Friday, 13 May 2011

Day 120

I think my world cup aspirations are lying in tatters. The ligament in my arm is either torn or sprained. If it was sprained it would have been better by now, so I've got about 3 months of non-jiu-jitsu months ahead of me.

My one hope is that it is only sprained and that because I only waited 4 weeks instead of 6 weeks to start training again, and continually only rest 4 or 5 days here, or a week there, I've only strained it and not given it long enough to heal. This sounds unlikely, but you don't know how stupid I am.

Let me give you an example, on Wednesday I went and trained at Gracie Barra Bristol, and can I just say at this point, I've never been more terrified in my life.

The Slaughter House? Ok I wasn't that scared. I'm liking the whole image.
I was pleasantly surprised when I walked in not to find people pulling guard on a bloody animal carcass hanging from a meat hook in the center of the matted area or practising over extending their arm bars on meaty cows legs with tendons popping all over the shop. None of that however, just some good, clean, family friendly jiu-jitsu being practised here. So back to my stupidity.

18.30: I'm going, but I'm not rolling. Just the technique.
19.00: Oh no, not the warm up. I hate the warm up. Why is it the more I get into jiu-jitsu, the less I want to run around in a circle and practice hip escapes and sit-thrus? Well it's just this and the technique tonight... it's a shame I don't really enjoy this. Then its just the technique I'll enjoy because no sparring.....
19:09: Dizziness from forward rolls, attempts to keep down food which I intentionally ate 2 hours prior to training and dread that we're going to do backward rolls soon.
19.18: A bit of positional sparring to introduce the technique and help us understand why the technique is relevant. Damn you Geeza! Damn you for your effective teaching methods and for making me confront my inner weakness at this early stage in the game.....
19.19: Well it is just positional and Luke (partner) knows I'm injured and is pretty respectful guy, we're not going to go at 100%. Note at this point, while this statement is true, even if Luke had been a 100kg beef cake, prone to the occasional bout of rip your arm of armbar roid rage, I would have made a similiar internal decision about positional sparring.
19.25: Positional sparring was great. Nothing to aggressive. Arm feels great.
19.48: Good technique. Well explained... more positional sparring. This doesn't count as rolling. It's positional. Positional sparring in which, even though we'd just been practising it, I managed to catch my new partner with the sweep. Great stuff.
20.00: Start of the nogi class. which was followed by nogi technique
20.40: Rolling. Well I'll just be off then guys. See you. Byeeeeee. Actually I'm rolling. How did this happen? But I rolled with a white belt and even though he was bigger and stronger than me, I was a lot quicker and managed to get to his back very quickly from there I didn't need to worry about my arm too much.
21.00: Session finished. No hurt arm. Good stuff.
21.01: Start POST training sparring. How did this happen? I have said this before but I will say it again. Why am I such a tit?

Now during this roll, none of the following was the fault of my opponent, it was all my fault, especially given the fact that I was a blue belt and he a white. He was lighter than me, but strong and athletic. And after about 30 seconds, in which he tried to pass guard and I ended vainly gripping stubbornly to his arm in a failed attempt to take the back... it was at this point that I new this was not going to be a light roll. I didn't tap though, I just squeezed harder.

Later on in the roll he latched onto my bad arm. And went for what I like to call a text book non-armbar. It's when your passing and they are attempting to arm bar the wrong arm for the way their legs are and you usually end up with them in turtle, grabbing your arm and you on top. Of course there is the odd stage in-between the start and end point where you need to rotate your arm and move your body, which is never easy when someone strong and determined has a hold of your arm. I didn't tap, even though I was stressing my arm, and I knew I wouldn't be tapping due to having been caught.

No wait, more importantly it's training. Training is where you tap. But still in the back of my mind I'm thinking. This isn't an arm bar. I try and pretend that if I tap now, he'll think that this is a legitimate arm bar and he'll lose in competition when he tries it, but really, on my barely read blog, I am man enough to admit that I was too proud to tap to a white belt.

Now I am not doing jiu-jitsu again until I reach America and hope that it is only a strain. I can have a roll pre-Worlds, roll hard, and then go "wow, my arm is better, it was just a strain". Or more likely, roll and go no still hurting, definitely a tear. Just spectating for me.

Here is a video that I think jiu-jitsuers and no jiu-jitsuers will enjoy

YES! Mental. That actually works in REAL life. Or in Movie adaptations of real life.

And this one just for the jiu-jitsuers

Be advised that if you didn't watch that clip and immediately watch the other parts of the interview... you have been judged.

Unfortunately my camera was out of action when I went to the slaughter house. I will be going again tonight (not rolling, not even training) and if you are, like me, interested in looking at where other people train, then check here at the weekend.


  1. Luke has really impressed me with the level of control he's shown in sparring. Always good to roll with him.

  2. Yes that is true. In forum speak +1 for Luke. I am sure your class will gain momentum in popularity. I am eyeing it up as potential night to get over to Bristol because GB Bath does MMA on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

  3. Would be cool to see you there. :)

    I'm going to be keeping it very basic for now, so probably won't be anything you haven't seen before. Miles teaches on Tuesdays: I'm looking forward to checking out his class myself.