Something happens when you train Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu for the first time and in my own case, when you study martial arts Perth. You fully appreciate how the underlying purpose of BJJ is not violence or to inflict harm but rather as self-defense in unexpected circumstances.
At the same time, we often have no control in a given situation, and when faced with quite an intimidating character recently, I would learn the extent of how much my decision to take up martial arts Perth has changed my life.
Unexpected altercation in a jewellery store
As with almost any altercation, the above-mentioned incident was entirely unexpected.
Having stopped at a local jewellery store mid year 2017, I was waiting for my wife as she handed over her wedding ring to the attendant for cleaning. Unaware of the six-foot figure stumbling through the store entrance, my wife was understandably shocked as an extremely scruffy man slammed his hands down on the same glass counter.
While perfectly aware of his own behavior, this intimidating figure was clearly out of his mind on “something” and proceeded to make an awful scene.
Now, at just over sixty kilo and little more than 5’5, I was unsurprised to learn that my unassuming build would soon become the target of the intruders’ attention. After all, I am even one of the smallest members in my martial arts Perth Academy and most people of this nature (aka bullies) have a tendency to direct their frustration, hurt or anger at “the smallest guy in the room”.
Having already backed into a corner, I was gently encouraging this man to walk away as he approached me with a menacing look in his eyes. Unfortunately and without warning, this giant-like figure decided to strike a blow to my chest and then another to my head.
Diffusing an unnecessary situation
However, little did this violent character know that he had chosen to assault a student of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and someone specifically trained to defend himself against a much larger opponent.
In this sense, any BJJ student will know that most people are completely inexperienced when an altercation like this is taken to the ground. For this reason, once trained in Jiu Jitsu, you can easily control an opponent of any size and assume dominance without inflicting lasting damage.
Having realized the seriousness of the situation yet not wanting to exchange punches, I’ve dropped down, done a double leg takedown and took the fight to the ground then through a scramble ….. I ended up the guard position on the bottom.
That being said, this incredibly angry man was now grabbing me by the throat and proceeded to squeeze until my wife managed to pull him off. At this point, he was lying backward on the floor with his legs open. Without a second though, I jumped straight into a fifty-fifty position, placed a triangle hold on him with my legs and taken his shoe off before applying a heel hook.
What happened next was a combination of pain and helplessness as this sizeable man groaned in agony beneath me and the security guards came in to take him away. In a matter of minutes, it was over but never had I imagined that a heel hook would enable me to diffuse what could otherwise have been a terrifying encounter.
The importance of self-defense and martial arts Perth
At the same time, this outcome was also unsurprising, for a distinct sense of awareness is central to my training throughout the year. That is to say; the learning process with BJJ requires certain mind-body awareness, while practice and knowledge of the techniques involved also result in a level of confidence. As opposed to falling victim to such an intimidating character, my live spar sessions had taught me to stay calm during a confrontation and act only when necessary.
I once read how Hélio Gracie developed Brazilian Jiu Jitsu to enable weaker or smaller practitioners to defeat larger opponents. Well, I don’t mean to compare myself to the grand master of Jiu Jitsu in any way, but thanks to such an unusual experience in a jewellery store. I can now fully appreciate both the effectiveness of these techniques and my decision to learn martial arts in Perth.