B Stuff et cetera

A blog about (snow)Boarding and Business school

BJJ Class 101 – Catch

Posted by forlogos on July 18, 2008

Another long class.  Seems that lately all the classes I’ve been going to have been long – joining part of the earlier class, attending the entire later class, then about 20-30 minutes more after.  Of course am still taking it easy and not pushing my shoulder too hard.

I got to join the drills of the first class: basic scissor sweep followed by cross-choke.  Although I have been using the basic scissor a while, it was nice to practice it on a non-resisting opponent and trying to refine it further.  After drills a mini-tournament was held.  A pair of students were matched and only they rolled while everyone else watched.  Time was kept, and points scored.  I didn’t get picked to fight, but that’s fine as I didn’t want to join anyway since they started on their feet and takedowns would definitely hurt my shoulder.

The second class started with a few hundred jumping jacks and a cool turtle-roll flow drill.  It was cool.  I’ll try to illustrate it soon, but am already backed up with those and likely won’t find the time to do them.

After that was rolling.  I rolled for a while with a very heavy new, but not so new white belt.  Y’know, one of those guys that’s been rolling just a few weeks, watches a lot of videos, and absorbs techniques like a sponge.  I wish I was like that!  Anyway, I was able to negate his huge size and weight advantage with technique and got him with americanas and an armlock.  He kept going for collar chokes but couldn’t finish.  I gave him some pointers, particularly about how deep a grip the first attacking hand should have, and he eventually got me to tap to one.

I next rolled with one of the white belts that I consider almost blue.  I was sucking big time, but as time went on, I got better.  Particularly on top of half-guard, where I’d never really seen the value of cross-base until now.  I caught a few knees and elbows in the face with this roll, but it was all good.  Have a nice big bruise near my eye.

I rolled with my instructor last.  Even though a black belt always runs the classes, I rarely get to roll with them.  While I got to sweep and pass, I kept thinking at the back of my mind that I only pulled those off because he let me, I still tried and was surprised everytime something worked.  After a few minutes he must’ve been like “hmmm, am bored already” and he quickly changed gears and subbed me.

So that was it, another good night of the jits!!


Posted in BJJ, BJJ Class | 2 Comments »

BJJ Class 100 – The Big Double O

Posted by forlogos on July 9, 2008

Finally, I’ve reached the landmark hundreth class!!  It seems odd that I just reached this now considering that I’ve been doing the jits for some two years now.  Oh well, that’s life…

Class was good. Again I joined the earlier class for rolling.  I didn’t get to join in when they were drilling the technique and no moves were taught in the later class – it was all rolling.

Rolling was awesome though.  I felt great today and did better against some of the people I felt horrible with last week. Got a few taps (I think I’ll putt he tap counter on hold until I decide what goals I want to aim for), tapped even more, and had a great time.  It just feels wonderful to be back.

I taught some people some techniques, asked help from others, and am proud for being as cautious with my shoulder as I was.  I actually tapped to someone as he did a roll from turtle – I tapped to a roll!!  My guard passes felt more crisp and my game felt better than it did in the last two classes.

Anyway, awesome awesome awesome awesome awesome awesome awesome. Can’t wait for the next class!!

Posted in BJJ, BJJ Class | 15 Comments »

armbar from guard, switch, and triangle

Posted by forlogos on July 4, 2008

Ok, here’s the techniques that were drilled waaay back in BJJ Class 94. Hope I still remember the details…

Variation 1

Nogi starts off in guard, pulling on Boarder’s sleeves, his knees controlling Boarder’s elbows, and his feet on Boarder’s hips.

Nogi brings his left arm up and out to have Boarder’s arm betweeen his legs and hooks his right leg against Boarder’s body near the armpit.

Nogi pulls Boarder’s arm close in as he starts to pivot off his back and swinging his left leg…

…up over Boarder’s head and finishes the armbar.

Variation 2

As an alternative, Nogi starts off with both of Boarder’s arms in the center but with his feet on Boarder’s hips and while grabbing both sleeves.

Nogi brings up his right leg tight against Boarder’s body under Boarder’s arm. Nogi pivots on his back, with the help of his left leg pushing off of Boarder’s hip, but (strangely) Nogi’s right leg helps a great deal with the pivoting…

… and the pivoting gets Nogi to position his left leg to position for the armbar…

…but it the technique is loose and Boarder is able to pull his arm out. Boarder thinks he’s safe, but he left his other arm between Nogi’s legs, leaving him vulnerable to an omoplata or …. (let’s call this point B)

…since Nogi still has grips on Boarder’s right arm, he attacks it. Nogi pivots on his back and repositions his feet on Boarder’s hips.

