Category Archives: bjj

Half Guard Work

Random Thursday off…can’t miss out on jiu jitsu. It was nice to not have any time constraints due to work for a change too.

Before we started warming up, Charlie and I were talking about being tired of being “the nail” and getting beat on. He said something to the effect of being the hammer today. I responded back with “You can’t choose to be the hammer. The hammer chooses you.” Some days you have it, some days you don’t.

Lesson of the day was a half guard sweep/back take combo. From half guard, defend your head, duck under & grab their far knee. Work to our knees. They wizzer to prevent the back take, we push in, they push back, we duck under and sweep. Or we can Pete Townsend our wizzer’d arm out, take the back by stepping up and sitting into it.

For rounds, we did 3 minutes on top/bottom of half guard, three times. I had Derwin, Ryan, and Darren. I did kinda meh with Derwin, despite hitting a rolling back take at the buzzer from on top. Ryan and I were even, both getting some successes. And I ran through Darren. So, nail, even, and hammer today. Success always tastes good.

Saturday Rounds

Normal warm up, then Brady made up the groups. I drew Wade, Dumi, Gil, and Richie. 20 minutes in, 5 out.

I had Wade first. We had a nice back and forth going for most of the round, me attempting to sweep, him attempting to pass, and neither of us getting our way. Mesfin commented later that he thought my guard work was great.

I had Gil next. And it was a 5 minute smashing that tweaked my wrist and shoulder both. My wrist got twisted up in his gi from the bottom of side control, then he switched sides and I couldn’t pull it out. Later he had be in a crucifix, and did a weird shoulder lock. I complained about young white/blues hurting me a couple weeks ago, and now I’ve gotta watch out for the browns too.

Dumi smashed me too, but very gently. His control is outstanding.

Richie was going slow all day and working on the bottom, so I played along too.

Some of This, Some of That

Nooner. We started out with some self defense drilling, bear hug from behind. We covered the basic escape, sit, break the grip, chop & turn. Then we did the anti-throw hook with our foot, to the knee bar.

Then we had a quick lesson on passing the guard when we’re broken down. This is very interesting to me, as I end up there a lot. First, establish some safety so we don’t get choked, grip at the armpits to prevent him from getting the right angle. Then re-grip, and do a punching motion to push his collar toward him, stepping up with the same side foot, we can stand and twist to open the guard. From there, we can either land in leg drag, or side control.

For rounds, I had one with Phil, Davis and Justin. Phil was lively, and I caught a knee in the nose for it. Davis and Justin are white belts, both struggling to find the balance between dead fish and hulk mode. I stayed safe, but I’m taking no chances with those kind of guys.


Big class. Brady led the warm up. Damian made the groups.

I had two white belts, Stu and Jimmy. 4 in, one guy out. Advance your position and stay in.

It was a good mix, and a quick turn over between guys. Every 10 or 15 minutes Damian would stop everyone and set up 3 matches for everyone to watch. First point wins. The back to the chipper.

Wednesday Rudeness

I started my random day off with the morning class. Always a good mix of guys there. Damian led.

Lesson of the day was passing half guard when he’s got a good position. He’s on his side, has the underhook, and is looking to bump us and take our back or start a scramble. We back off and secure his hip. When we’re read, we shift our base, grabbing his back, so our lat is up high on his body, on his face almost. Walk our trapped foot up, push to clear our knee, then switch to 3/4 mount. From there, we use the “rude boy” crossface and go to mount. Then trap his head and Ezekiel choke.

For rounds, I had Tyler (holy cow is he big), Derwin (who was going hard!), Daryl, and Schwartz.


Nooner today. Half the class we drilled headlock escapes, because there’s no school like the old school. The other half we did one spider guard pass to the back…which is a decidedly new school guard. I drilled with Zach.

For rounds, we did 3 up, 3 down, starting in spider guard. I had Zach again.

The Chipper

Uff. Saturday I was still sore from Wednesday night. The warm up helped, but then…

The Chipper.

Groups of eight. 6 in, 2 out. Starting sitting. Top guy needs to pass. Bottom, sweep or submit. Winner stays. Looser goes to the end of the line and a new guy comes in. An hour straight, with no more than 30 seconds of a break at any given time.

I had Tim, Brown Belt Chris, Dumi, Morgan, Nik, Wade, and Blue Belt Tyler. Black, brown, brown, purple, purple, blue. Tough group.


Happy New Year.

My 2016 BJJ ended with a big whimper. It has been impossible for me to keep a steady schedule going with the life changes that are ongoing. Work isn’t consistent enough to allow me to go during the day. I had about a 6 week long head cold that made me shudder at the thought of going to roll and I really didn’t want to share with any one even if I did.

I did get get to class last Thursday. Bob the Monster warmed us up, and then we skipped the lesson and when right into rolling. I had Charlie, Philip, Megan, Meli and George. Once around, plus an extra round with Charlie. I felt decent. Glad I went. Sad that I don’t know when I’ll be back.

My boys started you wrestling recently. Fun to see them learning. Interesting to see the difference in culture between that and BJJ.

My BJJ anniversary is coming up fast. Time flies.

Stuck in the Middle

Noon class feels like a hit and run. Rush there, and hop right in. Duck out a bit early, rush back to work. But still, some jiu jitsu is better than no jiu jitsu.

Lesson of the day was two passes of DLR guard. We reviewed and drilled, then into rounds. I had James and Rafa. One round on top, trying to pass, one round on bottom, trying to sweep or submit. I did great with James on top of me, sweeping most of the time. I did horrible on top of Rafa, getting swept every time.

Closed Guard Work

A quick review of breaking our oppenent down from closed guard, transitioning to the Clamp, cross choking and then if they defend, armlock, and if they defend, pendulum sweep.

For rounds we did 3 minutes on top, 3 on bottom, closed guard. Pass vs sweep or submit. I had Phillip and another guy, and only could squeeze in one round with each.