Tuesday, March 26, 2013

March 25th (Chasing the High)

I had a back and forth internal argument Sunday and Monday.  I'm trying to stick to my guns and stay away from Jiu-Jitsu for a while.  I have an appointment with the orthopedist next Tuesday to figure out what's going on with my knees.  I feel pretty good right now although I can still feel the injury sometimes. 

Too many thoughts go through my head like, "what if I had taken a break right away after the first injury, would I be fine now?", "Will I take this time off and then just hurt it again?", "Will my knee ever be the same?" 

Until recently I have been ignoring Fuji's jabs about me having an addictive personality.  Not so long ago he, Greg, and I we were comparing Jiu-Jitsu to addiction to drugs and chasing a high (which is hearsay for me as I don't know what that is really like).  We all agreed that unlike drugs there isn't really a tolerance built up to where the high is more difficult to reach.  In fact it seems like the highs get better as you progress.  However, like drugs there is a withdrawal factor which I am experiencing now. 

I will still roll with my Hapkido group once or twice a week which is good.  I can control the pace of the class and take it pretty easy.  That subsides some of the feelings of emptiness and fulfillment (I'm kidding, kind of).

Monday, March 18, 2013

March 17th - No Gi

I started off yesterday already a little sore.  On Saturday, I had rolled with my Hapkido group in the morning and then again in the afternoon with Bill, the corrections trainer.  Plus I also stood in a bar for several hours watching the UFC later that night.  I probably would have skipped but both Bauer and Bill had said that he was going to try to make it to class, so I thought I should go.  Bauer didn't show up unfortunately.

Per my request Ray had us work on breaking the turtle position and ended up having us each teach a method.  I taught kind of a bowl over technique grabbing the far arm and ankle and then pushing with head and chest to put them into side control.  Adam taught a better way that I will probably use in the future that puts a pretty mean crossface on while moving around their head.  We did a few others that I was familiar with and Jerad obviously chose to teach the darce.

We trained from the position after that with 1 and 2 minute rounds, then we finished with up/down/out with guard passing.  I took it pretty easy and kept my left leg away from danger for the most part.  I watched Ray and Jerad roll a few times impressively.  I ended up not rolling, didn't want to chance injury.  Hopefully I'll be able to stop procrastinating and finally make the appointment to see the orthopedist. 

Monday, March 11, 2013

March 8th - Open Mat (Big Mistake)

I was feeling so good, that I decided to go to open mat last Friday.  I also wanted to work off some of the Valentino's buffet that I had had for lunch.  I had been avoiding Friday open mat to prevent further injury and apparently for good reason.

I had some good rolls with Jerad and Ray.  I was a little more active than usual with Jerad, which he complimented me on.  I did however spend a lot of time defending from the bottom until he submitted me with a arm triangle choke.  Ray was a little more playful with me and let me put him into bad positions for a little while.  I had him in back mount but decided not to try to put my hooks in, because every time he'll submit me with an ankle lock easily.  He ended up escaping and then attacking me from mount.  He finished me in the same arm triangle choke as Jerad so I must be opening myself up for that.

Then I rolled with Mike and I went too hard.  I think I would have been fine if I wouldn't have stood up with him.  We fought for quite a while and I think he submitted me with an ankle lock from 50/50.  On our second roll he pulled guard and kind of sat on my leg locking my knees out.  Then when we came down I felt the sharp pain that comes with my hurt knee.  I don't blame Mike, it's my fault as I knew the risks. 

How frustrating.  The bright side is I feel like I'm bouncing back quicker than previously, I think the stretching and weights are helping.  Probably the worst part of all of this is that this is my annual bachelor week and I was hoping to up my training.  Now I'm not sure if I'll be able to do much at all.

Friday, March 8, 2013

March 7th - Gi

Another excellent time was had at Jiu-Jitsu yesterday.  Conan was at the helm with the theme of butterfly guard stuff.  We started off with the basic sweep and then moved on to some of the things Conan likes from there.  The double unders lock, the double shoulder lock, the grab their belt and kick them straight over into mount thing.  The last one I had some difficulty with as you need some resistance from your partner and if you don't get any you just kind of sit there without any leverage.  We the did some single butterfly stuff that Conan likes to play.  We did an armlock and a sweep from there.  This seemed pretty hard on everyone's shoulders and took some flexibility to not tap too soon in some cases.  I skipped out on the last technique (shin sweep) as it takes.