Once he is squared off with boarder, Nogi continues to pivot off his back, using his left leg against Boarder’s body and right foot on Boarder’s hip.

Nogi continues the pivot and keeps Boarders arm tight this time.

Nogi kicks his leg over and finishes the armbar.

Variation 3

From point B, Boarder pulls his arm free from the armbar attempt. Nogi fixes his grips on Boarders arm.

Nogi pivots off his back and pulls Boarder in, trapping Boarder with his legs.

Nogi puts on the finishing touches and taps Boarder with a triangle.

Posted in BJJ, Guard, Snowboard Instructors, submissions | Leave a Comment »

BJJ Class 99 – anniversay

Posted by forlogos on July 4, 2008

Went to BJJ class… This class marks the one year anniversary of my shoulder injury. Just like today, it was the very first BJJ class I could attend in July and it also fell before the fourth of July. Thankfully, there were no injuries today – just a session of some good rolling.

As is usual with classes this year, I arrived too late for the first class and too early for the next class. I stretched and warmed up on the sides and was welcomed in to join the rolling of the first class. I rolled with a blue belt who played defense the whole time. My control felt loose and noobish, but it was nice to get to practice some top control.

Second class started with light jogging, which combined with the heavy gi, 90 degree weather, drinking a bit too much Gatorade beforehand, and the overall lack of fitness – I was exhausted after just a few minutes. We did the (read: tried) the guard wall exercise where while on you spin and rotate on your shoulders, go upside down and end up in the beginning guard position. It was a bit confusing at first, but I eventually started getting the hang of it.

A closed guard sweep to mount was drilled then rolling. I have a backlog of techniques to post about, so I really do hope I get to make a post on this technique. Rolling was great today.

I waited too long before writing this post out, so I don’t remember much anymore. I was extra careful with my shoulder and so tapped a lot, even if there was no tight submission applied. My best roll was with a whitebelt who had done some wrestling, and had great sweeps and base. Tapped a lot to him, but it was very fun. I noticed that my performance was inversely proportional to how long I was rolling, the more tired I was, the worse I got. Good thing I didn’t gas so quickly.

My technique was vacuum-sucky, but it felt infinitely better than the last time..

Happy July fourth everyone!!!

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BJJ Class 98 – Total reNoob

Posted by forlogos on June 19, 2008

So, I went back to BJJ.

I’m gonna take it slow, just one class a week. My school no longer offers a monthly rate for just one class a week, so I’m going to need to fight the temptation to go more than once…But I’ll also need to fight the temptation to go all out, train hard, roll ’till I can’t stand anymore, and say ‘yes’ to anyone that wants to roll… Man, I’ve got a real challenge!

After two months off, I wasn’t surprised at the plethora of new faces and the many new faces with skill. I am surprised, however, at the growth of women joining the academy. There used to be just one regularly training girl and now there are four.  That and there were a lot of promotions recently…

Class was a blur. It was all rolling. And since it was rotation rolling with a base row, there were no noobs to roll with. This return wasn’t as great as last time. My technique felt worse than ever and I was just one big pile of suck.

I sucked big time. And my suckiness must’ve seemed even more sucky as I did only every other roll and I turned down more offers to roll than I can remember. Oh well, injuries suck.

Oh, and I forgot to trim my nails so when I pulled guard once, half of one of my fingernails popped out and completely went the wrong way. I yelled ouch, bent it back, and my opponent said “you should cut your nails before class!” That made me suck even more.

Besides all that, rolling again was nice. It feels great to be back. I hope I get to stay for the long-term this time around!


Posted in BJJ, BJJ Class | 5 Comments »

Yet another update

Posted by forlogos on June 18, 2008

Since the last time I went to BJJ, it has been two months.

After the first three weeks of time off, my shoulder felt like it had recovered and felt great – then while doing my physical therapy exercises, I went and did lat pull downs with 40 pounds. I felt something crack or pull in my shoulder and I was out of commission again. Bummer.

Since I foolishly signed a one-year contract when I had restarted BJJ, I was seriously thinking of getting a doctor to write a letter to have the contract cancelled due to health reasons… I had accepted (and went all sad and stuff) the fact that I would stop BJJ 😦

But my shoulder has started feeling pretty good again, and I just can’t stay away from the jits… so I will start BJJ again but take it really easy. If I hurt my shoulder again, that’s it. It is a sign, no more jiu-jitsu for me. I’ll take a multi-year break and go take some Muay Thai (man, I miss kicking).

