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This website is about Brazilian jiu jitsu (BJJ). I'm a black belt who started in 2006, teaching and training at Artemis BJJ in Bristol, UK. All content ©Can Sönmez

30 May 2006

30/05/2006 - ZSK

University of Warwick Zhuan Shu Kuan (ZSK), Rod Richardson (in Bali, so Charles took the class), Coventry, UK – 30/05/2006

This time round it wasn’t Ste, but another senior grade (though still less than me; I wimped out of taking class due to injury), Charles. Kicking off with the usual running round warm-up followed by stretches, it was yet again the exact same pattern as last week. Charles then added on a few extra sets of press-ups, sit-ups, squat thrusts and leg-raisers, which were really starting to get to my abs as I was exchanging every exercise that required my left arm for sit-ups.

Once we’d gone through the usual, Charles decided he wanted to play with tornado kicks. So, he broke it down – somewhat laboriously – into kick, then kick and turn, then kick turn kick, at long last getting to the actual tornado kick itself. This was delayed even further by doing first doing each motion on the count before even getting to stringing together the preparatory moves. Still, always fun to fling yourself through the air, though my left hip protested slightly after about the eleventh time I gyrated through space.

Next up was padwork, beginning with low kicks to the thigh. This always hurts, but fortunately I wasn’t with a macho prick, I was with Ste, so he was happy to tone it down when my face started to display evidence of wimpy-ness. This moved on to knees, then a knee and turning knee combo (or whatever the knee to the side is called), and finally a jumping knee. This was considerably more fun than I thought it would be, though there is no way in hell I’d ever throw a flying knee in sparring; almost certainly miss or simply get side-stepped and smacked in the groin.

Class finished with a ‘self-defence’ section, which instantly switches my brain to ‘ignore’. Even so, I did manage to get a little entertainment out of it, as well as a reminder that I’m still injured. There was some move that involved hyper-extending the elbow using the shoulder after a ridiculous block. I flapped my arm against Ste’s, then swivelled and pulled his arm onto my left shoulder. Instant pain resulted, but unfortunately the pain was focused in my left shoulder, not Ste’s elbow. So that was clearly a no-no. This was followed by some wristy thing, which for some reason Ste decided to push a little further. I spun out of it, ending up on the floor, and decided I’d try and pull guard. Not knowing how to pull guard whilst on the floor, I ended up sitting there with my legs around the vertical Ste, who eventually fell over – no idea if I had anything to do with his descent. That resulted in eventually getting hold of eachothers legs – with Charles standing over us making some inane ‘homosexual’ commentary (not a convert to MMA, unfortunately) – while I finally attempted a heel hook. Ste tapped, but I think it had more to do with the hard wooden floor as opposed to my sloppy technique.

Rod’s back next week, so I imagine padwork will continue to be the mainstay, with a quick run-through of compulsory movements. While in a sense this makes for somewhat dull reading (if there is anyone reading this), I am glad that my familiarity with the class and instructor means I can feel relaxed about training around an injury; I wouldn’t get the same lee-way anywhere else.

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