Thursday, 22 July 2010

On the Mat Day 86: Reaping the Arms

It was at an "oh my god" level of humidity last night. I felt ill just thinking about going to the dojo and training. The huge fan was blasting away when I got there and the 2 instructors were sitting in their gi as if it were spring weather outside. I really didn't feel like going and it seems that many other had the same opinion because there was only Akira last night to train with. He is getting good and it's interesting to watch his progression. I wonder if I will get better another 6 months down the line because that is how much of a head start he has on me. For the first time I noticed how grubby and nasty looking his white belt is. It is almost gray in colour and will probably be black given another year. It took me back to my karate days when I heard stories of the real reason people wore black belts - that they didn't wash them! I used to wash mine but haven't done so for about 6 months so mine too is also looking a bit nasty but not so much as Akira's. It doesn't disgust me at all. I take it as a sign of the hard work you put in. It goes with cauliflower ears from sparring or calluses from weight training.

We practiced reaping the arm close to the elbow joint. It was very interesting and was familiar to self-defence jiu-jitsu. I've seen the technique before so it wasn't too hard for me. I just had to apply it to the ground. Some very cool moves actually and Akira almost caught me with it during sparring. I must admit that there are annoyances for me when working techniques at the dojo. I guess I'm older than the others and understand learning or how to absorb knowledge better than the younger guys but it always seems to me that they are quiet happy to do the technique twice then move to the next one. I, on the other hand, could run through drilling all day. 100 Times I could do it and not get bored because I know it will have a better chance of sticking. Last night me and Akira took turns doing the technique twice, him first, then me, then back to him, then it was my turn and the instructor wanted to move on to the next technique. I lost my chance to work technique some more so that annoyed me. Until my son is older, I do not have an out-of-dojo partner to work technique with so need as much exposure as I can. If only I had a partner to work technique for say half an hour or so.

Sparring was hot and sweaty. I did not perform well. My guard was passed often because I let them control my legs too much. I almost got caught in a guillotine because my neck was exposed during a tackle. I could not get out of side control because I keep forgetting to underhook when I spin out. I get flattened out easily from side control because I do not protect the far arm. Good points were that I used an x-guard sweep and a sweep using the 1/4 guard hold on the opponents sleeve, it worked really really well. I would have never thought it but I actually enjoy being on bottom now rather than attacking from top. I tried to move my hips more in half-guard but still have problems. When I was in half-guard on top, it was easily for the opponent to return to full guard. :(

Total sparring time: 6 mins x 4 rounds = 24 mins

(Had to leave early because I strained the muscles on the outside of my right hip)

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