Quite a crowd turned out for it, lots and lots of old faces and people I haven’t seen since pre-pandemic. A few took off early, but many stayed for a roll or two and some catching up.
I had a round with Wade, JR, Nick, and Trey.
Well, I’ve been training. Sporadically, but training never the less.
Lots of new faces and partners too. And, it’s been nice reconnecting with some old ones.
My neck/upper back has been stiff, some things never change. Trying to take care of it, and with the holidays and whatnot going on, things have been pretty uneven.
Training feels odd. Relearning everything plus having latent muscle memory popping up now and then, makes rolls very strange!
The past two Saturday’s have convinced me. I need to restart jiu jitsu.
I thought a lot about this during the pandemic, and I was pretty comfortable with just riding out into the sunset and moving on. But seeing many old friends and rolling again changed my mind.
I went to my first class at Rebel BJJ today. Light day, as it was just Tim and I. We drilled a sit up guard sweep, that was very appropriate. I was working something similar on Saturday, to no effect against Tim and Long. Then we rolled for a few rounds. At a nice leisurely pace that only left me mostly gasping for air.
So yeah. Pandemic. That was a thing.
I think I had one more Saturday training before the world shut down, that I didn’t blog about.
So…19 months without training. I spent more than a few hours thinking about jiu jitsu though. Talking with friends, contemplating my future, etc. The break was nice. More free time for other things. The break sucked. I put on a few COVID pounds. I didn’t see much of my BJJ friends.
Tim has split off from Daimian and opened up his own gym now, Rebel BJJ. Saturday was his first class. And I couldn’t let that pass, regardless if I decide to train again regularly or not. So, I dusted off my bag and set out.
It was like old home week. Lots of people I haven’t seen in a long time. But a solid crowd for a short-notice soft opening day. We did a quick warm up, which had me exhausted from the get go, and then into groups. I had Meli, Long, Paulie G, and Mesfin. All of whom also had been off for a long time. We did 4 in, rotating on any scored point. Exhausting work.
And I ache today. But it was good. I need to decide on my future.
Literally and figuratively.
We’re buying a new house. Which adds to my already cramped schedule. However, (almost) nothing stops the jiu jitsu train.
Saturday I had a great group. Wade, Bob, Tom, and Nick. We did 3 minute rounds, with each of us being in for 12 minutes straight. It was a great mix. Wade is always tough. The others are more manageable, but still training at about the pace that I’m looking for.
Feels like Spring is just around the corner. Things are warming up, the ice is melting. I love this time of year.
And I loved my group on Saturday too. Pat, Dennis, Kevin, and Gary. Good rounds with all of them, and I got to share a butterfly sweep with Dennis and Kevin. Gary was bending way over in guard, so I showed them how they could exploit that mistake. Kevin even hit it in a later round.
So, months ago, Judo Alex invites me (and others) to join him in sunny South Florida for some fun in the sun and the IBJJF Miami Open. Why yes, yes I would love to join you and cheerlead!
In the end, it was only three of us, Alex, Rob and I. We had a great time, but focusing on the BJJ end of things….
We did squeeze in one training session before leaving for the tournament, at Vickery BJJ. Small gym, and the three of us were the only colored belts there besides the two black belt instructors.
Lesson of the day were some single leg takedown options off of a blocked shot. They shoot, we sprawl and down-block with our arm/shoulder to prevent them from penetrating. We’re heavy, then we lighten up to allow them to regain posture while we drop our level and take our own shot.
I paired up with a nice white belt and we learned together. Rob and Alex did kind of their own thing off to the side, working some throws they wanted to use.
We did some rounds afterwards, and all three of us got wrecked by the the instructor of the day, Patrick.
As for the tournament itself, we saw a ton of good jiu jitsu. We saw some really bad jiu jitsu. Alex went 0-2 for double silver. Rob went 0-2 for a single bronze. So not a lot of success, but we all enjoyed the day!