Archive for October, 2012

Semana Fácil

October 29, 2012


Had an easy week of BJJ.  Due to some commitments I only trained on Thursday, but I made the most of it.  We worked on defending a sucker punch, to a take down, to the mount and applying an arm bar from the mount.

I wasn’t as smooth as I have been in the past with my transition from mount to the armbar.  I think I was doing it too fast and my technique suffered.  I better pay attention to that in future classes.

Knowing that I wouldn’t be training I spared with 2 of our highest belts.  BrnB Vince and PB Ian.  They are both monsters to roll with in every aspect of the game.  They are both a deadly mix of strength and technique.  Trying to break PB Ian’s guard is like trying to break the guard of an Ent (see Lord of the Rings).  BrnB Vince is like a spider in the guard.  His legs and arms go everywhere and neutralize you.  He doesn’t even have to use his hands if he chooses.  It’s quite the challenge.  So I took it on.

I have to say that I didn’t do too bad.  I effectively passed PB Ian’s guard a couple of time and even avoided 2 triangle attempts by him.  A feat which is not easily accomplished.  With BrnB Vince I spent a lot of time fighting off his attacks while in mount.  A lot of attacks.  I ended up on the bottom of his mount because of his sweeps from the guard.  I couldn’t stop his sweeps no matter what I did.

I got tapped by them a couple of times, but I can’t remember how many.  It doesn’t matter.  What’s important is that I learned something.  I should trust my techniques.  Those techniques that worked really worked and I need to believe in them more.

How was your week?



October 22, 2012


Had a great week of jiu-jitsu.  First, the Metamoris Pro event happened last week and it inspired me and because of that inspiration I had a great week at BJJ.

I’m sure everyone and their mother has written about it and analyzed it until it doesn’t exist any more.  I’m sure everyone’s talking about the “controversy” surrounding Andre Galvao’s statements after the match.  So I won’t get into it that much, but here are my quick thoughts.

The good:

Jiu-jitsu.  When you have the top of the top competing the result is a beautiful jiu-jitsu.  The technique was amazing to watch and I thought the match ups were perfect.

The production (in part).  I liked that it was one mat with great camera work above and on the side to capture all the action.  One of my big frustrations with the broadcasts of BJJ and Judo events is that there are so many matches going on you tend to miss some things and see others.  During the Olympics, NBC would only broadcast the Judo part online and I had to log into 2 different screens to see both mats.  It’s hard enough to watch one judo match imagine watching 2 going on at the same time?

The bad:

The production (in part).  First and foremost was starting the show 40 minutes after it was supposed to start.  I’m not surprised since this organization is run by Brazilians.  The are notorious for being late.  In fact they live by a saying “Why do today what you can pay someone to do the day after tomorrow.”  However, that is no excuse.  Not really a good way to get things going.  5 minutes is one thing or even 10 minutes might be forgivable, but 40 minutes is inexcusable.  And when it went live the audio feed was in Spanish and then all of a sudden you hear Rener and someone else talking saying something like “They can’t hear me…”  Ouch.
There were too many odd transitions from a promo video to a match to a recap video.  After a match they would cut to Rener and the other guy (I never got his name) sitting there awkwardly and then they would realize they were on camera and they would speak.  Also, during one of the matches the play-by-play team’s mics were off so all you heard was the crowd and the coaches.  Then, the mics were turned on and it sounded like they were whispering.

The controversy:

Everyone has an opinion so about Galvao’s comments after his match with Ryron Gracie.  The only thing I have to say is that if you agree to rules of a fight you can’t complain about them afterwards.  He didn’t help his case when he tweeted a complain the next day.

I’m still a fan though and I’m looking forward to more of Galvao’s competitions in the future.

The inspiration: Ryron Gracie.  He took on a fierce competitor and hung with him.  That’s pretty awesome in my book and it inspried me.  I just got it into my head that I need to approach rolling with the same calm that Ryron did in his match with Galvao.

Just relax and go with it.  And that’s what I’ve been doing.  On Thursday I went to class and partnered up with a new WB named Mark.  He is super aggressive because he’s pretty fit and he still doesn’t understand the philosophy of BJJ yet (no different than any new white belt) and I just flowed with him and tapped him when the opportunity presented itself.

He would let him pull guard and sweep me to mount, I would escape, get to side mount or full mount and tap him.  I controlled him when I needed to and would be as efficient with my movements as I could be and wouldn’t force a submission at all.  And it worked.  That in my book is a good roll.

Then on Saturday I went with 3 different guys, all new PBs for 8 minutes each and hung with them as well.  I didn’t tap any of them, but they didn’t get me either.  I focused on being relaxed even when the situation was dire.  I paid attention to any tension in my body and let it flow out of me.  I escaped an arm bar, two triangles and a bunch of collar chokes from the mount.

On a regular day I would have been tapped a bunch of times, but that didn’t happen and I owe it to the inspiration I received from Ryron.  GJJ all the way!  🙂

Did you train?  How did it go for you?

Chau e bom dia!

Dia de Promoção

October 14, 2012


Today was a great day.  The reason?  We had a great class and 4 guys got promoted to Purple Belt.  That was awesome!

Today we worked on the defense against a bear hug.  I worked with a new WB named Tab.  He’s young and fortunately he’s careful.  He goes slow, pays attention and learns quickly.  It makes for good practice in a couple of ways.  First you get to walk through the techniques very slowly.  Second of all you get some experience teaching everyone.

I know there’s a lot of b.s. out there about self-defense jiu-jitsu versus tournament-style jiu-jitsu.  It doesn’t matter.  At the end of the day it’s about how well you’re taught the techniques.  Have a wife who is a teacher I can firmly attest with rank definitiveness that the teacher is the most important part of learning.

I haven’t always been comfortable with teaching anyone.  I don’t feel that I’m good enough at Jiu-Jisu so I have this mental block that you shouldn’t teach it unless you’re good at it.  And because I haven’t been comfortable with the idea I never think it through.  Maybe I should take a private with my instructor and get tips on how to explain things.  One thing our instructor is great at is teaching Jiu-Jitsu.
Anyway, we went to the ground and worked on sweeping someone from the guard to mount, applying an armbar if the sweep fails and then applying an omoplata if the armbar fails.  Good stuff.  It was great connecting on e technique to the other.

At some point our instructor left the room and comes back demanding that we all line up.  He walks over and hands Purple Belts to 4 of my friends.  No one knew about it.  No one saw it coming and it was awesome.  Well deserved.  It was a great way to end the day.  Really proud of my friends and it inspired me to keep working and getting better.

Hope you all had as an inspiring a day as I had.  Have a great weekend!

Chau e bom dia.