805BJJ Class 89: wall work, scissor sweep, knee push sweep, rolling

January 9th, 2018

Back at it on a rainy Tuesday morning. We got an epic warmup session where we had to go all the way down the new long mat. Unfortunately, it narrows at the end so you need to steer and be aware of your surroundings down there.

Coach Mark started us off by showing us how to use the wall for pressure and takedowns. Turn your opponent to put their back into the wall, then press them with your shoulder and head in their torso. Control the hand on the side you’re facing. Get comfortable switching directions, like shoulder pummeling. When it comes time for the takedown, grip your hands together right under their crotch, lift their pelvis while pressing them to the wall, then when you relieve the pressure they go down and you proceed to knee-on-belly. I always got my legs jumbled and had to do a little dance to get into ground position.

Greggo taught the scissor sweep next. Use your legs and whatever grips you can get to break posture. Lift their gi and get a cross grip on the label. Control their arm on the grip side. Squeeze your knees together as you hip out away from your grip/armhold, and slide your knee across their chest toward the grip. Use the grip-side leg to trip them as you pull them into your knee and tip them over.

If they have a wide base and you can’t scissor them over, cock your bottom foot back and use it to push their knee out. Use your top leg as a hook across their body to keep them from re-guarding and also to help you pull yourself on top of them for the mount.

Then I rolled. We started in guard. I got passed a lot. I tapped just about every roll. Learned a bunch though, I think. Didn’t get injured. Success!

805BJJ Class 88: new studio, half guard sweeps, rolling

January 6th, 2018

First day of training in the new year! They’ve opened up the mat by removing the back room walls, so it’s continuous mat all the way back now, punctuated only by the heavy bag pillars. They keep one heavy bag by the posts, as sort of a pad and a visual cue. It was also very very dirty. I swept up the small back part of the mat, and warmed up before class.

Class started with a nice warmup. Then we did some half guard stuff. Basics are to block the cross face with your frame, and establish the knee shield. From there, slip that top hand to get the underhook as you give up the knee shield. Dive your head down to the belt as you reach your underhook over their back and pull them down, forcing them to put their hands on the mat. From there, our first technique was the OG sweep, where you reach your bottom hand through and grab their far side foot or shin from underneath. Switch your feet so you can lift their trapped foot with your outside foot, and that lets you get your bottom leg out. Get to your knees and push them over that far side foot that you’re still holding to prevent them from basing out.

The second technique started the same way, but in that scenario you’re unable to reach under and grab the foot. So instead you push the far side knee out, grip the pants, and when they try to recover their interrupted base, you hip into them and use the knee grip to lift it as you roll them over you.

Then we rolled. I started with Matt, and I taught him stuff. He showed off his collar grip frame with his fist in my neck, which made it very difficult for me to do anything at all.

Next I rolled with Colt, who’s recovering his back. Good roll. After that we didn’t have partners so we just talked for the final round.

Pathfinder 4

December 13th, 2017

Got together at Greg’s place to finish up our first Pathfinder campaign. The guys charmed the shock troops, took out the chief, and hit 2nd level.

805BJJ Class 87: whizzer reflex and control, rolling

December 5th, 2017

Coach Mark AND Coach Greggo showed up for this one. Greggo warmed us up, and Mark taught us some stuff to do with a whizzer, like pushing the head down and figure-4 gripping while you pop their head down and roll them over onto their shoulder, then get on top. Another thing was to pull them over onto their side and then hip heist over into side control. The very basic move is just to sprawl heavy on the whizzer and use it to take them down and get on top.

Then we rolled for 40 minutes. I rolled with Trevor first. I let him do the move of the day and get on top, then recovered half guard, swept him, passed to side control, and laid on top of him for a minute fishing for his arms.

Second round I went with Priscilla, and I taught her how to get out from under side control. First by recovering guard (hip out, leg through, wrap up guard) and second by rolling them over. She really liked that one.

After that I rolled with Chris, and he submitted me twice with arm locks.

Next was Carlo, who I survived against.

