BJJ Globetrotter Camp (Sportoase Leuven), Gareth McNamara, Leuven, Belgium, 13/08/2015
I am not a fan of throws and even less a fan of drilling them. However, I was keen to train as much as possible in the one day I had: this was the only other gi class. Good for me anyway, as I should force myself to do takedowns more often. Gareth McNamara was a decent teacher, which made things less onerous. First up was a grip break into an arm drag. Use that to get behind them, still retaining control of the sleeve.
Grab their belt near their far hip, then do a sort of one-legged squat and stick your non-squatting leg behind them. You can then drop to the mat, rolling them over your leg. As you roll them over, yank on the belt grip and push on the sleeve grip, to prevent them turning away to try and escape. I kept getting my hand squashed underneath, a common problem from what I could gather. Then again, Conor didn't have any problems avoiding his hand getting trapped: perhaps I need to commit to it more, or create more momentum?
There is also an option for throwing off a clinch. Get an over-under grip (one arm underhooking, the other over the top of their arm). Push into them, then when they push back, drop and roll them over into side control. I don't think I was doing this technique correctly, as while I got Conor down and it felt smooth (thanks to that underhook), I ended in scarf hold. Still, got them on the ground in what seemed like a natural motion, so that's good. I think I was missing a trip or something?
The final one I remember (there were a lot of techniques, as McNamara teaches quickly) was a sumi gaeshi (I think?) from a single leg. They go for a single, you grab their belt by their lower back. Make sure their head on inside, then drop underneath them and flick your leg. They should ideally land next to you, vulnerable to an easy north-south transition. You can also stay close to them and roll backwards into mount, which is what Conor did.
I enjoyed the training at the camp, which runs for a lot longer than the one day I attended. There were classes almost all week. By Thursday, everybody else had already had a chance to meet, chat and get to know each other: it was lucky for me that I already knew Conor (among a few other people, but mostly black belts who were teaching, like Oli Geddes), or getting a partner for each session would have been a little more awkward.
Then again, I hadn't met Stacey before, who kindly partnered me in the first class. I'm not very good at grabbing training partners (one of the reasons I like pairing people up when I teach, saves any of that potential awkwardness for fellow timid introverts). I think to get the most out of the camp, I need to bring a team over and stay the whole week, so that's what I'm planning to do next year. There's still lots I'd like to see in Belgium, and I know my girlfriend is interested in places like Bruges.
I'll therefore make a longer trip of it in 2016, start off in Bruges with her, then go to Leuven for the camp, maybe with some more time in Brussels. It would be cool to visit Antwerp too, as IIRC there are some excellent art galleries there too, with Ghent and Oostende as alternative/additional options for the same reason. On this trip, Brussels was my next stop, for many, many hours of art galleries. I'll have the write up for that on here shortly. :)
Pictures courtesy of Vara from BJJ Globetrotters