Artemis BJJ (MYGYM Bristol), Open Mat, Bristol, UK - 14/06/2015
More competition prep today, with everyone doing really well. It was good to get in more practice on my coaching: I need to think of the best way to be encouraging when the same piece of advice continues to apply. Just repeating it over and over is going to get frustrating, so at present I'm falling back on general conceptual points. Those also have the advantage of being easy to understand, meaning they are more likely to get through the haze of adrenaline. E.g., "elbows in", "head control", "stay on your toes", "breathe" etc. I've been asking after every 'match' what bits were useful and what weren't, modifying what I say based on that.
In terms of my own training, I got in some more specific sparring from closed guard. I made sure to properly limit it to closed guard: last time we got carried away and kept going in other positions. Underneath, I'm looking for the shoulder clamp, but still not having too much success at progressing into a technique with it. I'm not controlling their underhooked arm well enough: I don't think I drove the knife of my hand into the shoulder like I should have done, or flared the elbow properly.
However, my training partner mentioned a good point. A few times, he noticed that while I was concentrating on one shoulder, I actually had my leg in a pretty good position by the other arm. So, worth trying for omoplata and the like on that side too. I used the deep collar grip more, to break their posture, though I'm still not trying for the choke enough. I was also able to combine it with the sit-up sweep, reaching through to pull their arm away to complete the roll.
On top, I wanted to try something I'd watched on the excellent BJJ Library earlier today. It's a video I saved to my favourites a while back, featuring Gracie Tijuca instructor Vini Aieta going through some old school posture for passing the guard. His approach in that video reminded me (as I am so often reminded) of jnp's Control Point Framework, because it highlights the importance of controlling the hips with your own hips. Aieta leans into his opponent, raising up in the guard, pressing his hips into theirs. He looks for the opportunity to then make space to drive a knee through and pass, or shoot an arm under and pass that way.
I'm sure I'm missing a lot of details (and I have a significant experience advantage over all my regular training partners), but it worked well in sparring. However, I did seem to use a lot of energy, so that would be the main part where I'm missing details (given that Aieta isn't some 20 year old super athlete, he's a veteran instructor in his late '40s. I assume it therefore can't be a big strength move). There was a comparable video with Fabio Santos in another bit of the site: I love how BJJ Library brings in these more mature people to teach too, rather than just Johnny Currentworldchamp. :D