Friday, January 15, 2010

Wednesday double

Thankfully, it wasn't hot on Wednesday. Just right, really, only a little muggy in the evening.

Only three of us turned up for the lunchtime class. Our instuctor is back on deck after a shoulder injury kept him off the mat at the end of last year. So we took turns partnered with him and he had a chance for a couple of rolls.

We worked on a double hooking sweep. Once I realised just how close you need to get when you sit up into your partner with over and underhooks, and that you need to fall back a little on the side you are sweeping to, this worked wonderfully. We swept right into switchback side control.

From there we had a quick look at possible attacks, because the right arm is already isolated.

Then we looked at the scenario where our partner manages to free his top arm (maybe he pulled it through while we swept) and tries to roll away from us. We drilled trapping his arm to prevent him from getting away and set up a submission. If for example, we swept him to our left, he rolls to his left, we stick our right hand under his right elbow (from behind). Then we make a fist, drop our elbow down behind his back and consolidate our position while squatting behind him. Can't lean forward, need to keep the weight low behind him, with knees blocking his back. Then we have time to set up a submission.

From here we can go for an armbar by stepping over the head, or we can set up a kimura from north/south. We played around with this for a short time, trying out differnt options.

We finished off with a couple of rolls each. Same as on Monday, I managed to get good positions several times. I pulled off a wrist lock and tried a variety of chokes and armlocks. Of course I also had tons of opportunity to practice survival and escapes :-) Both rolls were productive, and the stray heel to the base of my nose didn't cause any damage.

I came back for the evening class. One of our instructors is moving away and this was one of his last two classes. Also, while our PFS classes are still in recess, I'm only doing BJJ, so I figured the extra class was the go, even if it meant to travel all the way into town a second time in one day.

Aside from one newbie who leaned some basic drills, the rest of us went from light free guard passing to guard passing with subs and then to free wrestling. It was a medium sized class, so I had lots of rolls with various partners. I wasn't quite as fresh as I was for the lunchtime class, and with higher humidity, I felt like being in a sauna.

I rolled with two bluebelts, both of whom had suggestions to make. One comment was that I need to be careful when I commit my weight, be it guard passing or position changes when on top. He said I commit too much of my weight which makes it easy for people to sweep me. I laughed and said that with my (lack of) weight, I need to use all of it. But he's right of course. I need to give more thought about keeping base and maybe concentrating a percentage of my weight on that part of my opponents anatomy which gives me the best control, ie: control ONE shoulder instead of just lying across his top half.

The other suggestion came when I was guard passing. Generally, I manage to pass open guard reasonably well, but yesterday I had troubles. So I was busy trying to pin one leg down. And because I wasn't thinking, I was also trying to push the other knee down. He showee me a better way to pin the first leg and pointed out that if I pull up on his other knee, that would rotate his hips toward me and help flatten the first leg to the floor. Of course, it's obvious when I think about it. Duh!

That aside, I had plenty of fun. I was mauled as usual by the really big four stripe guy. I was pleased to get past his open guard once and actually get to side control. I lasted there for less than 2 seconds and it went all bad for me after that. However, I rolled out of one omoplata attempt and I know I'm making it harder and harder for him to get a hold of my arms. We tend to make jokes about it, after all he is twice my weight. One roll we started with him lying down, sort of roman emperor pose, propped up on his elbows. Then he waved me in, with the sort of grin like his favourite dessert had been served. Needless to say, the outcome for me was tapping :-).

One of the bluebelts caught me in a wristlock. Sneaky, and just as I had escaped something else. Can't remember too much else aside from the issues about the open guard passing. Aside from that, he caught me in a gi choke. Some rolls later I finally retaliated - with an wristlock :-).

I had one roll with our purple belt instructor. It's been ages since I've wrestled with him. His favourite is switch base side control and he knows a lot of horrible submissions from there. Anyway, we started from knees and I surprised him by snapping his head down, he went turtle, I fumbled around and he rolled me but somehow there was a scramble, I passed his legs and ended up - in switchbase side control. While I was busy gloating, he swept me - into switchbase side control :-) He is much bigger than me, and it's not a nice place to be. Soon after (details escape me), he got me in some kind of crank. Head facing one way, legs the other. Not nice. Humans weren't designed to be corkscrews.. Tapping time!

I did have a couple more rolls, I remember one where my opponent (my fellow three -striper) had top half guard. He uses his shoulder wickedly. Being under his side control is no fun, either. I think I escaped once, just to get into the same position, and eventually he got me in a figure four.

A whole hour of one good roll after another, even though I felt like pizza dough some of the time. I was so hot and tired at the end, there was sweat pooling in my ears. Yuk. Gi was twice it's normal weight. I came home with new matburn, grazes on my elbows and left knee, a bruised chin, a pinch/bruise to my left side and assorted other bruises of course. But as happy as can be.

Due to being super careful about drinking plenty and eating a little before class, and then something straight after class on the way home, I felt excellent the next day and after that. It makes so much difference to the amount of soreness, if I feed myself well. I'm absolutely fit and rearing to go for my next class tonight :-)

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