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#18 Tsuyoshi has been Promoted to Black Belt

Posted on 2014/12/25

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The day has finally come. CARPE DIEM staff member Tsuyoshi Tamaki has received his black belt. I am really happy about this. And I feel very relieved. I clearly remember the day that Tsuyoshi joined my dojo. He was a child that before I realized, grew up into an adult. Recently he has been becoming something of an old guy. :-)

Tsuyoshi is one of those guys that has given his all of his younger days to BJJ. All he has is this sport. I think that’s why he has put in so much effort up until now. Being so dedicated, it was quite tough when he was down. I also kept paying attention. :-)
When Tsuyoshi competed overseas, his matches were mostly in the middle of the night but I couldn’t sleep until I knew how he went. I always say to the staff “Don’t make excuses!” And so when a spectator says “That was close.” after a match that he lost, he will announce in a mail, “I lost because I wasn’t good enough.” When I read that mail in the early hours of the morning, there have been times when both my wife and I cried. On top of that every time he comes back to the dojo straight from the airport. When I hear the sound of a suitcase coming along, I am always troubled by what kind of reception I should give him. That’s why, when he came third in the Pans last year I was so happy for him.
Tsuyoshi isn’t just a first rate competitor, his instruction and office work are also top notch. Even though he hasn’t studied formally, he is able to teach classes in English.

The Tsuyoshi that I thought of as a young guy is actually 31 years old. Now as a black belt, I want him to take trips overseas. It seems he is now thinking about where to go from here. But whichever road he takes I will support him. Whatever he decides will be good because he is Tsuyoshi and he is a good guy. I believe that he should make all decisions because it’s his life.
There are so any stories that I remember that I won’t put them down here. To put it simply though Tsuyoshi is like my little brother. That won’t ever change. There may come a time when we are no longer in the BJJ world with each other but even then I hope that he would come to me for advice when he has any kind of problem.
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It has been about 7 or 8 years since I opened my own Dojo. According to Professor Yuki Nakai, when you open a dojo it is like showing the world your way of life. I think that this is very true. For a Black Belt like Tsuyoshi Tamaki to have come out of my dojo is perhaps the most significant thing of my Jiu-jitsu life. I think that both CARPE DIEM and I can make this boast.
Tsuyoshi wasn’t raised in the best of environments. But he has been blessed with the best of friends in the dojo. He has had the support of a lot of people. In that regard I too would like to give my heartfelt thanks.

It is often said that a black belt isn’t a goal, it is a new start! While I am not sure about that I do know what I hope that for Tsuyoshi, there is a great Jiu-jitsu life laying down the road for him.

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