Gracie Humaita HQ recently got two new Black Belt instructors and I could not be happier. Tyler and Jenna Bishop are an awesome couple from St Louis who made the difficult decision to move out to San Diego to train under Professor Regis. Being someone that has moved a few times as an Army brat, I can relate to what that process has to feel like. It’s hard leaving what you’ve grown accustomed to, especially all the relationships that you’ve taken time to build over the years. You can feel and hear the emotion in their going away party. It almost made me feel some sort of sad but then I realized they were moving here, so I got over it pretty quickly.
I love going to their classes. It could be Gi, NoGi, Kid’s class, knitting, crocheting, or whatever it was they were teaching that night I’d probably go to it. I’ve learned some great techniques, the vibe is always relaxed and welcoming, but their warm-ups are super weird. If you ever wake up on some random morning and are in the mood to feel like a white belt again, come find one of these two.
The first time I saw some of these I could see everyone in class looking at each other like, what in the hell is this? While I’m getting better at them, by no means have I mastered ANY of these movements so every once in a while I’ll get thrown off if I’m not paying attention to myself.
With that being said, I love watching one of the more advanced guys that’s usually so sure of themselves jump on the mat and completely look lost. It’s humbling in a good way, a healthy reminder that there’s still so much to learn for all of us.
Aside from the cool techniques and weird warm-ups, they also bring a more youthful energy. Mind you, I don’t mean that as a slight to any of the other instructors. The energy with the Bishops is just different. They run their own Jiu-Jitsu website, they’re on social media, take pictures during and after class, and aren’t worried about being silly.
Take this picture for example. Tyler was super stoked about getting this Tune Squad tank top. So much so he decided to make this weird face for his selfie that Jena then ridiculed him for when he walked away.
I’m thankful to have them around and hope to pick their brains as I go through my own journey.
Also, I may now want a Tune Squad shirt..