Saturday, 24 August 2013

On the Mat Day 401: An Unexpected Guest

I had to take a couple of detours on the way to the dojo last night, picking up a 7 kg bag of rice for the wife and going to the drug store because I had ran out of shaving foam - not that I need it nowadays. As I pulled up to our club, I saw the familiar gait of Akira, as he walked towards the club. Akira is a guy I worked with for about 6 months before he left the company I used to work for. Suffice it to say that, in a sea of grey and robotic lifeforms, he kept me sane by talking about martial arts and boxing. He is a pro boxer and I always kept hounding him to do BJJ because both those arts in combination are deadly.

So he turned up, much to my surprise. He had previously written a mail saying he would come and I had given it a 20% chance of actually happening. Lots of people tell me they want to try BJJ but never do. I introduced him to Dmitri and the 3 of us worked on Kimura as shown by F-sensei. There were some interesting details that I have forgotten over the course of time, such as not pushing the arm you want to take using your strength, but instead catching the arm, and flipping your elbow over the opponent's head to touch the mat so he cannot return the arm to a safe position. It's all mechanics and works well. He also taught how to strip the arm from safe points of gripping the belt or under the leg to finish the technique.

During sparring I went first with Akira because I did not want some white belt with a boner to make him hate BJJ forever. I played lightly around with him, easily submitting him, but there were glimpses of good movement from him, such as being quick in a scramble and a couple of shrimp movements. He is athletic and if he continues grappling should do well. I then sparred with a big white belt who I had easily submitted numerous times previously, he came in hard on me while I just thought about working escapes and such with him. He is the heavy type of white belt that spazzes, all knees and elbows, forgets the techniques he's been taught, uses strength and goes crazy to push my legs to the mat and eventually gets frustrated then exhausted. I ended up with a black eye from that round which aches a little today. It's a real shiner too. Tsuzuki came later but I didn't get a chance to spar with him. He has been living in Tokyo and goes to Axis there. He came over to me later and talked for a while, saying it was a shame we didn't get a chance to spar. He looks slimmer than before with abs showing. It seems his work in Tokyo allows for more time to train.

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