Woke up with a headache and congestion; cursing Bree (who swore up and down that she was not contageous). I decided to skip lunchtime class and take some acetaminophen.
Felt better later (altho still kinda tired). Traffic was awful, though. Tens of thousands of my tax dollars were recently spent on these fancypants new digital highway signboards. 95% of the time, all they say is the speed limit- which is already on the $60 metal sign, thank you very much. Today, the first one after the 520 bridge said, "Left lane blocked". Traffic was gridlocked, yet the sheep started jostling (as much as one can jostle, in gridlock) to get into the right lane. We crawled another two miles (without seeing any blockages) to the next digital sign, which said, "Right lane blocked". Heh. Well, if they’re BOTH blocked, that certainly explains why I’m sitting here reading a magazine instead of driving. We crawl for another few miles and suddenly the road is flowing again. There never was a tangible blockage. I’m so glad we have those helpful new signboards.
Anyway, I missed the entire first hour of the two hour class. (It was supposed to be "gi", but nobody had a gi.) I caught just a little bit of technique drilling.
Top side control, with the opponent hugging you. Frame up and press on hir face/jaw to turn hir face to the mat (remember to put one hand on top of the other in the frame so that you can use the strength of both to push). When hir hands come loose, pry one off and keylock.
If s/he straightens the arm: shift to just distal of the elbow, turn hir thumb to the ceiling, turn your "platform" arm sideways so that it’s higher (bonus violence: the bony blade of your arm digs into hir arm), and press down to armbar. I have seen this before, but didn’t retain all the vital bits- so I was happy to see that again and get a chance to tidy it up.
If s/he turns the arm downward toward the hip- change grips, switch your hips as if going into scarf, throw the leg over hir neck, and kimura. I was so happy to see this, since this was the move that I *ALMOST* tapped that tweenager out with the other night, and had been wishing for a review on. (Hey, by the way, I also wish for a million dollars and a new car. Just puttin’ that out there…) Bonus: oh, this is way cool. Once in this postition, you can also attack your opponent’s OTHER arm (surprise, dude!). If s/he left the arm up while you were stepping over, it is now wedged under your elbow- and you can pull it back, hip forward, and straight-armbar it. If s/he kept the arm low while you were stepping over, you can shift your foot a titch and now you have a mounted triangle. Ta-da! BJJ is The Bomb. I had been debating while sitting in traffic whether this sojourn had been worth it for just half a class, but this technique set alone was definitely worth the aggravating commute.
I am really starting to enjoy Cindy’s method of teaching a sequence of techniques. "Try for this; if the guy defends by doing that, switch to this other thing; and you can also get that additional sub from here." I had a hard time with this teaching method at first, and frankly if I’d been a raw newbie and that was my only instruction, I would have *really* struggled- as slow as I am to pick stuff up. But now that I know a thing or two, and I’m not having to strain my brain to remember every detail of how to make a keylock work, I can better look at the "big picture". I like having ideas for what to flow to from this or that.
It’s very different from Gracie Barra, where for the most part you learn one to three isolated techniques and drill the repetitive crapola out of each of them in turn. This is really what I *need* to learn (and try to retain) how to do a specific technique.
The two methods are working very well for me as a package deal!
Timed spars- I did two with Joseph (the tweenager that I’d rolled with on Wednesday), one with Miko (another big tweenage guy), one with George, one with Leilani, one with one of the capoeira guys whose name I did not catch.
Both tweenage boys were fun. Once again, they were both *mostly* good about not putting weight on me. Once again they get a little frantic and use strength to get out when they feel me slapping a sub on. I need to set my subs up faster, and/or try to distract people so that it’s not obvious what I’m doing. We both tapped each other out a couple times.
One of the most useful things about rolling with these big kids is that it’s teaching me to pay more attention to staying off the bottom and (Heaven forbid) don’t pull guard. I do *NOT* want to be on the bottom or have guard on these heavy guys- I need to stay on top and mobile if at all possible. Every time I have the urge to pull guard, I check myself.
George let me tap him once with a rear choke, and let me reverse him twice with that neato reversal from failed guillotine. I sure do like that.
Leilani- I mostly stayed on top of her and made her work to defend (which she is doing well). The capoeira guy was *very* flexible and squirmy, which was troublesome for me even though he didn’t have a ton of technique.
(pic- Lindsey (with some unfortunate soul who apparently just took a shot to the testicles))