View Full Version : Am I In The Wrong Here? *Gym Drama*

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4/09/2012 8:44pm,
So, I'm going to try and give an unbiased view of this but I'm the involved party so it's hard to say. Help me out:

I go to a pretty solid jiu jitsu and judo club. Lots of nice guys. Our head two instructors are two guys, 29 and 25. BJJ blue belt and Judo black belt. They're super helpful. In addition to their training though, the blue belt is all about this whole "life coach" thing he has going. He wants guys to get better. He's all about it. He has us checking in and stuff when we can't make class. He's always giving speeches about time management, and self help stuff. He talks about how there's a lot of people out there who could be doing better but are just lazy, that kind of thing. Now I know he tries to mean well, but it's just...grating. I'm there to learn to grapple. I don't want life advice. I don't need any of that nonsense. Just let me work. I know he means well though.

Well, two weeks ago I go in. Dude's start cracking jokes about me. Just, really being merciless and tearing into me. Judo black belt head instructor is joining in. I ask them to cut it out a few times, no one does. We start doing this drill where we have to walk forward and swing off him and breakfall. Super standard stuff. So after I go I hear him say something about "--the line" and I turn around and go "What?" he bends down right in my face and goes "THROW THE LINE! YOU'VE DONE THIS BEFORE!" to which I kinda raise an eyebrow and throw some people. Jokes continue, from all parties including him. I get frustrated, and I leave. Now, my rational is: I felt disrespected. I'm paying for this so why should I have to put up with open mockery from everyone if I don't want to? Whatever.

I come back in and things are fine for a bit after I apologize to him for leaving. At that point, I'd felt like I'd disrespected him. Well, two weeks go by without incident but the life coaching stuff keeps going. Whatever. I get to talking to one of the other guys about a novel I'm putting together, and how I've been tweaking it a lot this year. Coach, out of nowhere and unsolicited, goes into a big speech about how I'm wasting my time. About how if I'm not constantly moving toward my goals I'm wasting time or something. Again, means well but just so out of nowhere. I didn't ask for any of that. I kind of just told him that it was my goal, I was working on it plenty and he left it alone.

Well, last thursday I go in and guys are rolling through. The coach starts talking about things he saw on facebook about how women who were raped while dress slutty shouldn't complain about it. About how they brought it on themselves and it's a stupid thing to whine about. I told him I didn't want to discuss it, as did another member of the class, and basically we all agreed to shut the topic down. Well, the other guys start cracking rape jokes. Before I know it the whole room is filled with tons of back and forth rape jokes with me getting more and more irritated and her flat out telling them to shut the hell up and one point. I turned to one of the guys making the jokes and I told him "Dude, just leave it alone." and later asked him to stop but no. So I very calmly said I was heading out, picked up my things and went home.

Well. I haven't been there since. That whole bit really disgusted me. Thin skinned, whatever. Maybe. But jeez man, I don't want to hear about rape in my jiu jitsu class. I certainly don't want to hear it when it's clearly making students uncomfortable. I got the usual speeches from him about how he didn't mean to bother me and stuff, that whole thing. Then I get told that leaving was disrespectful and all that. I ask him to give me the judo instructor's number so I can give him a call, but my phone isn't working so I don't get the chance. A while later I get messaged the the judo instructor forgives me but "he won't be okay with another walkout".

I guess that's the part I'm having trouble with. Won't be okay with another walkout? I walked out on open mockery and rape jokes. After asking for them to be stopped, but he won't be okay with another one? Why not? I pay my dues, if I don't want to be there isn't that my business? I don't know. I don't think I want to train there anymore. The atmosphere is just weird man, this whole life coach thing and weird quasi self help thing he's got going on. It's strange.

I'm looking for opinions. Argument or validation. Am I overreacting? Is stuff like this common? Is it a "just the way guys are" thing or a common practice among coaches? Is it guys who are too young thinking they know more than they do? Random dickery? What do you think bullshido?

4/09/2012 10:32pm,
Does it matter if you're right or wrong? (If you need to hear it: you're right, at least in the second instance.)

If you're not getting along in your gym, find another one. There's plenty of judo out there. No worries!

It is Fake
4/09/2012 10:49pm,
If you are offended time to go.

4/09/2012 10:50pm,
Welcome to bullshido? Not to be a smartass but this is a legitimate question; are you a female? Either way in an ideal situation if any person says a topic not related to the class makes them uncomfortable than it should be dropped.

If you are a female and you find the rape topic offensive and it continues the guys are being dicks and it may be a borderline sexual harassment issue.

What were these guys heckling you about "throw the line" what does that mean? Is it a judo thing? If you could give some background maybe we could determine if you are just a little oversensitive or these guys are really just jerks. Often guys joke and harass each other for fun, if they don't like you the usually won't joke with you. I bust my friends balls as often as possible. Are you different from the majority of the group? I've worked with some foreigners who don't get the American sarcastic sense of humor and others will throw it right back. I've also known religious people who almost seem to be looking for something that offends them. These guys may mean no harm, but they could be assholes give us some background info.

Omega Supreme
4/09/2012 11:15pm,
I think you're missing some facts that are essential to our opinion.

4/09/2012 11:31pm,
If you are offended time to go.

