Tess Lanzarotta

such a positive environment

Hi Rob,

I just wanted to say thanks again for letting me come out and train with you all for a month! I really appreciate the opportunity – it’s such a positive environment and genuinely such a pleasure to visit!

I don’t know a huge amount about jiu jitsu (obviously), but I did train at a lot of different dojos over the years while I was doing judo, and it seems clear to me that you’ve built something really special at Island Top Team. It’s really rare to find a place where everyone is so supportive, generous, and focused on helping one another improve. You seem to have somehow managed to foster an atmosphere that both demands high standards and is still incredibly welcoming to and respectful of those who haven’t reached them yet. It’s a real privilege to get to be an occasional interloper and impose upon your hospitality!

Whenever I’m in Nanaimo, I feel like I learn a huge amount in a short time from you, from Shane, and from many other people at the club who are kind enough to offer their time and share their knowledge with me. It’s really striking how clearly you’re are able to articulate basic principles, explain why they’re important, and show how they’re built upon to create more complex techniques. It sticks with me so much more than the “this works for me” explanations that I often receive when I ask why I should work on a particular move. Even in a month, jiu jitsu makes more sense to me now.

Anyway, I’m sorry for gushing, but I wanted to make sure I properly expressed my gratitude and let you know how lucky I feel to have the chance to learn from you!

Best wishes…