Submissions Spirits 2

Just to let you dudez know another perk of living in Japan… totally wicked awesome sweet DVD magazines with the latest shiznit from the world of BJJ and grappling.

Here is Submission Spirits volume 2.

I’m reading it now. Actually, I lie. I’m looking at the pictures and trying to figure out what all the squiggly lines mean. But I’m working my way through the DVD, which has Shinya Aoki, Eddie Bravo, Jacare, Drysdale, and a whole bunch of other cool stuff as well as some hardcore Japanese BJJ and grappling tourneys.

I’ll probably write more of a review with some more information when I get time to sift through it all, and I will definitely post some video clips from the DVD up here and you can be sure they will be EX-CLUUUU-SIVE.

Advertisements

BJJ 25th May

Taught a class on Sunday, and it went pretty good despite having to hop everywhere.

I chose the bow and arrow choke because I have been using it a lot lately and find that I’m able to work it from just about any position.

It ended up going really well, I taught it from the back, from side control, from the turtle, and even from guard.

I did a little boning up before I went courtesy of Lockflow and Aesopian.

One other blue belt came who is my sempai, has been there longer and is generally better than me. I offered for him to teach the techniques but he stood back and waved his hands, and I learnt a small lesson then, that the teacher doesn’t necessarily have to be the best guy in the room but he does have to be willing to stand up in front of everyone and take responsibility for things.

The guys sparred pretty hard.

Here is pro-Shooto fighter Sugi-pro playing possum with one of our other resident gaijins, Kevin.

And here he is slapping on a reverse triangle in a pro shooto match.

Tomokazu Yuasa (blue trunks) vs. Toshihiko Sugimoto
Get more pictures like this from SHERDOG.COM

Nino Schembri’s New Vid

Courtesy of Budo Videos blog

Nice production!

BJJ Class, May 24, 2008

So I hobbled along to BJJ last night to cover for my instructor who is in Tokyo getting his ass whupped in preparation for the Mundials.

I did get a few strange looks when I came into the dojo on crutches with my gi pants on and a cast sticking out of the bottom of them, but that was to be expected.

Friday nights for BJJ have been pretty quiet lately, so I just sat there and watched the Shooto guys go through a really intense exercise session. Then a couple of people rolled up for BJJ including my buddy Sam, which was cool. I really didn’t do anything other than keep an eye on the timing and lead the warmup. I did some pressups, situps and later chinups, but I realised I have to be careful not to work up much of a sweat otherwise my cast will get majorly funkalicious.

It was great to be back in the dojo, that’s for sure, and I quite enjoyed just sitting on the sidelines and watching, analaysing, yelling out the odd bit of advice in Japanese. I think I was yelling “Grab his lapel with your right hand” but I might have been saying “Your mother sucks donkey balls in hell, stupid-head”… we’ll never know.

That class was over and then a couple of drifters came in for the 10pm class, including one blue belt who is very tough. (But has no stamina… I remember him completely killerising me a few weeks ago, then five spars later, he had nothing left…) He was kind of teaching a few moves to a white belt so I just let him get on with it. The class was very relaxed, we messed around with some rubber guard stuff, I got some pointers on the triangle from the blue belt, and then I watched them spar.

I am really, really looking forward to when my foot heals and I can train again. It was quite frustrating to be there, in my uniform, watching people spar, and not be able to join in.

I had a good opportunity to watch how people roll though and I think this break will ultimately help my game. I could see so many times when people were just doing completely the wrong movements. Wrestling and fighting for some grip or some position when all they had to do was change direction or switch some minor thing and they could have got a sweep or a submission with half the effort.

I am going to try to make my game much more efficient. I don’t mean that in a crappy kung fu way, I mean in a smart way. See the openings and do the techniques that require the least grunting and shoving and gurning. Be like water flowing down a river… when it reaches a boulder too big to go over, it simply flows around it… okay maybe in a vaguely crappy kung fu way.

I did manage to bone up on my BJJ reading, and got through the whole of Mitsuyoshi Hayakawa’s Basic BJJ and Alberto Crane’s Advanced BJJ books. I have rolled with Hayakawa-san when he came to visit our dojo, the man is wickedy-awesome-bo-diggety-wizard. The only thing I know about Alberto Crane is that his legs are bendy and he gets his face punched pretty hard in the UFC.

My verdict? I loved the simpleness and the large clear pictures of the Hayakawa book. Alberto Crane’s book was full of moves with ridiculous names (“Reverse flying omoplata to spinning heelhook armbar counter with extra fries”) and tiny, badly exposed pictures. Still, there was a DVD which might have been more clear.