I agree, I think everyone will have a different level of tolerance for crude humour and enduring mockery, but ultimately these are people you are going to be training with, you are paying to be there and if your not comfortable then you should find somewhere else.

On a side note, Im typing this whilst sitting on a toilet on the top floor of a hostel in Bangkok. Strange times.

4/10/2012 12:22am,
What Omega said for the first one. I for one bust balls like crazy with my closest friends....however at the gym I try to be cognizant of my surroundings, I joke with the guys that have been there awhile and I've gotten to know but even then I try to steer clear of personal hot buttons like politics and religion. Also I recognize the fact that to a newer person I represent the culture of the gym and if I do something dickheaded and some perosn that it's their first week looks at that and goes "Oh this is how it's going to be here." I could cost my instructors a student through my behavior. I refuse to be "THAT" guy. I personally feel my behavior in the gym reflects my instructor and the culture that the higher ranked guys who've been around for awhile wish to cultivate...one of learning, teamwork and a desire to get better and include everyone that walks through the gym doors.

However if I read correctly even if your not female there was a female present for the rape comments and it made her uncomfortable. Douchbaggery, and unproffesional to say the least. The simple fact that she may have been a rape victim and took up BJJ/Judo to build confidence is a distinct possibility. And the fact that it didnt cross their minds if she voiced discomfort shows a serious lack of situational awareness IMHO.

As far as the self help schtick I'd probably have a problem with some 25 year old telling me what to do with my life and how to live it.

Caveat though this is my opinion taking everything you said at face value.

4/10/2012 12:24am,
I agree, I think everyone will have a different level of tolerance for crude humour and enduring mockery, but ultimately these are people you are going to be training with, you are paying to be there and if your not comfortable then you should find somewhere else.

On a side note, Im typing this whilst sitting on a toilet on the top floor of a hostel in Bangkok. Strange times.

Uh Oh Bangkok has him and will never let him go. Holla!!! city of Squala!!!

4/10/2012 12:38am,
Okay, how can I help provide these?

Also, I am a dude. Clearly, one with thin skin by the responses in here though. You guys are super helpful.


Throw the line is a judo thing. Everybody lines up, walks towards you, gets thrown. It was more how it was said. Screamed directly in my face, but the instructor. He was right though. We had done it SO many times. Maybe he was frustrated because it seemed super obvious to him because we've done it a ton of times and I was blanking on such a simple thing.

As for them, I am different from them in that they're a lot of super in shape dude's and ammy MMA fighters (a lot of them) and I'm an out of shape bald dude who's kind of a geek. They're very much the go out on the weekend and party types, I don't really have any stories like that because that's not me. I'm usually at home. I don't think they're malicious, I think they can snowball. One dude makes fun and then it becomes fun for everyone to make fun. Way of the world. Maybe it's just a culture clash.

P Marsh
4/10/2012 1:16am,
Your (ex)gym seems to have come under a cult of personality that transformed all of your clubmates into bros. Just thank god you got out before the poppped-collar gis and beer pong warmups.

4/10/2012 1:30am,
Alex you don't have a thin skin, I left a few gyms where I didn't feel ok myself. And there's nothing worse than a bunch of 'look I'm an MMA fighter, worship me' dipshits. I'm not talking about all guys who train it, just those who won a match and a sandwich in some bar organised event no one heard about, and think they hold god by the balls.

Demon Eyes
4/10/2012 1:47am,
Well, on one instance they seem to be trying to look out for you. I guess to become more open and sociable as them.

On the other hand they need to learn to let things go. Especially when it comes to issues of rape. That sort of idea or opinion of rape should not be brought up in class. It's crude and just down right ignorant.

As for they're making jokes about you, it was probably to get a rise out of you. Probably to get you more aggressive. Better ways to handle it. If anything you should have just said "Guys, lay the **** off! Not funny anymore." In situations like those, that type of reaction usually gets them to stop. They weren't in the right either way but just how some guys operate. I've had it happen to me in groups or being bullied as a kid, and usually that was the solution.

4/10/2012 2:45am,
Your (ex)gym seems to have come under a cult of personality that transformed all of your clubmates into bros. Just thank god you got out before the poppped-collar gis and beer pong warmups.

now I'm from the more snobbish part of the hemisphere but what the ****?
rape jokes with a woman present? - even without a woman present, by a person of authority, but anyway.
29 and 25 year old instructors giving life lessons?

**** them find another place.

4/10/2012 2:48am,
Yeah, it sounds like the instructors are kind of douches. If they're douches who offer training of a level above and beyond what else is available to you, it might be worth it to endure their douchiness. But chances are, unless you live in Bumblefuck Nowhere, you can find someone else who teaches blue belt level BJJ in a more enjoyable atmosphere.

4/10/2012 3:38am,
Oh, and make sure that you become a famous writer. That will show them to mess with g33ks. What are you writing about? Your first book? As a dedicated reader and pamphletes writer I'm all ears.

Yes, if I wanted some idiot who doesn't have a clue telling me what to do and how to live I'd be a christian or muslim or jew or whatever. If you have a feeling that you go to church instead to train something's wrong.

4/10/2012 3:44am,
Hahaha, I'd like to become a famous writer but I think I'm a ways from that. This is the first attempt at a serious, publishable novel. We'll see.

Opinions are very appreciated guys. Thanks.