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This website is about Brazilian jiu jitsu (BJJ). I'm a purple belt who started in 2006, teaching and training at Artemis BJJ in Bristol, UK. All content ©2004-2016 Can Sönmez

09 August 2007

09/08/2007 - BJJ (Beginners)

Class #80



Roger Gracie Academy (BJJ), Maurição Gomes, London, UK - 09/08/2007Beginners

I was considering skipping the beginners, but decided that I didn’t feel too terrible after sparring so could handle another 45 minutes of training. After going through the arm throw (of which I only caught the tail end, having picked the wrong moment to pop to the toilet), we moved onto techniques from knee on belly.

First, Maurição showed the armbar from knee on belly, although I’m not quite sure I understood it correctly. As far as I can tell, popping up to knee on belly, you drag their arm up, then bring your leg over and fall back. Making sure you pull that arm right up is important, as otherwise they can slip their elbow down and escape.

That was followed by a sliding choke from knee on belly (at least I think that’s the right term). I was a little confused initially, as I thought it would be the same set up as for the usual cross choke, but hand positioning is a little different. Assuming I haven’t mixed up the hands, your bottom arm goes in first, gripping palm out instead of the usual palm in. You then feed in your other hand palm in, pressing the forearm firmly into their neck, driving your elbow floorwards to increase the pressure. Finally, sprawl back from knee on belly, drop your upper body right down, then pull with your bottom hand and lean on your forearm. That should swiftly result in a choke: suffice to say, drilling wasn’t a whole lot of fun when you’re on the receiving end!

While we were doing this, Oli also demonstrated how to do a similar choke from side control (as I’d asked if this only works from knee on belly). The grip is similar, but as you don’t have the same space, you bring your near arm right up under their near side and grab high on their gi. Then your forearm crushes into their neck as before, using the other hand to anchor the choke.

To finish off before sparring, Maurição went through the Americana from knee on belly. Once you’ve got the wrist to the floor and fed your other hand past their elbow and into position, bring your far leg up over their head, raise them up and pivot on their elbow for the kimura. Not sure if you move back into side control for this: will have to check next time.

Sparring was from side control, for which I went with a guy called Frank, who I haven’t seen before. He’s apparently been going for two months, and as happened last time, I was being rolled over from the top due to putting my weight too far forward. Shifting, I managed to maintain side control, but not really do anything with it.

Underneath I had a little more success, swivelling back to guard or half-guard a few times, but still not as smooth as I’d like. Frank was expending a lot of energy, which enabled him to get into position a few times, but generally he was powering upwards or trying to shove his knee through without making space first. Although I’m pretty crap from side control, I think I was able to give a few tips that were hopefully of use (like bridging, getting the elbow out of the way for the knee, pushing the legs to one side etc).

At the end of sparring turned out there was still time for another technique, and a very useful one at that. This was a basic half guard to closed guard transition. Having trapped them in your half guard, grab the back of their gi with your left hand and pull them down. With your right hand, grab their same side knee and drag it towards you. Adjust you half guard so that you can get a leg underneath their other knee, use that to lift them right up, then drop them down into your full guard.

After class finished, we were treated to yet another handy bit of instruction, this time in regards to the standing tailbone break. I haven’t had much of a chance to use this, but Maurição answered Diccon’s question about the technique by showing how you raise your bottom up high, turn your foot in to get in position, then drop back and drive a knee into their tailbone, opening their guard. That slight turn of the foot seemed to be of considerable help in targeting the right spot, which is the problem I’ve had when drilling this.

I’m off the Wales next week, so won’t be about on the Thursday. Therefore I need to try and make the Tuesday, which I’ve been avoiding because it’s the extremely knackering sparring class. No excuses now, as I’ll surely be well enough by next week: even if not, can at least make the Tuesday beginners class.

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