Wednesday, October 22, 2014

A Stripe? That's pretty cool!

So, for the first two years of my BJJ career I did only No-Gi, so no stripes, and no belts. Then when I trained with Alliance I didn't get any stripes. I went from white to blue, and blue to purple. But now that I am training at a Roberto Traven affiliate stripes are a thing, and today I got my first stripe.

I'm actually pretty psyched by it. It's a good signal that I've managed to return to my pre-layoff skill level and I'm now actually getting better at jiujitsu. This is a nice boost for me going towards the New Breed tournament in December.

Today was the same halfguard stuff from monday plus cardio via running back and forth, shooting under one partner, then jumping over them, then getting taken down and the partner doing the running and whatnot. Fun stuff for 5 minutes, then grueling for the next 5.

After that was work from halfguard, 5 minutes on the bottom, then 5 minutes on the top. I hit a couple of Caio sweeps, but I need to work more on forcing the arm to the inside in order to get the reverse scissor sweep and the back take to work, and generally mess with my opponents posture more. I'm too lenient about letting my opponent flatten me out and going for the Caio or setting up waiter sweeps and things.

On top my passing is light years better than it was even before my layoff. Having an instructor who is my size means all of the guard passing tips and techniques are better tailored to smaller people so I've been really able to tune my passing game.

After that I had time for one roll with a 3 or 4 stripe purple who's a bit bigger than I am and is also one of the MMA fighters. He has a solidly intense rolling style with a great mix of clever techniques and crushing pressure. A couple of months ago with I rolled with him I was able to accomplish exactly nothing, this time I was able to generate a sweep, a near sweep, a couple of close guard passes, and defend almost everything. I went down to an armbar that was setup with insanely good pressure, but I didn't feel as completely outclassed as I did last time.

So, getting the stripe felt great, and I'm going to be working even harder now since I still want to have a shot at my brown belt in the next 18 months.

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