Okay I think I have the class cycle figured out:
- Saturday – almost always ground
- Monday – 70% kickboxing type stuff and 30% ground (often a recap of Saturday)
- Wed. – Mook Jong and application
Teacher took pity on me and threw me a bone. Due to being out briefly thanks to Mr. Neck, part due to my crazy work schedule, and part due to just not being able to make Saturdays, Teacher changed his plans and had folks work on ground stuff again this past Monday.
FINALLY I got introduced to the guard!
Lessons learned or observations in no particular order:
- You don’t want to be there too long on the street (teacher used boot stomp example from second attacker again)
- If you can’t escape play it like a ground fight BUT fight dirty (e.g. pokes, gouges, and even bites)
- You can contract your hips to bring the attacker in close where it’s hard to punch
- You can expand to make it hard for attacker to hit your face
- You can grab the head at take down to keep attacker close – from here it’s hard to punch for attacker.
- With head close (however you manage that) teacher promotes a thumb to the eye (dire straits only!)
- All of this was practiced from an attacker using a double leg take down (i.e. goal was to also practice that move too)
- Some of the advanced guys (I think two or three are in the BJJ class) were doing some nifty hip throws!
- We did not practice submissions or escapes from the guard – just focused on expanding on contracting
- We also worked mostly a closed guard
Point #9 is my fault. I’m the newest so my mere presence is forcing the beginning group to review all basic material for my benefit. One of the biggest lessons for me was the fact that you can extend your hips or contract them to control how you are being punched. I did not know this.
The other lesson relates to mass. In the newbie group we have one guy who is an easy 240 or 250. All I can say is that when he was on top of me I was hosed. Yes, yes, we got the whole “Royce Gracie used BJJ to beat guys that outweighed him by 70lbs” speech. The problems are these:
- This is not BJJ class
- Most in the self-defense class could not carry Royce’s jock strap! (most of the guys from the BJJ class probably could not either)
- Most in the self-defense class are not in Gracie’s league (think a good state college team with average athletes vs. Michael Jordan)
In fact, being on my back was as uncomfortable and as lost as I’ve felt in years. At least in Kung Fu and Chin Na I had some similar reference points! Being on your back is a totally different game. I also felt all of my 40-plus years being down there. It amazes me that Ed O’Neil was able to get his black belt in BJJ at his age. I now have new respect for him!
Anyhow, here’s a video that is as basic as I could find. Most that I found focused on UFC-type submissions from the guard. That was not this class!
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