Sunday, February 20, 2011

choking turtles and other funny business

I didn't go to class last Thursday. When I turned up for open mat on Friday, I was told that the guys missed me... AAAAWWWW!


I also heard that the Wednesday night class was well received. Obviously it was talked about and given the seal of approval by the participants as well as our instructor. How good is that??

The joint mobility warm up I gave them also had chins wagging. I heard I made them do such terribly(!) complicated arm movements and other weird stuff. It was soooo hard. Sensei asked if I made them do my favourite weird and complicated arm movments, but when I explained that all I expected were figure eights, we both had a good laugh. But I got talking to one of the Karate BBs who has done some FlowFit and wanted to know if I knew of it. As it happens, I do have that DVD, as well as some others. So we might get our heads together some day. From there we started talking about kettlebells etc.

Ha, it's funny how one experimental evening class has led on to so many other things.

Anyway, I took open mat easy because I didn't feel so fantabulously fit and well. I suspected the beginnings of a cold, and that prediction has in fact come true :-(

So I started by slow rolling with the nemesis, and I think we did some really good stuff. He is very controlled and we got a great flow going, with loads of good transitions. Terrific warm up. We laughed, as after 10 minutes, we had warmed up and learned something in the process. The other guys were heaving and panting. I'm not saying they didn't learn anything... Anyway, we proceeded to a normal speed roll with submissions, and I promptly fell victim to his methodical crushing annihilations. Sorry, I have bright moments, but overall he still kills me. That's why I gave him that nickname. But pssst! don't tell him ;-) And when I grow up, I'll crush him!

I had a couple of rolls with another white belt. Similar size, a bit less experience. He rolls more open, and by being more aggessive, he opens stuff up. So with him, I tend to have much more luck, not just escaping, but everything else. I often catch him in subs, too. Mind, he will give me hell's own trouble once his escapes get better and he learns to be tighter. He had a few question regarding (you guessed it) escapes, so at the end, I showed him a few things to help escape mount and side control, emphasizing that he should start escaping before his opponent settles. He did very passable hip elbow escapes at the end.

On Saturday, Sensei asked me to take the warm up, and just do joint mobility stuff. Haha, more figure eights for the guys... More frowns. I also asked for figure eights using the hips. Oh dear. Haha. And then, to annoy them, I said that with a bit of practice, they would make reasonable belly dancers. Sensei thought that was funny, and pointed out that the other lady who used to come and grapple teaches that in her spare time. Foolishly, I replied that I, too, used to bellydance. That brough a chorus of "oh No!" from the ranks. :-)

Then, in the spirit of the era of experimentation and crazy stuff, we were told to wrestle (lightly), but with a twist. We had to start by lying belly down on the floor, facing each other and gripping hands. Then, imagining we had to stay low like in a commando crawl, we had to try to submit each other. As there were "imaginary machine guns" at about Sensei's eye level (sitting down), it was imperative NOT to sit up. In fact, any body part sticking up was "shot".  At one point I lifted my partner's leg with a hook from guard bottom, just so it would be shot at. :-) Mean. Ha. And then was just getting around to choking him when we had to stop.

After all that folly, we were paired up and worked on attacking turtles with clock chokes and crucifixes. I think I have this clock choke business pretty worked out. And I even managed to roll over well to get the crucifix. The only thing that went wrong was an elbow I got to the side of the head. But it was purely accidental, and I forgave him immediately.

For the last few minutes, we wrestled. Though I wasn't feeling totally fantastic, feeling the advancing cold, I made a thoroughly good job of dominating my poor partner. It is soooo nice to be paired with someone about my size. Sweeps work! At one point I got some overhook on his arm from guard bottom, with my hand in the opposite collar. But somehow I couldn' finish the choke. So I swept him and finished it from mount. I probably couldn't keep the dumb grin off my face. I'm just not used to actually stringing stuff together, let alone plan ahead. And a similar thing happened again. Lots of time to think. My partner fell into white belt habits again, straining hard. But for a change, I didn't just strain against him, instead I worked around it. So that felt really good and made for a nice finish to the week.

And now it's Sunday night, my nose is running, my eyes watering and I'm hoping that by tomrrow night I'll be ok. But probably it'll take another day. Meanwhile, I'm working my way through watching the Ryan Hall DVDs. Really good stuff, can't wait to try it all out.

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