…choke like a python.

The last couple of classes have brought in some new (to me anyways) faces. 3 or 4 different guys have come back for the summer. Must be students away at school or something. The result has been a swelling of the class. Mat space is becoming scarce.

Today was the last day of the turtle guard techniques we’ve been drilling for the past week. We rotated partners a few times, just to get a feel for different body types. In addition to the 4 moves we’ve already learned, we learned another one. It’s really a clock choke escape. Took me a bit to get it, but Brian was patient enough to let me run through it a few times slow. Plus he showed me a nice counter to a pass defense.

My rib has been feeling pretty good this week. Still tender in one spot, but I think I’m at 95% or so, so good enough to roll. I paired up with one of the new guys, as far as I can tell, a zero stripe white belt…but he had to be 260 pounds at least. He swept me, but I escaped his mount and regained guard. But he just crushed me and put on a half cross choke and leaned into me and squished me like a bug. A bit of a breather, and I grabbed Matt for a roll. I like rolling with him, he’s just a little bigger than I am and a little stronger, and is a good challenge. I’ve also never tapped him out.

We started, and I got on top. He started a open guard that quickly turned into a triangle. I stacked him up and started to turn out of it (thanks to Saulo’s Jiu-Jitsu University book!), but got hung up. He didn’t have the angle to make it tight, and I had my jaw down. He squeezed and squeezed, but I just hung out and worked one hand to his collar and started pressuring his neck. He released it, and we started again. He jumped into my guard, I broke him down and did the elevator sweep I learned on Tuesday. He seemed pretty surprised at the quick reversal of fortunes!

He bucked, and I got his back, but he defended really well and escaped to half guard, and rolled me over. He got an americana grip going, but I was able to grab my sleeve with my other arm and use his head for leverage to defend it. I tried the take the back from guard that we learned on Tuesday too, but couldn’t break his headlock, my arms were like jelly at this point. We were both pretty gassed and slowing down. I butterflyed his leg, setting up the elevator again, but couldn’t get it working.

I heard Damian shouting “Don’t give up on it Josh!” so I kept the hook, relaxed a little, and waited for him to move. We were both panting, so it took a minute, but as soon as his weight shifted I lifted and rolled him right over. He bucked and tried to spin out of the mount, but gave up his back. I got my feet in as hooks, but he grabbed my wrist before I could get his collar. I was only an inch away, right in front of my face. I knew if I could get it, I had him.

He was bucking, but my legs held him, and I was able to nudge his collar over with my other hand. Got one finger on it, pulled it in…got two fingers on it, started to pull on his neck. He felt it and let go of my wrist to defend, and I got a full on grip and that’s all she wrote. A pretty epic roll for me. We were both happy with it.

Elevator Sweep

I try not to have an ego in class, or keep track of who can tap out who and what my ranking in the pecking order is. But I can’t help but to be happy with that roll and success.

No fundamentals class tonight. It was supposed to be BJJ 101, but we just rolled instead.

Mongoose Mike got his first stripe too. Well deserved.

W3D2b pushups done. Proper form and all.