Wednesday, 14 July 2010

On the Mat Day 84: Scarf Hold Escapes

This week will see the end of the rainy season. From Friday we will see the Sun again. That's when the heat will come. It is hot enough now. Last night the dojo was 25 degrees C and a really high humidity. I'd guess around 80%, perhaps more. There was only me and another purple belt there. I don't know his name because I've only met him a few times. He's a boisterous, pot-bellied type with a neck as thick as a bull's. He usually smells of cigarettes too but last night wasn't so bad. He told me that he is 38, the same age as me, and I must admit that it was hard to keep the shocked look off my face. Still, he seems like an amiable sort of guy. After uchi-komi, Koyama taught is escapes from scarf hold (Kesa-gatame) which is a scarf hold with control around the neck. You don't often see this with BJJ guys because it is easy to escape. The other type is Kuzushi Kesa-gatame which is with control on the far arm. I didn't know that it had a different name in Japanese until last night.

Drilling was quite boring actually because the purple belt was having a hard time with the heat. He is not very fit so I guess his body cannot cope so well with it. We had to keep stopping and starting, taking long breaks and the pace was just so slow. At one point I actually felt like it was a mistake to go on Tuesday instead of Monday. By the time sparring came around, things changed up a gear though.

By the end of the night, there were 4 purple belts, Atsushi (white) and Koyama (brown). Most of them were bigger than me too. Suzuki came later on and I sparred with him. He used to tap me out every 30 seconds but now I actually survived a lot better. I've been drilling roll to escape from the turtle position but have never ever managed to pull it off. Tonight though I did which seems like a small achievement but was a bit sticking point for me. The moment I used the escape felt great. I didn't even think about doing it, my body just did it. Here's to more escaping like that from turtle.

Sparring time: 5 rounds x 6 mins = 30 minutes

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