Last was purple belt Joe, who was taking a around off due to exhaustion. I talked to him about stuff, and the next round he was still tired so I asked him to teach me something. He taught me a way to start in someone’s closed guard that makes it really hard for them to close the guard. Combat base, knee up in front, and elbows tight beside the vertical shin. He also showed me how to do a guard break by just pushing the hips while scooting back. He also briefly illustrated a couple open guard passes that are dead simple – grip inside the knee and the lapel; push the knee out while pulling the lapel and they rotate on their butt. If they resist that, you can turn them the other way by crossing your arms with the push and pull. Easy!

Krav Maga Class 122: shoulder tag, thai pads, back kick, choke review

December 2nd, 2017

Brandon’s Saturday morning class. I bought a new tshirt from Christian and was late to the warmup, and it was great!

We did some shoulder tag and the usual warmup calisthenics. I paired up with Daniel (the newish guy) and we got thai pads and went at it. I really need to work on my hip flexibility.

Then we did back kicks on the kick shield. After some warming up, we followed them up with combatives.

At the end, we briefly reviewed level 1 chokes and stuff before class ended.

805BJJ Class 86: half guard kimura

November 30th, 2017

Greggo’s pre-competition Thursday morning class started early and informally with discussions and stretching. Then we did the normal running around before shrimping and scooting and rolling across the mats. Then we learned some stuff from the half guard with a hook instead of a knee shield. We used the kimura grip from half guard to sweep and I can’t remember the rest.

Krav Maga Class 121: shoulder tag, kicking and kick combos

November 25th, 2017

Curtis taught this Saturday morning class, and he was not kind.

We started with the NASCAR warmup, then lunges/bearcrawl/crabwalks across the mat, then shoulder tag and aerobics in a circuit, then stretch with more aerobics afterward.

We then paired up and got a tombstone pad for our group of 3 (me, Dave, and Eric). We started kicking the pad, and immediately Eric tapped out due to a leg injury. So it was just me and Dave. We did groin kick, then round kick, then front/side/back kicks, then question mark kicks. Then we did combos. Several rounds, with aerobics at the end of the striking to make sure we were tired.

805BJJ Class 85: lasso guard sweep and omoplata, rolling

November 21st, 2017

Greggo’s Tuesday morning. Last class before Thanksgiving. I felt mostly okay going into this one. The rib is holding up. I might be at 90%. We had a bunch of students who don’t normally train during the day, but school’s out for Thanksgiving for some folks so we even had some kids in the class. Warmup was extended, with the addition of butt scoots and drop steps. The drop steps wrecked my big toes. I think I’m done with those.

Greggo showed the lasso guard, but kind of assumed we knew it and were familiar with it. I was not familiar with it. The first trick he showed was that if you let them pass away from your lasso, you can then use it to roll them over onto their back.

The omoplata was for use when they tried to pass farther out, giving you space to spin under and push their upper arm down with your leg. I had real trouble spinning under. TJ and Andrew were quick to give me advice about momentum and crunching my midsection to reduce friction on the mat.

Then we rolled.

My first roll was with coach Greggo. The rules were: start in open guard, and no submissions the first round. I did a couple good moves but then got confused when he slowed down. He got mount repeatedly and had to prompt me to upa. That was embarrassing. Looks like I was getting ahead of myself there.

Next I rolled with Phil. My open guard sucked.

Then I rolled with Erin. He effortlessly passed my open guard. I tried to get an anaconda choke on him but I couldn’t lock it properly and ended up squeezing his head. I let go.

Next I rolled with Carlo. He showed me a the cradle and we got stuck there. I called for a reset.

After that I rolled with Matt, and did okay until I completely ran out of gas with 45 seconds left. I mean, I wanted to lie down on the mat and let him kill me.

The last round I sat with Cody, who was a new guy and was totally exhausted and didn’t know ANYTHING about BJJ. I went over proper closed guard technique and showed him side control.

