Florida, like most of the U.S., is experiencing mind-boggling temperatures. One day it’s hot and the next day it’s cold. I think this had something to do with the classroom temperature on Friday. It wasn’t exactly scorching inside but it felt ‘swamp-like.’
Warm-ups consisted of a light jog, rolls, shrimping and stretching. In drills we worked on a takedown from behind, an X-sweep and 2 variations of the X-sweep. Those 2 variations were ‘killer.’ Professor Smiley showed us how to perform a variation of the sweeps where we turn upside down and then spin around again for a triangle choke. I didn’t know I could perform those techniques because I am not as flexible in my back and hips as I would like to be. But I was able to do it with little struggle. Later I was lucky enough to have Prof. Smiley demonstrate the technique on me during ‘sparring.’
I rolled with Prof. Smiley first and we started on the ground. Good news first, I was able to use the sitting up guard pass he showed me last week. He complimented me on the pass and said for a second he was ‘stuck.’ I had solo drilled the pass all last week so I was happy that I was able to pull it off. Although I tapped constantly, I was still able to use some of the techniques that I had been drilling at home to varying effect. I have been trying to concentrate on not lying flat on my back, using the umpa (sp), sensing escapes from the half-guard, etc.
My next roll was with Art (blue belt). The main thing I want to say here is that Art is very good at tapping people out from his guard. He maintains a Youtube page that maintains his exploits. So I spent most of my time defending his attacks from guard. I was able to use a arm bar defense that I learned from Dave Camarillo. (It’s on my video side-bar page.) I drilled that technique at home as well because with the gi I needed a different set of techniques to defend them.
All in all, good practice. I am seeing little improvements. But if they keep occurring they will one day be grand improvements.