Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Finding the Sweeps

Another week of butterfly guard work.  Today was the three basics---stand (framing the face to stand and base), sweep (threading the underhook when the opponent stops your bottom leg and landing a basic butterfly guard sweep), and submit (scooting back into a brutal guillotine when they re-weave the underhook).  First, though, we worked with a few single-leg options and grip breaks, and a standing americana from a whizzer grip.  Lots to take in, and pretty dependent on your opponent's defense (as far as when to go for the americana and when to just throw the poor bastard).  We ran out of time at the end of class to try to implement them, but I worked a little bit with new Jeremy and then with Klint.

I have a new mission:  focus on sweeps.  I love submitting people off my back; in fact, tapping people from guard was one of the things that led me to start raining jiu jitsu in the first place.  But that can't be my only option.  It leaves me on the bottom, and when I fail I'm in a terrible spot.  I need to be able to reverse positions, get on top and work to tire him out from there.  So working with new Jeremy, that was my goal. I went to guard at the beginning and consciously avoided shooting submissions from my back.  One power sweep, one butterfly sweep, one scissor sweep.  Of course, I'm fairly certain that tonight was new Jeremy's first post-class rolling session.  So this worked out well for both of us---I got a body using a lot of strength against my sweeps so I could focus on technique, and Jeremy got his first losing roll in.  I was a bit sloppy, and I wasn't too pleased about that.  It was very easy to get into an advantageous position after I swept, though, so once I tighten my technique, it will be a very useful tool to add to my quiver.

After that, I spent a few minutes rolling with Klint.  Of course, I got waxed a few times and I couldn't get to any position where I could mount any attack of my own.  That, of course, is the name of the game, and Klint is an expert.  Apparently, he's got the best guard among all of Camarillo's black belts.  That's why Dave sent Jeremy Anderson up here while his broken hand healed---so that he could train with Klint and improve his guard.  In his guard, Klint can tap you with ease, but the most impressive part of it (when on the receiving end, anyways) is how you feel pretty grounded and stable, and suddenly you're floating and twisting in the air because he applied the slightest pressure with his inside hook.  The hooks are a huge part of his game.

I have a mid-term tomorrow night, and I should spend more time tonight re-running through my outline, making sure that I know where to turn for which kinds of problems.  This unfortunately means that I don't have the time to dig deeper into the specifics of Klint's game and compare it to rhetoric and language.  But that's something that I will do soon.  Because being able to explain something such that other people can understand it shows that you yourself have a functioning understanding of it.  And I want to get to that place mentally while I work to get there physically.


  1. I think it's a great idea to focus on sweeps. I started doing that during my zero subs experiment and it really paid off.

    By the way, I remember you saying you were going to review the Keiko Raca. I've been thinking about picking one up because I've heard they're good for tall, thin builds. Is a review forthcoming?

  2. Gi review should be up by the end of the weekend. Mid-terms keep messing with my schedule.