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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

18 November 2008

18/11/2008 - Salsa

Class #6

Warwick Salsa (Salsa), Billy, University of Warwick, Coventry, UK - 18/11/2008

In terms of technique, this was exactly the same as last week, which is great. My main difficulty with the class up until now has been the rapid sequence of moves, so I for one was more than happy to keep going over the previous lesson's content. Billy went at a steady pace, breaking it down step-by-step.

Things of note were turning your hand after the cross-body lead, so that when your partner steps out to the side, you aren't twisting their arm. Instead, swivel your hand, meaning you're gripping underneath rather than to the side. Also, when you're spinning out your partner, nudge them with your shoulder to add momentum (though obviously don't ram them: just use it to set up the spin).

The room was rather cramped, as pretty much everyone has now moved up from the beginners to post-beginner. However, that's now getting jammed, because there is no intermediate class to move onto next: intermediate has been replaced by a choreography class. In effect, that means there's a small beginner class, a small choreography class, and a huge post-beginner class. Hopefully those splits will be rejigged at some point, as it was difficult to dance properly with the space constraints, especially when spinning out your partner.

After class, a group of us headed out to Brazil Night at the union, in what used to be Grumpy John's, now punningly called Tempo. Unlike the last social at Latin Night, there was a good turn-out, though not too much of a chance to chat (especially as its quite loud in there). Before the dancing got underway, there were a whole bunch of demonstrations, kicking off with some kind of dance step: no idea what, as I couldn't see through the mass of students.

Didn't need to see for the next one, as that was the Drumming Society, and then finally the Capoeira group. This seems to have got much more organised compared to when I tried it out six years ago, when the instructor only had two years experience. Now, he's been replaced by (I assume) a professional teacher who knows his stuff (though I could only see the odd flailing limb passing overhead from my limited vantage point).

Clearly I'd also managed to get tipsy by that point, as I was happily babbling about BJJ to him in the toilet, where the capoeira people were getting ready. I'd overheard him mention something about jiu-jitsu, but I think he's more into the MMA side of things (though he knew who I meant when I said Braulio).

The music wasn't salsa, but was enough to get in some dancing practice with my girlfriend, spinning her around the floor. I still need to work out how to signal what step I'm trying to do, because at the moment I'm just putting pressure on her arms, side and shoulders to indicate the next technique. Not very efficient, so hopefully we'll eventually either be taught what the proper system is, or work out something functional.

1 comment:

  1. Hi again, Slidey! I sent you a note a few days ago -- just gave you a shout-out on my own blog. I'm a professional artist and have found that drawing some positions has helped me figure them out, and I turned my drawing of a triangle choke into downloadable computer wallpaper. (This is how I justify writing about BJJ on my work website. It's art!)