Red Light, Green Light

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2 minute read

You might have already watched Squid Game.​

It’s a new Korean series on Netflix.​

I’ve only watched its first episode, and it reminds me of some Japanese comic book series I read ages ago as a teenager (the director of Squid Game admits this series partly influenced him).​

Anyway, in this first episode, there’s a scene where 456 people play a child’s game called “Red Light, Green Light.”​

The game’s rule is pretty straightforward. You start from one side of the room, and your aim to get to the other side of the room. You can move only when it’s a “Green light” phrase. You have to stop moving when it’s a “Red light” phase otherwise, you get eliminated from the game.​

Initially, many people don’t get this rule even though it’s ridiculously simple. So they get eliminated immediately. When you have to play a game, you don’t want to lose right away like that.​

If you don’t know the rules of a game well, that can happen, though. And you can definitely say the same things about BJJ.​

I came across this post by Tom DeBlass below, and though he has a good point because, surprisingly, many people don’t really seem to care to learn about the rules for events they compete at. And they are usually the ones who tend to complain about “getting robbed by refs.”​

​Also, I tend to observe that people say “I just go for submissions” when they don’t know the rules… (of course, not everyone who says this is like that, but). Don’t be like that.​

There are all sorts of competition formats and events these days, but I assume most of you who subscribe to BJJ Reflections do gi, and I also assume that most gi competitions follow IBJJF’s rules or have rules very similar to IBJJF’s rules.​

Here’s a pretty brief explanation of the IBJJ scoring system.​

It doesn’t go into details, but if you are a beginner and want to learn a bit more about what might be called the standard scoring system of BJJ, it would be a good idea to take a look at the video linked above.​

If you want to go into details, then check out this playlist of tutorial videos by IBJJF. Each video is short enough & covers the main points fairly well, I think. It’s worth checking the video about cumulative points at least… I suppose this is a topic that often gets tricky.​

Learn the rules so you won’t lose by making a silly mistake for not understanding the rules!