Monday, June 6, 2011

Monday night BJJ with gi

I arrived at class a few minutes late, and by that time, everyone was doing the warm up rolling. I did my own warm up, and after a few minutes of that, we were called into observe the technical demonstrations. As a special treat, we were reviewing some often taken for granted fundamentals, as there is a BJJ tournament on this weekend.

First we worked on our basic scissors sweep, from guard. Step by step, the first thing you want to do is make sure that your main grip anchor is set up properly. You want to have an outside grip on their collar, with your hand deeply sunk in to the cavity created by the collar and the nape of the neck. Your other hand needs to be controlling their outside arm, hopefully creating a situation where it is impossible for them to post (support their weight, block movement) with that arm. Your legs start in open guard, and depending on the momentum of their forward drive, you may need to either hip escape first, or shrimp away to get a good leverage point for both your legs on their body. Opposite to their outside arm (that you are hopefully controlling) you should be sneaking your knee in to get a nice control point on their trunk. Your other leg, should be preventing them from shifting their base, usually a nice way to do this is to just pop your foot onto their knee, or right beside it. Now, without getting too comfortable in the one position,. because you really want the movement to be as dynamic as possible, you need to pull their body toward yourself, with the ideal goal of them 'falling' forward and attempting to post with the arm you are controlling, and at this time, create the leg sweeping action by literally chopping with the 'scissors' created by the position of your legs.

After the basic sweep, we started drilling a reversal to a stuffing of this sweep.
The sweep was stuffed by using the other (uncontrolled) arm, to brace against the knee, and thus prevent the shifting of the weight. In this situation, you wanted to two-on-one control the inside sleeve, and drive it across your body to the ground, where you can take the back with an over-reaching underhook. At this point, you simply need to roll backwards to take them into side control.

That's all the technical drilling we did, and spent the rest of the night (an hour) rolling.

It was boss.

More Later.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Workin hard to make a livin'

So, I've been busy recently, and unable to get to training as often as I'd like. But work has to come before training, in this world. This is what I've been working on:

This first one is the bottom floor. Concrete slab. We dug out ALOT of earth here. Very stable foundation.

This is from the second storey. In this photo from left to right: My brothers John and Ken, and on the right is the Builder that we work for, Andy.

Working on the second floor at the moment, we're standing on tru-deck (a composite wooden board commonly used in flooring) fastened to the 8 x 2 inch thick Joices.

This is the second floor again. The black plastic on the left is sealing the air cracks out of the blocked wall we have removed. This was a double-brick in heritage style, and removing the bricks on its own was a full days work for four people.

This large steel beam is at the outermost edge of the wall, which will be used in tandem as a support for the roof, and a mounting for a sliding glass door.

More soon.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Thai Boxing Thursday.

Due to a personal financial crisis, I have been unable to train recently, but I was finally able to return tonight. I really felt that pain of being out and then training again for the first time.

I actually survived the skipping pretty decently, but after the skipping was done, I was already 'well knackered' to use a colloquialism. After the warm up punch and kicking across the mat (in pairs with thai pads) we started on our combo drills. Tonights drills were: jab, cross, hook, shin kick to body - switch front leg round kick to body, cross, uppercut - then switch front knee to grabbing (clinch) right thrusting knee to body.

Soon as we were done with this, we did a two step random striking/blocking drill and then right into sparring.
Sparring was done in three minute rounds with two people in front of everyone else, with one person staying in, and then effectively doing two rounds in a row two people at a time.

Altogether we did about six rounds each. I got pained on.
Now I'm relaxing at home, planning on going tomorrow night. Perhaps I'll go along to the fundamentals course, and decide after that whether I'm feeling up to the gi jujutsu.

More later.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Thai Boxing Tuesday

Often my favourite session of the week, Tuesday is the biggest night for Muay Thai. In addition to the regular guys, Tuesday is the day that we have a few extra casuals and often beginners, too (meaning TONS of sparring partners) but alas, we didn't get to do any sparring last night! FML.

