Thursday, 26 November 2015

BJJ Day 689: First time teaching

K-sensei is away right now in Taiwan teaching for about a month because Makoto is coming back to Japan for a holiday. That means we only have F-sensei, the owner of the club, to teach classes. He also does some moonlighting at other gyms so asks a few of his higher belts to teach. In the past I've been to Yoshida-san's lesson on deep half-guard and a couple of others but this time he asked me to cover the class on Wednesday night.

For the lesson I decided to stick with what I know best, which is lasso spider guard. This guard has seen me through a few competitions and has been my go to technique when I really needed something. I planned the lesson our roughly on paper because I didn't want to half-ass it. In the end it didn't turn out exactly how I imagined it in my head.

Only 2 guys, Matt and Kaba-san, turned up to train. I was hoping for more of the beginners to come because a lot of them either just rely on their judo/takedown so never play guard or are guard players who are still green and unsure what to do. I think the spider/lasso guard is a really strong guard to play especially for beginners. It gives excellent control over the opponent, you can sweep, submit and also move into other guards seamlessly. At the end of the class I planned to do specific sparring at 1 min with one person taking a lasso grip and trying to use the techniques while the passer try to give 50% and attempts to free himself from the hooks. Unfortunately, there were not enough people and I ran out of time.

Things I noticed about teaching for the first time:
1. It is hard to explain a technique in detail even if you know how to execute it. This is especially applicable when teaching in a second language.
2. The time will go faster than you think so focusing on a smaller aspect of the guard is probably best. Example: What to do when the opponent performs a certain action. How to submit only from this position. Transitioning to other guards.
3. You have to have confidence in the technique you are teaching. If you teach a technique that you have never or seldom use, the student will pick up on this and it will show in your explanation because there will be less details that you can give.

Despite the crappy weather and low attendance it was a fun night. Some good sparring with Matt and Kaba-san of me trying to work out of bad positions mostly. Jiu-jitsu never gets easier but it always stays fun, or at least it should and if it doesn't, go find another sport like ping pong or something.

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