BJJ, advanced class

Class size was decent, and it was mostly more experienced guys. Although, they’re all a lot bigger than me. Warmup, then a couple of rolls.

I started with Justin. Don’t remember exactly what happened, but I was in something like twister side control (had to just go look that up. That’s what it looks like, anyway… ish…), and he grabbed over my back for my arm just like he always does. Usually I end up getting swept or losing him at that point; tonight, I realized I could roll toward his head and negate that arm. It was a serious everything-stopped light bulb moment; my mouth probably even fell open. As usual, too, he’d paused to let me think, so I had time to have this whole conversation in my head. Moved through the roll, his arm fell off, I ended in normal side control, and he said, “Good.” Yay!

He plays a very open guard most of the time, going for spider guard a lot, and that made it hard for me to get in and get position and pressure. I did remember my goals. (Well, except breathing. Rats.) I’d added “work standing guard pass” for this evening, and I did remember to try it once with Justin when he pulled for spider guard. Didn’t do me much good, though; he had me wrapped back up a second later.

Next roll was with another guy who kept me smashed down most of the time trying to pass my guard. At one point, though, while trying to pass, he put himself in position for a triangle. Another light-bulb moment as I stared at my leg and realized that he’d handed me a triangle. So I grabbed my shin and pulled it in. I ended up with an open guard a lot with him, too, and so concentrated on working with that. (Usually, I don’t work open guard because the guys just overpower my legs with their arms and pass. Noticed that staying mobile on my hips seemed to give him some trouble with the push-aside pass.)

Then we drilled a half-guard escape.

Rolling again. I got Justin again. He kept catching me in half-guard so I could try that pass. Did it once, and then he started giving me trouble when I tried to do it. Again mostly tried to get in on that open guard to work position and pressure; it’s hard to do! Did something in that round that earned another “Good!”, but I don’t remember what it was. I did realize after class that he was letting me work from the top most of both rounds, which I get little of. Thanks. 🙂

Next roll was with a guy who wasn’t too smashy. Spent that roll mostly on the bottom, working on getting out of side control and back to guard. He tried for an Americano from side control at one point, but leaned too far forward and lost pressure on me, so I could turn in to it a bit; we stayed there a while until he switched to mount and I got my arm out. Afterward, he said I was tricky and flexible. I’ll take that as a compliment. 😉

Mom still isn’t happy, but she’s not wigging out too much tonight. Dad apparently talked to her today and calmed her down. She’d still rather I quit all my martial arts (TKD is now on the chopping block, too), get married, and produce grandchildren than get my nose smashed in. I said I’ll start looking for an eligible plastic surgeon. She said that wasn’t funny, but she did laugh a little.

It’s not helping that many of her friends are becoming grandparents; their kids — my and my sister’s friends — are getting married and having kids. I think she’s feeling a bit left out. (I told her she could get a puppy; she called not funny again, but did laugh again, too.)

Come to think of it, I’m feeling left out, too: it’s my friends who are married and having kids. I always thought I’d find the right guy in college, get married right after, etc. But that hasn’t happened the way I pictured it. I’m five years out from college and have been on, er, 3 dates (?) since college. And two of those were blind dates. I’d guess that’s one reason I feel like I can jump in to something like BJJ — I don’t have an active social life or a significant other who disapproves. It’s there, I like it, and I have the lifestyle right now that fits it. So I’m going for it. Sometimes I feel as if I’m missing out on what everyone else has, but usually I don’t.


5 thoughts on “BJJ, advanced class

  1. My girlfriend is always telling me that statistics show the two happiest groups of people on the planet are single women and married men. Not sure what statistics these are, exactly (‘happiness’ seems like a tough thing to quantify), but interesting if true: would seem to indicate men are crap on their own, while women do just fine. 😉

  2. I wish I could envision that half guard escape better.
    “The we drilled a half-guard escape: walk your trapped leg up, heel-to-toe, until your shin is vertical; turn and smash their chin while pushing up on your toes, switching your hips, and sliding the trapped leg’s knee to the ground on the other side. Use your free foot, if needed, to pull out your trapped leg; then slide up to side control.”

    I’m not even sure how you could get your shin vertical… hmmm. Open to anything further you might be able to say about that. Thanks

  3. @Lynn: Sorry, I think I rushed through that explanation the first time. Try this:

    You may first need to drop your weight on to your other (free) leg so you can move your hips a bit. (If your hips are facing the ground/into their hips, you won’t be able to get your foot on the ground.) Do the chin-smash, with shoulder pressure, if you feel you’re losing control of them and to distract them from your legs. Open your hips and turn your leg until you can get that trapped foot on the ground.

    They should be sufficiently trapped there that you can turn and start working on getting the foot to the ground and walking your foot up. As you walk your foot up, you’ll start driving in to their legs and maybe even picking their legs up as you go. Once the shin is vertical, be sure to get your knee out from under theirs, using your lower hand if needed.

    Drive further into their shoulder to pull weight off your hips. Then take the knee you just freed and drive it across their hips and back under your own body to the mat. If that didn’t free you entirely from their half-guard, you can use the free foot to trap their leg (block the knee/foot over thigh) so you can get out.

    Let me know if you still have any questions.

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