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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

26 September 2013

26/09/2013 - BJJ at Hit Fit with Dónal

Class #525
Hit Fit, (BJJ), Dónal Carmody, Bristol, UK - 26/09/2013

Some of you might remember Oxford University PhD student Chris Kavanagh's BJJ survey, who I mentioned in a post last year. Excitingly (well, for BJJ and data geeks like me), the results are now starting to come out! Here's a brief discussion of the first post from Chris, which focuses on demographics.

Since I last popped down a few weeks ago, Dónal's sessions at Hit Fit have moved to Thursdays, at the new time of 19:00-20:00.

Dónal started with the basic kneeling guard break, using a simplified version of the private lesson he taught me in August. That was followed by another technique Dónal has covered in a private with me, this time the windscreen wiper sweep from earlier in August.

Specific sparring was from guard. On top, I continued to focus on staying up on my toes, trying to maintain good guard posture and also break their grips. That does depend on how quickly they can react though, plus I wasn't doing a good job of then controlling their sleeve off the grip break. I tend to feel vulnerable when I look to break grips rather than maintain posture, but that could just be an issue with base. The one handed y-grip break could help with that, as long as I don't over-extend.

Underneath, I tried to get into the gi tail grip, but generally they were making that tough by posturing up and leaning back, due to my efforts to pull them in closer. However, as they are leaning backwards, that means I can shift into a sit-up sweep, which remains a useful go-to. The reverse is probably true as well, meaning that if I try to push them backwards, they might drive me back down, whereupon I can hopefully lock up the gi grip more effectively. Something to practice.

Sparring with Dónal, things were obviously rather more difficult given he is much better than I am, even if he was taking it easy (as he was still looking around at the rest of the class while sparring with me). Again I aimed to stay in good posture and keep driving forward, but was perhaps overly hesitant. I looked to slip over the leg if the opportunity presented itself, though that only worked once. I keep getting stuck on the legs and feet, which are hooking under my legs trying to lift and off-balance. That makes me wonder if I should I be pausing and disentangling before driving forwards (though there's the concurrent problem I have with not fully committing to a technique).

Great stuff as always: I particularly enjoy the atmosphere. It's really good to have an opportunity to regularly train in Dónal's classes again.

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