Osu!

Headspace, evaluation, bollocks.

I had started to write a big post about my situation and my headspace and other early-90s pop psychology terms, but the words of Hywel Teague echoed in my head (sounding surprisingly like those gents from Dirty Sanchez and saying something like “You’re thinking too much, Matty boy. Leeks. Cardiff. Sheeeeeep.”) and I thought, bollocks to that.

Pat at MMALife, a fellow kakutougi blogger, wrote a pretty decent self evaluation here and here, which made me think I should do the same. But I am definitely not in the same situation as he. He seems to be pretty confident with his game at the moment, as he should be, coming off some good wins at the inaugural Rickson Cup tourney. The kind of self-evaluation someone coming off a win writes vs. someone coming off two losses is very different.

Plus, he seems to have everything in order. One of those guys that knows how many calories he eats or what HIIT stands for. (Have Internet, Imbibing Tea?). Unlike me.

So I thought, fuck it. I don’t need to do that.

I’m going to keep it simple.

Turns out, my foot is broken. I had an MRI at the weekend which revealed a squiggly line in the bridge of my foot which is apparently a BAD THING. One of the big bones was fractured but has begun fusing together again in the last week, which is good. No big deal though, there is almost no pain at all and I think I will be able to persuade the doc to cut this cast off in three weeks.

That gives me time to chill and think about stuff. I’m still scheduled to teach a few days at the dojo to cover my sensei while he is in America at the mundials, and I think I will still do that. Chuck the gi on, direct the class, maybe do a technique and some pressups and situps, but skip the sparring. I can do that with a cast, right?

As for my game itself. I’m going back to basics. Keeping things simple. When I’m healed up I’m going to attack BJJ with a new vigour, a new mindset.

Priority number one: FUN! When I enjoy something, I do it well. When it becomes a chore, I don’t. Competing had become a bit of a chore. The next comp I’m going to go out throwing uchi-matas, wild triangles and crazy scrambles. Who cares if I lose, as long as I enjoy myself and perform well.

Priority number two: THINK FAST. My physical game has reach a certain (not very high level), but my mental game has yet to get there. I know the escapes. I know the submissions. I know the sweeps. But I am always a second too late in seeing the opportunity. So I am going to work on my reactions, my mugen, my zen mind state thingamjig. See the moves before they happen.

Priority number three: WORK HARD! That means never to “settle” for any position, to always push harder than the other guy in the scramble, and basically, make the other person work really, really hard to get position on me.

I’m going to print out some really basic self-affirmations and stick them on my wall to look at and remind myself when I am doing a little training at home. Nothing too cheesy… Something reminding myself to think fast, to play the game, and that I can win.

Oh, lastly, I can heartily recommend bashing your students with chairs* if you ever want to let off a little steam. Look at him, he loves it, the little bugger.

* I don’t actually recommend this at all, dickheads.

Roger Gracie – Ultra Powerful Alien/Human Hybrid???

From The Fightworks Podcast, an interview with Robert Drysdale…

He is also incredibly strong. I don’t know if you guys saw this in the finals of 2007 but he ripped my gi. He just ripped my sleeve apart. That was a brand new gi that I had never worn before! That’s not normal! That’s not normal, I don’t care what people say. I have never seen that happen in my life. When he did that I was like, “Holy, &*#!” He was pulling against my sleeve, and I had my hand on his collar with a pretty good grip, and he kept pulling. I thought to myself, “You’re crazy, you’re never going to get my arm out of there”. It was stuck on his collar and it wasn’t going to move. And he kept pulling until he ripped my gi. I have never seen that before. That’s amazing when you think about it. How many people can do that? It’s not like it’s used or anything, it was brand new. The guy is incredibly strong. It may not look like it, but he’s a freak.

That is insane!

Subscribe to their podcast if you haven’t already.

Prognosis: Suckitude!

So I went to the doctors today because my foot was really sore. I got an x-ray, which came up negative… so no large bones broken. But apparently small breaks don’t show up on x-rays. You need an MRI for that. So I will wait until Friday and if it still hurts, get one of those.

I believe the doctor’s complete prognosis was “what a load of fucking shit” with the recommendation to “be really pissed off and headbutt stuff pretty hard.”

So that’s what I’ll be doing.

Hopping around Elementary Schools teaching English is not fun on those metal leg thingamyjingies. I thought I could be all cyborgy and awesome but I was just crap at moving and stuff.

I will use this opportunity to do some “mental training” (of what that will consist I am not entirely sure yet) as well as some upper body and core strength work. Fancy names for pullups and situps.

Arse cocks!