Friday, July 3, 2009

Tap or I Snap!!!!

Tapping is an important part of learning BJJ. Even the best black belts have tapped a thousand times on their journey to become the best. Tapping keeps you from getting injured, and keeps you honest, knowing that you have been cought. 

In a BJJ class scenerio, it is never the objective to intentionally injure your training partners. However, there are some people who will never tap, and will hold out hoping that you will let go. What do you do? Let go? Or snap/put them to sleep?

In my early days of teaching, I more or less kept quiet on the subject, and it seemed that my students started letting their opponents go even when the submission is tight, they never applied it. 

However, the last few years I have let it be known clearly that I believe the other opinion is correct. If your opponent does not tap, you put them to sleep/snap

This is not to say that you intentionally go out to hurt your opponent. But when you get your submission, apply it slowly, but with clear intention that you will continue to sink your submission in deeper and deeper until something snaps, or your opponent goes to sleep. 

Learning to tap has to be learnt at your own home gym. Its no use being known as the tough guy in your gym because you don't tap, and end up seriously injured when visiting other gyms. Going to sleep, or a tweaked elbow for a week or two is not a big price to pay for such an essential lesson to be learnt. 

Sam Wee is the head instructor for Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ) at the KDT Academy (, Malaysia and has been teaching BJJ since 2003.