward to Wednesday when I can do this again.

An unexpected gain from a scientific conference 🙂

For the next few weeks, I’ll try this mental exercise before I engage in any activities. See if it works for other ‘should-dos‘, too.