Tuesday night for some reason is usually a rough night for me at class. Maybe it's the thought of work next day and low energy after a day at the office because I find it hard to concentrate and defend. I decided to make it a night of training where I would not use strength or muscle out of anything. That worked for a while until I went against the higher belts but even then I stayed calm and tried to work my way out of bad situations with my brain rather than use muscle. When things turned too bad I just tapped.
The first sparring session was with Hibino and here I learnt what it is like to be on the wrong end of a knee. I was in half guard and he spazzed around me trying to pass and smacked me with his knee into my cheekbone. It hurt and I stopped but I was pissed off more than anything. I just said it was ok and went on. A minute later his knee was crushing my balls and I had to stop again. I usually wear a protector but forgot it on the night. I will not do that again. I may even wear a mouth piece when sparring with him because I could have easily lost a couple of teeth from the earlier knee. From now on I think I will play top with him and give him no space until he learns to calm his game. He is tough to handle though, being strong and athletic.
I got myself to a rear mount position a few times and really need to practice this more because I find it hard to get that 2nd hook. I've also been playing around looking for a low guard pass when you forward flip over the butterfly guard. It is something to move to when I fail on my standard passing technique which involves pinning their hook and close passing over the knee.
I pretty much left the dojo in a down mood. Wondering whether I will ever improve. It keeps me up at night thinking about how I can get better and what I should have done in a certain situation during class. I know I don't train as often as I should but a year and a half of BJJ should count for something. One of my weaknesses is my takedown. There are just too many judo guys over here who can dominate me on stand up. Even though I know a lot of takedowns I lack the confidence to use them. I've recognized a stage that I am passing through. It is the hesitation of a new blue belt. One where I refrain from trying something new because it will put me in the dangerous situation of tapping. I know I really shouldn't care about tapping at the dojo but there is a part of me that wants to perform well and show the instructor that his trust in me as a blue belt was not misplaced. I also look at the higher blue belts and see their confidence in themselves and how they actually will work on new moves, and even tap to lower belts or inferior opponents because in the back of their mind they know they can tap them at will. It's a mental aspect of jiu-jitsu I just need to come to terms with.
Another problem I am facing is the ability to finish my opponent. I get a good position but cannot finish them. This is particularly common in mount or rear mount where I am unsure how to break through the opponents collar defence or worry too much about being reversed.
I hear that jiu jitsu is for the optimistic. I try to be this way, but it is hard work.
Sparring time: 7 x 6 mins = 42 mins