Tuesday, 8 February 2011

On the Mat Day 133: Side Control and Submissions

I really should continue to take notes as I used to do way back at the beginning. I often forget the techniques that I'm taught in class. Sometimes I wish I had a video recorder implanted in my head so I could record everything. It would be much easier to remember them if I went to class more but right now twice a week is about all I can manage. We worked on side control and a few favourites of mine cropped up, such as north-south choke which I haven't used in a while. It's a good choke because it doesn't rely on the gi. I will try to use it more along with the darce choke from kesa-gatame when the opponent tries to shrimp away. We also worked on underarm grip on the collar (4 fingers in) which I keep meaning to try during sparring.

The weather is getting warmer and going to class is much more bearable now that the mats no longer feel like a block of ice. Numbers are still low for Friday but Yamada-san who is a white belt and has been coming for a while turned up for uchi-komi at the start which meant that I at least had a partner for drills. I used to spar with him and he would go nuts to catch me with something. On Friday though it was very easy to control him and I actually let stuff go a lot and moved out of positions I would normally have just held desperately to get a submission. I am letting him in the game I guess is the only way of putting it. I also notice more about his movement, where he makes mistakes and where his base is weak. These are good signs for me, showing that I am improving. I don't go to class as often as some but I am regular. I think that's important. My son is even starting to enjoy BJJ games with me. He likes the "crazy legs" game from the Bullyproof DVD. His side control is getting really good and I could not actually escape unless I muscled out of it and he's only 6! Maybe I have created a monster.

Teo came to class on Friday also. I think it's great to have another black belt to train with. Steel sharpens steel and all that. He lets me in the game and urges me on with positive comments. I love how most of the guys you train with encourage others. BJJ class is a great place to foster positive attitude. I know in the past at martial arts classes, they were mostly a solitary climb up the ranks. The was little encouragement and no real way of gauging how good you are. BJJ is totally different.

I spoke to K-sensei after class and learnt something new. Apparently when you get a black belt in BJJ, that's all it is. There is no ranking associated with the belt for new black belts. After 3 years you become shodan (1st dan) and then are allowed to promote students to black belt. He confirmed a fact that I already knew in that you can promote those with a belt lower than you. So purple can make blue, brown make purple and blue and so on.

Sparring time: 5 x 6 mins = 30 mins
Punch bag workout 3 x 3 min = 9 mins

Obvious weak areas: Escaping from rear mount

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