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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

01 September 2010

01/09/2010 - BJJ (Basics)

Class #337
Gracie Barra Birmingham, (BJJ), Dave Iverson, Birmingham, UK – 01/09/2010

I had an appointment that ran over last night, so couldn’t make it to my usual Tuesday basics class. So instead, as I have a half-day today, I’ll be doubling up the Wednesday class. Most likely I’ll be doing that for the next few weeks too, doubling up on Monday classes. I’ll be leaving Leamington around the end of the month, after which I’ll be at home for a while (which means I can go back to training with Kev at RGA Wycombe, which should be cool). The eventual goal is to head to Bristol, where it seems the main choice for training is Pedro Bessa. No idea how long that will take though: might be as late as next year, but we’ll see. Bristol also has the advantage that Donal from GB Brum is there already, and apparently has mats at his place for rolling, which sounds awesome.

Anyway, class tonight was more on De La Riva, going back to the initial couple of sweeps we did back at the beginning of this round of classes. For the first technique (where you pull them over your leg with their lapel) Dave added in two useful details on the foot grip, where he said it depended on if they were gunning for passing with the knee out, or driving it in and across. If they go to turn it out, grab the heel. If they try to drive it across, grab their pant leg.

Dave then moved on to the second sweep, where you spin underneath them and loop their other leg, then roll to come out on top. It was that passing element once you’re on top that was especially good this time round, as Dave added in plenty of details. He was also very helpful when I called him over to check I was doing it properly, walking me through the technique a couple of times, as well as demonstrating it again himself.

As you come on top, make sure you’re sprawled on their leg, so they can’t move into a triangle. You have your same side arm wrapped under that squashed leg, while your free arm is hooked around their other leg. Your head position is also important: this is by that other leg, facing the floor rather than looking side ways, clamped tight.

To pass, punch the arm you have under their trapped leg towards them, twisting so you drive your shoulder into them, and also bring your back leg over in a big circle. There is no need to rush this, as you can use slow, steady pressure to pass. Ideally, you’ll be driving all your weight into your shoulder, which will focus the force into their stomach.

Unfortunately there wasn’t a chance to write up much in the way of notes, as there wasn’t any pause between the classes, as I’d hoped, or a chance to sit out the warm-up of the second one. Instead, I was scribbling a couple of things down while going to get my gumshield in the next class, or when we headed over to drink water. I’ll see what its like on Monday, but might have to continue splitting the two classes across the week if I’m not able to take any decent notes.

Then again, because we did so much drilling today in the basics, that really helped keep the details in my mind. In fact, that drilling was so extensive that it took up the rest of the lesson: there wasn’t any sparring in the basics today. So, if Monday is like that, shouldn’t be a problem.

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