I don’t really feel like saying much about other parts of my life, but here’s a quickie: I’ve been at my new job for three months now, grad school still sucks but is going well, and (obviously) snowboarding season has ended. Oh, and I’m shopping for a ring…

Posted in BJJ, Etc, Injuries | 5 Comments »


Posted by forlogos on June 18, 2008

I have broken all the rules on “how to be a good blogger”.

My biggest sins:

  • I have not created any content
  • I have not linked to or shared anything
  • I have not responded to any comments on my blog
  • I have not responded to any posts on any blog
  • I have not read any other blogs
  • I haven’t even logged on to my blog account in the longest time

To the readers of this blog (if there are still any):

I am extremely sorry. I just haven’t been very good at this blogging stuff. With BJJ being the main focus here, it’s been pretty difficult keeping this up…my experiences in the past 54 weeks have been frustrating and discouraging. Hope that changes soon.

Posted in blogging, Etc | 4 Comments »

shoulder update

Posted by forlogos on April 28, 2008

My shoulder sucks…

It’s been more than a week since I last went to a jits class but my shoulder feels like it went back 5 months in terms of post-surgery recovery.  It hurts when I sit, type, walk, stand, lie down, do anything or nothing.  It’s a low level chronic pain inside my shoulder, not painful enough for me to say “ouch” but enough for me to feel uncomfortable.  This really bites.

If my shoulder is still this way in a few days (friday), I’m going to take a month of jiu-jitsu to recover.

Actually, since my shoulder is feeling this way, I should take a month or two off anyway.

Posted in BJJ, Injuries | 4 Comments »

basic scissor sweep

Posted by forlogos on April 23, 2008

Here’s the technique we went over in BJJ Class 93. I’ve been doing this sweep for a while now, but have missed a few key details…

Nogi starts with Boarder in his closed guard.

Nogi sits up a little as he reaches for Boarder’s collar with his right and grabs by the elbow with his left. Nogi also begins to open his guard.

Nogi hipscapes backward and rotates a little to the side. He positions his left leg flat on the mat against Boarders leg. Nogi’s right knee is by Boarder’s chest, with his leg pressed against Boarder’s upper body. Note that Nogi hooks his right foot on Boarder’s body. Let’s call this part Step 3.

Nogi sits up, bringing his upper body closer to Boarder. This is the step I always forget. Against lighter guys, it doesn’t matter. Against heavier or more skilled guys, this is crucial to getting the sweep.

Keeping his arms tight, Nogi leans back thus bringing Boarder with him – this upsets Boarder’s base, and makes the rest of the sweep much easier to perform.

With Boarder off-base, Nogi does the rest of the sweep as usual. He pulls Boarder with his arms, scissors his legs together, kicking his right leg up and over.

Nogi lands on mount on top of Boarder and can use the grip he has on the collar to set-up a choke. Or whatever else…

Going back to step 3 – if Nogi doesn’t have space to put his left leg on the mat, as the case might be in the pic above…

…Nogi can put his foot on Boarder’s knee…(arms moved out of the way so you can see the foot/knee)

… and push down on it, sliding Boarder’s leg back and removing his base. This can also be combined with the little sit-up, so as to help with the sweep better (arms moved out of the way so you can see the foot/knee).

Posted in BJJ, Guard, Mount, Snowboard Instructors, sweeps, Techniques | 4 Comments »

shoulder injury prevention tip for throwing

Posted by forlogos on April 23, 2008

Here’s a pic of what I was trying to say in the post on BJJ Class 92.  I didn’t really look for it online but I took my own pix…

This is a throw with the arm/shoulder positioned poorly. The arm is too far away from the body and puts the shoulder at an increased risk of getting injured.

Here’s the same throw with the same grip on the collar. Much better on this pic since the arm is closer to the body, not out and to the side. The throw is easier to execute and much safer for the shoulder.

Since this type of throw has to be executed quickly, there’s always a chance that the arm will be positioned incorrectly – and “”RIIIIP!!” injured shoulder. So like the purple belt that pointed this out said, it just might be better to not to try throwing with this grip.

And I won’t.

Posted in BJJ, Snowboard Instructors, Techniques, throws | Leave a Comment »