Today we went over submissions. The ankle lock, the baseball choke and the straight armbar from top-turtle position.
The straight armbar was a good review. It could easily be escalated to several different submissions depending on how bottom-turtle defends or fights the attempt.
I got swept a lot during our positional sparring. Let’s see what I did wrong.
So How’d Sparring Go?
First, I went in against a two-stripe blue. He didn’t keep me in closed guard and I was in the process of posturing up to pass when he swept. I had no grips to control his legs, so surprise, surprise, he pulls a basic scissors sweep on me. Always have grips.
The next opening I go in, it’s up against a four-stripe blue. He immediately puts me in spider guard and I free one arm and start working on the other. He tries to sweep me a few times but I would adjust my weight or push off a hook. Eventually I see an opening for me and commit to it. I posture up and free my other arm but he transitions nicely to a sweep by entrapping my right leg limiting my movement.
I could have fought it by basing my weight, dropping a level and stepping back with my left leg, but since it was my right leg that was wrapped up I stood there and let him have the sweep. When I postured up I didn’t have control of his hips. I was heading over to his left side, had a grip on his left gi pants and failed to push that grip away. Had I done so he would have had a much more difficult time setting up the sweep.
The last time I went in it was against a white belt who was probably on the higher end of the next weight class above me or at the least on the lower end of two weight classes above. He kept me in closed guard and slowly broke down my posture, setting me up for a triangle. Before he could lock it in, I used the opportunity to pass, gave up too much space, he got me in half-guard.
I played with the idea of slapping on a baseball choke and by doing so I gave him enough time to place me in x-guard. I checked his top leg, pushed down on it and gave myself enough room to step over or step back but – as is the case with x-guard – my right leg was stretched out and secured by a death grip. I sat my weight on him and gave him the sweep. Don’t pause to think too much about it. In fact, don’t pause. Your sparring partner will take advantage of it.
I really don’t care about “losing” all that much. Mostly, I care about learning. And I care about not getting injured most of all.
I’m still getting my body familiar with all the funky movement only found in grappling, and with the timing and resistance that only comes from sparring. So it’ll be a slow process.