Krav Maga Class 120: shoulder tag, thai pads, knees, sparring

November 18th, 2017

Brandon’s Saturday morning class got going before I got on the mat. I was listening to TJ’s story about his arm, and how he’s going to need surgery but he can’t get it now because he’s stabilizing his workplace in a time of turbulence and chaos. I got into jumping jacks, and what seemed like a very brief and easy warm up that included shoulder tag. Then we paired off into partners with thai pads, and I got paired with Ethan, who’s a tall skinny teen blue belt. He came into class with black jeans, a concert tshirt, and his iphone in his pocket. He wore MMA gloves and didn’t bring a mouth guard. His thai pad combinations were all straight punches, and he stood southpaw and insisted on reversing the order of right-only then left-only kicks after the punching combinations. I had to go very easy on the kicks because I would knock the pads into his face if I went very hard.

Next was knee strikes. He was very sloppy and didn’t put much pressure on me at all, and I was able to just walk away if I wanted to. I did once, just to see. I told him to get heavier and get that forearm up against me. At least his knee strikes were noticeable through the pad. Then it was my turn and I showed him what I meant. He was holding the pad away from his body, so I guess he was feeling those knees even though I was going fairly light and conserving energy. We drove each other across the mat and back with knee strikes, then we geared up for combat.

The first rounds of sparring was just one person attacking and the other defending. I got hit with a good upper cut when I was expecting a hook, so I learned from that. I also was reminded that slipping inside leaves your head exposed to power punches, so that’s a real bad idea.

Then we sparred 20% each side. Ethan and I landed some good shots on one another. Apparently I leave my body open a lot.

Next round was with Ivan, who was suffering from allergies. He kept me away with some good body kicks, which didn’t feel good. I didn’t do as bad as I usually do against him.

Then I sparred with Dave, who clinched and messed me up pretty good.

Last was Susan, who joined me in going very very light.

805BJJ Class 84: Arm bars from guard, mount, side control; rolling

November 16th, 2017

Greggo taught this Thursday morning class. I came after heading up to the Ventura County Office of Vital Records to get death certificates for my dad. My right lower rib was still tweaked from last week, so of course I was apprehensive going in.

Today’s class was all about the arm bar, and how to set it up from everywhere. Starting from closed guard, get the arm across the body and put your head on the side you’re pulling the arm to. Use your crossed ankles to springload your movement, swinging your leg around the head while you pull them down with your near leg. Clamp together on either side of their arm and down on the neck and back to finish.

From the mount, we did the basic pushup armbar. They’re pressing you up, you put your hands on their collarbone area in a way that one of their arms is between your arms. This is the arm you’ll attack. Push down on your CPR hold on their chest in order to lift your body and swing your legs around to the armbar position. Then remount and do it again and again for the drill.

Arm bar from side control on the near started with them turned away, just like the last 2 week’s lessons. Reach under and isolate it. Hold their head down while you bring your rear leg parallel and close to their body, and your upper leg over their head. You basically sit on their head to hold them down as you sit into position, then clamp both legs down and around the arm to finish.

Arm bar from side control on the far side involves getting the far arm wrapped around your neck. You can then lock it with your head-side arm, use it to lift them onto their side, step behind their belt, sit on their head, and squeeze your legs together on the arm as you pull back for the finish.

Then we rolled.

First I rolled with Phil. He started in bottom side control and locked up a kimura from the bottom. He showed me how to do it – grab the wrist with your hip framing hand, then dive over with your other hand to lock up the arm. He submitted me. Only one of the day who did!

Next I rolled with Dave. It was a wild, back-and-forth roll with lots of guard passes and recoveries and back takes and escapes. It was crazy. And fun!

Next was John, the old blue belt that Greggo finally convinced to get back on the mat. I promised him a light roll, but we got pretty competitive. I did express my reserve about doing a heavy baseball slide pass, but he said go for it. I did, and he swept me. Doh! I didn’t get him, he didn’t get me, and he survived. Barely.

Next was Carlo. I heard a story about him before class that he split Steve’s scalp open trying to swing his leg over for an arm bar. Anyway, he’s very dangerous for a 2 stripe white belt, because he’s also a Krav Maga instructor. He started on top of me in side control and put too much weight on me so I rolled him over and got on top. He recovered guard, and I tried to stay safe but eventually he went for an arm. I defended and he transitioned to a triangle, which I also defended and used it to pass to side control as the round ended.

Last round was Phil again, and I asked for more pointers on the kimura from bottom side control. It was leisurely and instructive, and I survived for the lineup and picture time!