Twas the night before Christmas and all through the dojo...

'Twas the night before Christmas all through the dojo, two fighters were rolling, trading berimbolos. The one rolled the other, an oma in play, that only quick defense kept submission at bay. Their hands grabbing cloth and their belts were well tattered, not medals, not trophies, no, nothing else mattered. Just two guys matching wits, years of training on mats, the roll and the counter, they fought for the tap.

When all of a sudden, a clatter arose, we both just stopped, still up on our toes. A new guy appeared, his gi, white and clean, the belt 'round his waist the blackest I've seen. His muscles, they bulged, and his eyes focused in, we knew at that moment, a match would begin.

He slipped in his mouthguard, it said 'Tough Enough', I figured he meant it, his ears sure looked rough.

A clap of the hands and a fist pound to me, then the blur of his hands was all I could see.

A takedown attempt, kimora defended, he shot under my leg and I landed, up-ended. Full guard to half, he passed it with ease, I started to roll, to get to my knees.

Snagging my ankle, I landed in side, he grabbed my lapel, a choke was applied. I quickly ducked under, and moved to my right, I went for his arm but his defense was tight.

The deep half he conquered, my lockdown he beat, he dove to my left and hooked both my feet.

His flow, it was perfect, and going for broke, I finally tapped to a triangle choke.

We clapped hands again, laughing and grinning, the truth of the matter: we both still were winning.

To share life and mat time, to learn a new guard, to forget about trouble when our lives get hard.

The joy of jiu jitsu, the pride of the fight. The moves that work only on YouTube's website.

So if you are blessed to roll, train and fight, Merry Christmas my brothers - have a great night!

Christian Hipsky