During open mat I had one hell of a roll with Chris.  While Chris has only been back in training for a very short time he's very difficult to deal with.  He had me in a couple things and dominated a lot of the fight from north/south.  I also had my moments as I took his back briefly and swept him once and almost had an armbar.  He had to leave early so we left it at a stalemate but I was panting like a dog after that.

Will and I rolled a little more playfully.  I am not as worried about him over powering me but he does have some tricks up his sleeve.  In the end I set up an omma plata in my usual way and he tried to roll and snatch my arm and get me into an omma plata.  Then I had to escape his triangle attempt just in time for Conan to tell us to line up.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

March 4th - Gi (Get your knee off me, Fuji)

Jerad warmed us up with some of the usual stuff until Greg could take over.  I helped a new guy out with the shrimping and rolls the best I could.  The focus of class was on attacking from knee on belly.  We started with the baseball bat choke which was surprising since it seems like we usually start with farside armbar when this class is taught.  The key thing that I didn't use before with this technique was the knee slide over their arm to take away their defense.  From there if they defended higher our next response was to kick over into armbar.  We worked that for quite a while and I had some trouble at first bringing my foot across their body if they were able to lock their hands up.

We did the up/down/out drill starting from side control with the intent of going to knee on belly and then submitting.  I didn't have much success from the top.  Everyone was hypervigilent of the knee so just getting their was difficult in itself.  Fuji destroyed my stomach twice when he was on top.  I didn't feel like there was any chance to escape and had to tap from the position rather than any actual submission.  I thought I was making some progress on Jerad but I think he was playing around letting people get pretty far before defending the position.

I rolled with Ken and Mike after class.  Ken has been very frustrating, he has been passing my guard pretty easily it seems just by circling around until I can't keep up.  I need to find an answer for that.  I was doing a good job with butterfly guard before that, but couldn't complete any sweep.  Once he passed, he had me pinned pretty well from side mount and then mount.  He submitted with an armbar. 

Mike and I had a good back and forth.  I had some trouble with his collar grip and I knee that I should have focused on getting it off but I wasn't sure how much effort I should focus on it.  More would be the answer.  It seemed like we spent equal time on top and bottom.  I almost had a back take close to the end but couldn't get a hold of his pants to keep him down.  He eventually got me in leg lock position and I tapped because it was my left knee and I didn't want to chance anything.  Jerad had some good points later on about guard passing, that I need to squat more instead of lean over and also to keep my elbow tight to my knee.  I'm getting back to my goal of improving my guard passing, the knee problems have been limiting progress here as of late.

Monday, March 4, 2013

March 3rd - No Gi

Ray had us do some single leg drilling and then half guard.  I worked with wrestler Jordan for the majority of the single leg part.  I notice I get a lot more winded working on this than when doing ground based stuff.  I felt pretty good about my head position and the technique in general.  I did have some stumbling blocks once I got the guy down.  I need to work on the leg drag a little more, Ray also gave me some pointers on how to prevent half guard and finish in side control.

We worked primarily from the lockdown in half guard, which I wasn't too happy about.  I've been doing a great job in rolling keeping my leg out of the lock down but it's impossible to do that when the other person is trying to practice that particular thing.  Everyone was cool with me asking them to take it easy on my left side.  Everything was good in the end.  We worked on underhooking, dog pawing, and taking that back.

During open mat I rolled with Jordan and we went over my limited knowledge of standing passes in no-gi.  I guess I have a few tricks.  We took turns playing guard or standing.  He gave me the compliment that he wanted to avoid my half guard, which I will accept.

Friday, March 1, 2013

February 28th - Gi

The theme of yesterday's class was defense against scarf hold or kesa gatame.  I kind of all around dislike this position.  If someone is good at it (Ray), it sucks to be on the bottom and it's very hard to get out of.  I am not good at it from the top and I will usually get my back taken or rolled over.  We worked on 3 or 4 different escapes that I was mostly familiar with as well as the basics of defending like trying to get your elbow to the floor below their thigh.

Greg took over close to the end and showed us another escape before separating us into groups to train with the position.  I went with Adam and Ray and they both gave me a hard time.  I even had to tap to Ray just maintaining the position because my jaw cramped up. 

I ended up not feeling very good about the class last night.  I've been trying to determine what caused this feeling and a couple of things came to mind.  I obviously got nowhere with this position so there was not even minor victory feeling.  Usually I at least have one of those.  The other factor is that I already don't like this position, but I recognize that I need to work on it to make it better, and that doesn't interest me that much.  I'd rather work on butterfly guard.