Tuesday, 26 August 2008

Small thoughts and pain

Just a small entry on some recent thoughts and happenings.

Recent status:

My mystery injury from cycling seems completely gone, cardio is good, strength is feeling good to. Am eating to much dairy and drinking to much beer. Hair is shorter, guillotines easier to escape :) .

Sparred more often now with Chris, our in house power house. His not the biggest, but pound for pound probaly the strongest and best out of us (by my measurements anyway). He plays an open guard game with a very good scissor sweep, his strength is keeping you under control even when he is completely stacked and you are moving to side control. He also doesnt get tired and is patient. Am looking forward to seeing him in competition. He has inspired me to try use more open guard, using what Ive learnt from how he controls me.

Same session I catch an elbow on the bottom of my eye, it bruises up but it goes well with the hair and now I dont have a problem getting a seat on the train. Had problems subbing a guy I usually throw armbars at will on, which is great. Really am genuinly happy when I see such a noticable difference in people who Ive been training longer than. Main thing I noticed was he was keeping his elbows in and keeping my hips down. I used this as an oppertunity to try something other than an armbar or triangle. Omoplata comes on nicely but abit messy.

Another one of my compatriots has also noticably improved his guard pass defense, at the cost of being less mobile. But still making it very hard to break his legs open. Which reminds me to give more of a think to guard breaking, once the legs are open I do well but I find it hard to open them. Even with standing or arching back. Giving them an arm seems to be the easiest way but quite dangerous especially now that many of them have caught on to it.

The sit up sweep is now my bread and butter, my go to move, my first move and often my second. This however becomes a problem when they are able to defend the sweep by pinning down with their weight. Their posture is broken, but no sweep. The best and most obvious counter to them basing out to stop the sweep is the kimura but I need to practise it more, as once I grab the wrist the game is up. Sometimes this leads to me then getting the sweep. I feel I could use another confident sweep, scissor sweep seems the next best so Ill need to focus on that.

Sparred Chris again just a few hours ago it went something like this:

I start in his guard, I posture pin his hips and try to feel for space. He grabs my sleeves, opens his guard and goes for spider guard. No problem Ive been watching him, I try and stay low with a sprawl to stop any potential scissor sweep and try keep his feet at distance to try and pass them. He has a good grip on my sleeves, I use the lapel of his jack to try and pin his hand/ break his grip. Kind of works and I try explode into passing his legs, he keeps me close and under control so I cant get anywhere. This repeats itself again again. He tries for a triangle, I defend, gets mount. Dang, he also has my arm. I grip my own jacket as he has a kimura grip. I also become aware I am being video recorded.... . I hide my shame under his legs. He breaks my grip on my jacket and every single bone in my arm clicks as the kimura goes on faster than we both expected. I howl like a puppy in a meatblender. He immediately lets go and I roll about on the floor, laughing hysterically for some unknown reason. He apoligises earnestly and I assure him its not his fault ( I should of tapped when I knew my grip was gonna break). I still find it very funny and am giggling as my instructer checks on me. Ill add the video when it turns up!

I am having trouble touching the same shoulder of that arm, and adrenaline is pretty high still. It does move generally ok though so nothing broken or dislocated. When I get home I ice it...and write this blog. Chris shall now be known as the pole axe of doom (his polish and brings doom).

I was sparring a heavy guy and tried for the golden sit up sweep of gold, he surges his weight forward to counter it as it then straightens me out flat on my back and pins me. He then stops and starts chastising himself, as its something he always finds himself doing. I found this interesting as even though it seemed a good thing to do he was annoyed as he thought it was hindering his progress (quite possible). I thought I should apply this to myself, I know I can do the sit up sweep so maybe I should give it a lil break (against less imposing opponents anyway)and try focus on other things; different sweeps, different subs, transitioning, controling and breaking my opponent down, etc.

In another sparring session I was feeling good on my back, and was working for a scissor sweep from open guard (not spider). We got close to another pair sparring, "carefull guys, mind moving" they asked. "Alright, no sweat" I say as I pull off the best scissor sweep of my life, complete with a lovely mat slapping sound of his back. The timing was immaculate but I was to chuffed with it to focus on how I actually did it that well.

Everyone seems to have their "go to" moves, which I guess characterises their game. But how much point is their in doing this at white belt level?. Forgetting competitions. From what Ive hard and read, we should be focusing on learning all the basics and getting a good level of competency from all positions. I think its ego rearing its ugly head...subtly. Our "go to" moves reward us with a higher percentage of success, which is why we end up using them more and subsequently improving them. But perhaps at the cost of other aspects. Im starting to come round to the idea that I should just try and get good at everything and leave the "game" refining aspects till when Im blue/purple. I think everything will come naturally following this route and will allow a more flexible game plan in comps as well.

Things learnt:

Scrambling is fun but I need to stop mounting people facing the wrong way
Watch out for elbows
Tap early
Think less, train more
Ice is good
Destroy ego, and try focus on my weaknesses not my strengths. Or atleast use my strengths to help my weaknesses.

Do more of this:

In case you cant tell, thats listening to good advice.

1 comment:

Philpot Lane said...

>> Everyone seems to have their "go to" moves, which I guess characterises their game.

It's because we're sparring "winner stays on" most of the time in class. One mistake and you're at the back of the queue waiting for your next go. Much better to spar for 3 to 5 minutes continuously and try different techniques out which may or may not work.