Tag Archives: bjj

Monday Fundamentals & Black Belts

I haven’t been able to train much lately. My usual fall cold is stretching on. Work & family have kept me busy.

Saturday, Damian promoted Mason, Gil, and Oscar to black belt. A special day for them to be sure. We had a big crowd turn out for it too, I got to see many people I haven’t run into in a while.

Yesterday I was able to sneak off for a noon fundamental class. Strangely, it was the same lesson as another one I went to recently. Standing bear hug into knee bar, then breaking them down in closed guard into straight armlock from the clamp position.


Kid’s football & soccer has ended…so back to Saturday class again.

Regular warm up, then into groups. I had a group of 9 I think, so we did in for 6 minutes, out for 3. I had Morgan, Wade, and a bunch of new faces.

My first round was interesting. Guy I’ve never seen before, with a blue/white striped belt. Starts slow, then bam, he’s going 100 mph. Pass, mount, choke/neck crank. Okay then. More of the same for the rest of the round. Turns out he’s a multi All American wrestler. I watched his other rounds, and he’s going to be a terror.

Double Attack


Double attack from mount. The traditional version is that you go for a cross choke, they upa, and then you can attack the arm. Today’s version was a loop around variation of the cross choke, and if they defend that, you can switch up to a regular rear choke and roll to take the back and finish it.

For rounds, I had two quick ones. One with Marcus and one with Blue Belt Tyler. Did good, though drew, with Marcus. Tyler was sharp and got me mounted and attacked over and over. Ended up getting the rear choke right at the buzzer.


Nooner. Tim led. Just a quickie lesson today.

We drilled grip breaks from when our standing opponent grabs our knees. We regrip his sleeves, swing out wide, and kick to break the grip. Do the same on the other side, and come in with our knees on the inside and flared to prevent him from regripping.

Or, if he’s got a strong grip, and the kick doesn’t break it, we rock up and grab him at the elbow, pull him down, trap his hand in our armpit, and then squeeze his arm with our knees while elevating our hips for an armlock.

For rounds, I had two 5 minute ones. One with Darren and one with Old Mike. Did good with Darren. Went slow with Mike, but moved well.


I got to lead the warm up again, woo. Tim led class. We covered the bear hug from behind into a knee bar, the clamp into the reverse armlock from closed guard, and arm lock from when they stand up incorrectly and leave their head and arms down.

To round out class, we did the chipper. Top has to pass. Bottom has to sweep or submit. Good stuff!

Keeping On

Another Saturday. Some mat time is better than no mat time, right?

We warmed up, then split into two groups. White belts, and everyone else. Colored belts were self paired this week, so I got Harris, Sarah, JR, Popsicle, and a special treat, Renato. He was back in town for a bit. Nice to see him again.

I did pretty good with Popsicle, holding him at bay for a long time before he got me with a combination arm crush/omoplata/triangle. Once you’re in that frying pan, it’s tough to get out.

Damian stopped class for a round to let JR and Renato have a “super fight” match. Renato won by DQ, as JR went for a toe hold, which is illegal at purple. Might be my fault, as JR and I just had finished a round, where I was attempting to toe hold him!

Master Worlds

Masters Worlds was this weekend in Vegas. We sent 23 people, and came back with a half dozen medals. Glad to see the team succeed.

Those of us that stayed here had some low key training. We’d stop once in a while and crowd around a laptop and watch the stream of one of our team mate’s matches. Fun stuff.

I had rounds with Sarah (twice), Charlie, Colin, and Rafa that I recall. Sarah is due for her purple belt I think. She’s come a long ways. I did really well with Charlie, catching him in a triangle that I rolled over to mount then armlocked him. And I surprised myself with Colin. I pulled off the kimura pass to side control, maintained the grip, and then swung it into an armlock that I would have finished if not for the buzzer. Pretty good for me vs a brown belt.

No Time To Explain. Just Roll


No lesson. Just a warm up, groups, and get down to business. I had Tim, JR, and Officer Jason in my group.

I did okay with Tim in our first round. Only bow and arrowed me once. JR and I were even-ish, though he had the advantage most of the time. I did pull of a nifty sweep on him near the end. When I got to Jason, I was gasping for breath. I told him that I was going to go slow, and did. He gave me a change to review my knee-on-belly escapes. I’m too tempted to go for the reversal, because it’s a reversal, I’ll end up on top. With the escape, I’m still in side control, still in danger.

Once more around, then off to the shower.

I felt better afterwards.


Saturday was a frustrating day.

It’s been a long & stressful week. Jiu jitsu almost always make me feel better after going to class. But not on Saturday.

It started off okay. I was happy to see my boys get their first stripes, and they were equally happy.

We had a smaller-than-lately class for the adults. The IBJJF Chicago tournament was going on, and a dozen or so people went. And did very well by all accounts. Tim made up the groups, and we did one round in, one out system.

I had a mixed bag of a group. Started off with Kevin the white belt. Went okay, he’s trying to be fast and engage only when it’s to his advantage, so we spent a third of our round before I could get a hold of him without him jerking away and disengaging.

Next round is where the day started to go bad. I drew a visiting purple belt. I’ve always been told (and believe) that as a visitor, you’re the equivalent of a guest in someone else’s house. You act polite. And this guy was, but he was also working at (what felt like) 105%. Hey man, if you feel the need to prove you “belong” here or something, then go right ahead. I’d much rather run at 60% or 70%, and get a sweat in, have some fun, and be able to walk the next day. So he triangled me right off the bat. Then knee sliced into an anaconda. Then bermibolo’d into a RNC. No biggie, I know even at 100%, I’m not going to be beating this guy. The thing that really set me off was near the end. He was setting up another bermibolo, and Tim started shouting coaching tips to me. And I really can’t even express WHY that bothered me. Was he disappointed in me? Was I frustrated at sucking? Was it non-jiu-jitsu things bothering me? I don’t know.

A round off, stewing to myself, followed by a round with Bob the monster really didn’t help things at all. I’d love to be as smooth and technical as Bob. Or as strong. But he really has a tendency to be “rude”. Nothing illegal, but a plethora of little frustrating things.

Another round off, more stewing. Next round, back with Kevin. And after that, I decided that I was done for the day. I was just frustrated enough that I wasn’t going to learn anything. So I sat and watched the last couple of rounds. Which (now) frustrates me. I don’t get a lot of mat time. To think that I was unhappy enough to waste what little I get, my head must of been (still is?!) in a weird place.

Saturday’s events have provided a lot of food for thought.

Spicy Sauce


White belt level technique today…spiced up. We covered proper mounting technique. Stuff the legs away from you, they’ll usually attempt to break that grip, and when the do, knee slice over into 3/4 mount. When the inevitably upa, then you can mount safely and cross your feet. Establish the position, then cross choke. If/when they attempt to upa and roll out of that, you switch to knee pillow and collar choke them.

During the last couple of minutes of drilling, Damian grabbed me and told me he was putting me in a group with Bri, who is competing soon. “Put a little zip in your roll with her.” Aye aye, spicy sauce coming right up.

So I gave her the business. To her credit, she did great. She was in a bad position the entire time, but didn’t quit moving or rest, and her defense was pretty good. My other round was with Erin, who wasn’t competing, but still got the spicy stuff. Same deal with her, she did well. At one point, I had her in an omoplata, and I was getting ready to finish it when Pat started coaching her how to escape, so I paused and let him walk her through it, then I switched to an armlock. He started to coach her through that too, but then she yelled ‘stop!’. I wasn’t sure who she was talking to, so I stopped and checked that she was okay. She was talking to Pat, and was good to go. I get it, tough to listen and roll at the same time!