On the way to class, open mat or a tournament we all have our ‘things’ kept in a bag or the car that we bring to with. Possibly we don’t even realize that we’ve fallen into a certain routine & grab that exact same water bottle subconsciously. Wether it be out of habit, superstition, or plain good old common sense, there are certain things we just know will come in handy; or have told ourselves time and time again ” I should really buy X before Z!” For example, I finally bought a mouth guard. I’ve been telling myself for years that I’d better purchase one before my teeth get destroyed. I’ve been training and competing without any issues, but I had the most vivid dream- big tournament, I was up on points, and a runaway flying elbow knocked me senseless and some teeth took a vacation from my mouth. Needless to say the next day I was looking up mouth guards and am getting used to using it. So what do we carry around or keep stashed in the car, use on a daily basis or on tournie days? What does the jiu-jitsu practitioner find indispensable? Inquiring minds wanted to know, and here’s what we found out:
* extra gi(s) : pants rip, patches can get you DQ before you even step on the mat, and some are just more comfortable than others.
* Tape: for fingers, for toes, to cover up cuts… whatever the occasion may be.
* mini-first aid kit: nail clippers, mat burn, ripped off fingernails, cuts… You just never know!
* nogi attire: for some of us this means fancy spats and rashies.. for others maybe you aren’t into that latest Meerkatsu design. Whatever your choice is, for NoGi or to go under the GI, attire required.
* Food & Drink: I found this interesting. For some a banana,bagel and water was plenty, while for others a full cooler and 2 gallons in reserve might not be enough. I used to try to do the OMG! Tournie I have to eat! But why change your every day routine? If a banana and water is what you train with, then a banana and water is probably what you’ll compete with.
* ibuprofen/ aspirin, deodorant, face wash, hand sanitizer
* sandals/ flip-flops
* ID and money
* GoPro/ recorder/ camera
* belt- no-one said belt yet?! (I personally think that a lot of people include the belt in their uniform so when they say gi, they mean top bottoms and belt… but I included it since a teammate once almost forgot his belt prior to leaving for a tournament!)
While you may not carry as much as this guy, we all have our “must-haves!”
For the most part it was the bare essentials that were mentioned. Something to train in, wear on your feet, and change into when training was over. It was considering tournament day that had the list growing and growing. ON those team trip days we like to pack the cooler, bring the duffel packed full so that our tails are covered. But honestly, what more do you need than a gi belt and mats to train on?