Instead, we spent about forty minutes working on nerve deadening/conditioning. All around the edges of the mat, pairs of people were engaged in one of the following exercises for 2 minutes or so, and then moving on to the next station/next exercise, having fun with such movements as these:

Elbows angled down onto the top of the thigh, crunching the thigh.
Copping inside and outside leg kicks to the thigh.
Back against the wall, copping both straigh and looping punches to the stomach (the hooks to the oblique abs really hurt)
Taking turns kicking the post at the corner of the cage
Elbowing the post at the corner of the cage
Laying flat on your back, someone standing on/jumping up and down on your stomach

None of these exercises were fun, and I'm still in pain. I think I'm going to curl up into a ball and die. Later.

MMA Fundamentals (1hr) Gi BJJ (1.5 hrs)

Much slower paced than Friday's session, with the large bulk of the lesson focused on using hip escapes and shrimping to escape side control.

Had some mild success during rolling in Fundamentals. The class is largely made up from people who are interested in getting into MMA, and has a mix of those with little to no MA history, and a sprinkling of people like myself who have a history, but are taking the extra classes for the sake of fitness.

This means, as you might have guessed - that there are quite a few people in this class who have had basically no significant experience with groundfighting. Therefore, when we roll, I have to pick my opponents kind of carefully, because I don't want to ONLY be rolling against beginners (sure it's fun to get every 'tap' but I don't learn too much) but because of my size, there are only a couple of people there I can get a pretty good roll with.

This of course is not a problem at all during Gi BJJ. I think there are less than 5 people who are newer than me (six weeks back in the gym) which also means of course, that I'm in the bottom 5/6 of the class, and therefore no matter who I roll with, there is every chance I get crushed. Which I do, regularly.

Friday, April 15, 2011

BJJ With Gi Training Report

I'm finally winding down after what can probably be described as my most intense session ever. We started right after our warmup with a quick Q&A on how to bust defenses from side control. The two options presented, were to 2-on-1 the gi sleeve (perhaps a little sneaky d^_^b ) and stand up, posting our rear foot in front, to literally 'rip' the arm up into position. The other method offered was to post your front leg outside a little, more on their shoulder, and using your rear arm, take their lapel, and bring them in close to your chest, rolling to your own back, to take their back. At this point, you can lock in your opposite hook.

We drilled this for 3 minutes swapping side control with our partner, to find the way we were most comfortable doing it. I found that the 2-on-1 sleeve grab was probably the easiest to work, even though it's not really allowed in competition. After this, we rolled for about 20-25 minutes.

We then congregated for another Q&A and then, we were drilling a scenario. We are in competition. We are 10 points down. There is 45 seconds left in the match, we have to (from top) make something happen, ie: submit, or we 'lose', whereas the guy on the bottom simply had to survive to 'win'; after all, he was up 10 points in this scenario.

After this, we straight rolled for another 30 minutes. This was broken up into 3 minute sessions with 15-30 second rest periods, just enough to quickly grab a new partner; we were to start once everyone was in position.

The last thing we did, was something called the "Shark Attack". One of the competitive BJJ players at the gym had to undergo a gruelling test of endurance. One fresh man every minute for 16 minutes. Even submissions gave him no rest, and no positional reset, he had to work for it again.

I took the third and the eleventh periods against him. In the third period, I simply survived. (My coach in the background yelling 'DONT YOU DARE TAP OUT! at me while I was under what could be explained fairly accurately as mild duress in a position where I was turtling against a fairly forceful arm choke for 10 seconds or more). The GI really made my job much easier, as I'm far more accustomed to the groundfighting of Judo (which is exclusively Gi) than the No-Gi Jujutsu training that I normally do.
In the eleventh period, I was submitted by lapel choke, but then took a solid position for an extended armbar using what I now know to be the 'bananarama'. (Another trick I learned from Omega). I didn't cause a submission, for lack of the arm being fully locked out, but I was reasonably primed to make one. This was the closest anyone had come to submitting him so far. The timer ended, and he got a fresh man.

When the ordeal was finally over, the Jujutsuka was hailed as a hero by the rest of the guys in the gym, me included, as it is definitely the most gruelling physical punisment I have ever witnessed.

Afterward, I asked him if it was the hardest thing that he ever had to do. He said that it would be close.

Weekend is up, No Gi on monday. Peace out.