We learned guard passes today. Half-guard pass, knee-on-shoulder open-guard pass, gorilla pass, gorilla smash pass, gorilla pass to knee-on-the-belly and movements to secure side-control.
The half-guard pass was the tail end of the z-guard pass I wrote about earlier.
The open-guard pass where your opponent’s knee is up on your shoulder was a simple pass dependent on keeping a grip on the nearside leg to prevent it from establishing a hook. It also uses the secure-side-control movements in case bottom guard pushes at the shoulder to prevent the pass. Head up and dive bomb like a hindu push-up to break the arm support pushing away at the shoulder.
Gorilla pass to gorilla smash pass to knee-on-the-belly was a chain combo. Bottom guard pushes away, gorilla smash (the hindu push-up motion) or knee-on-the-belly.
Then it was positional sparring time.
So How’d Sparring Go?
First I partnered up with a three stripe white belt who was clearly out of my weight class. Since we were going from closed guard to side-control I took it easy. He opened my guard with no problem – he actually elbowed my right knee after I told him lets go easy. I let him pass at least three times before time ran out. When we switched positions, he did the typical pull down on the small guy and attempt a triangle plan of action I’ve been seeing a lot of lately. I sighed, and passed his guard.
He benched me off of him and scrambled for top guard position. I spun and tried to lock in a crucifix. He shucked me off of him as I was rolling forward, and we ended there as time ran out.
I should have secured over-unders when he was in turtle and I’m finding that while my thought process is getting quicker – I usually look around at what’s happening and thinking about techniques to attempt – my reaction time is still slow. Doesn’t help that I’m playing tourist and enjoying the sites when I’m sparring either.
Afterwards I rolled with a three stripe blue. I have yet to get his name, I see him at every class I’ve been to. His technique is good but he’s still jumpy and has a lot of holes I can spot.
We started this round in open-guard with the knee-on-shoulder position, not closed guard. The guy always passed to my left, my right knee on his shoulder. It never occurred to me to try pushing away with my right leg and shifting over to my left side so I’d be in a stronger position to fight the pass until now. See, writing stuff down does help open up the brain to jiu-jitsu.
When we switched positions and I was in top-guard, I stood up and almost passed his guard. Too busy thinking and watching his movements to react or do anything of worth, he eventually got behind me and was about to sweep me to gain back mount when I lowered my base to prevent myself from falling back. So instead of pulling me back he kept his hooks and reached from my ankles and tried to sweep me forward.
That’s when I noticed that he was pulling my feet in a laterial direction and pushing my knees in the opposite direction – the same kind of movement you’d do if you were applying a heel hook. Very bad for the knees. I immediately rolled forward and spun to face him.
My lightning fast barrel roll caught everyone by surprise. Including me. I never knew I had it in me to move so fast, but it felt like my knee was gonna be in trouble so I got out quick.
Instead of telling him, “Hey, dumbass, I don’t wanna roll with you anymore cause you’re dangerous” I said “Let’s take a break. My knee feels funny.”
It prompted concern from Tomari-sensei, plus a remark from a purple belt I’ll address later, but I told everyone I was cool.
Sure enough, the following sparring round that 3rd stripe blue rolled with a white belt and the white belt got his knee messed up.
Screw that 3rd stripe blue belt guy. I’m never rolling with him ever again. Never ever.