Sunday, October 30, 2016

Distance is game changer

One way to organize training is by your distanse from opponent.

Save distance is when your hands can touch each other when straight. It's a gracie jj way of measuring. It means that opponent has to step closer to kick you.

If you are in rim distance ( Rodney King's) measure for CM1 game. Rim distanse is when opponent can reach your block, but not your chin:-) Opponent has to step to hit you.

CM2 is punching distance. Not a good place to hung around.

Then it's clinch and takedowns.

In ground you have three distances: feet, knees and elbow frames...
Also chest to chest and then you are in trouple.

One vs 1000 - do we need 10 000 reps

Why do I train? Not to be the best competitor in set rules, but for fun and physical conditioning. To be in shape. I don't value the self defence aspect either. Don't really need it, but friendship that comes with combat sport is valuable.

I think I need to make my game much more simple...very simple...almost not even thinking anything.
If a boxer drills a simple move like a jab all his life...why should I try to take on 1000 techniques? and can't apply any. Maybe just during drilling or next month, but should the technique stick with you.

I just did some old karate stuff and I had the moves. Not same but still...and the break has been 20 years or so...

So I need to figure out what the fight is all about in clinch and ground game. It's not about doing technique...totally wrong way to learn is to learn a large number of submissions or escapes/sweeps. It's so stubit that I'm angry with my self for going along with it. I should have known better from the beginning, but I listened to local clubs instructors. Now, also they have grown to understand that previous approach was very wrong. (They have a SBG instructor now:-)

But I need an old mans game. Very very simple. Just enough to keep me save and pointers how to turn it around...maybe like Dale gives very simple concepts for sweeps. Not the sweeps. Just concepts.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Pullups and strength training

I am feeling tired today, but I went to gym and did a light workout. I was surprised that I did a new record on pullups (chinups) 17 clean ones. It's my goal for this autumn so not bad and not even recovered from workout sessions.

I'll be changing to next period which is more strenght and muscle. This was more stamina.

But no grappling, just few clips and a comment on GG2 forum.

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Recovery day - simple is difficult

Today is my day off. I'll be watching some clips after this, but I have to clear my head first.

What's the reason for my training? Mostly it's to keep in physical condition and maybe even fight back dementia by remembering techniques and reating to it. One big thing is to be mindfull during training - and very much during sparring and rolling. And relaxed and carried away again:-)

To make my training more fun I'm trying to make it more simple. I know that I'd pick up all the moves, if I'd have two sessions a day rolling and maybe one 12 round session of sparring, but it's not going to happen. Next four months I'll get about two sessions of low skill rolling per week and same amount of sparring. I think it might not even keep my current skills up.

So I need to make things simple, but it is very difficult for a person who has drilled zillion techniques thinking that "devil is in the details". Now it's all about concepts and flowing from situation to another. Concept based thinking is all about aliveness - it just don't work with out opponents reactions. So making it simple is also making it difficult to learn! I don't have enough rolling time and karate students can react to pressure same way as a seasoned bjj guy. (So I'm getting wrong answers in my few rolling sessons.)

But do I break a sweat - yes. Do I have fun - yes. So what seems to be the problem? I still have an inner need to be good and even challenge younger guys... I don't know why, but I like to win or atleast feel like I am surviving. I don't care a bout tapping once or twice during a roll, but continues clapping is annoying.

OK head is cleared. Take some deep breaths and dive in instructional clips - standup, clinch,ground!

Friday, October 21, 2016

What did I learn today?

First, three hours drilling is too much for a not so young guy like me...and I have a strength training session coming up in few hours. Not clever.

Second, push pull concept is difficult to understand...I don't know why but it was... I need more tools for this one.

Some basic skills or technique has to be there for student to move - like technical stand up. It's just safe to get up that way.

We will continue training with karate group. Very different concepts...karate does not have much aliveness, but we did get a lot of repetitions in :-) Have to think of it more as a physical attripute development time - not game development...

Mixing karate and Jits

Today is a test. We will have one hour session of Kyokushin karate as a "warm up" and then go to yesterdays drills. Same drills 1) pummeling for double unders, taking back, single leg or head lock
2) half guard - getting opp back to mat (shoulder of justice) and opp getting back to deep half
3) open guard opp standing and feeling. Idea is to feel the pressure and react to it.

Yesterday my instructions where unclear so I will try to formulate what I want.

First drill

First drill is "how to start a mats". Engaging for pummeling should not leave an opening for shooting a single leg of double leg. It's important to get a good starting angle straight from beginning? (What's a good angle and how do I get it and where to go from there... future questions :-)

So it's important how you get the clinch and what kind of clinch. Yesterday we drilled over under and today we will continue with it. Just to make it a little more simple. So what am I thinking. First, can I catch opponents hand? Any way - like grapping it or catching it in my armpit - and then push it to his body. It opens a way to his back - or single leg. If I push opponents arm towards his body and he is aple to resist it, it can open a dive under arm to take his back. (This is a good 1 - 2 -1 last one is if he sees the dug under early and pulls his elbows down, then we are back to pushing his arm against his body.) Remember to use lat pull.

So first was catching opponents hand - in armpit or just his wrist. (Maybe this is enough for one day? What is the situation when you don't catch his wrist? How does he move or react? Maybe it's a situation when he shoots and you sprawl?) BUT yesterdays drilling had more elements like double under. Very hard to get... and a front pinched head lock, which is easy to get and also takedown is easy, but risk is getting your back taken after your takedown. When to go for douple under hooks in pummeling? It has to be a reaction for pushing opponents arm down! I do a lat pull and as he stops the motion I will push his arm against his body and pummel in when he resists my push? Maybe...

Head lock is when he keeps his arms locked tight to his body and does not let me have an underhook. Head lock needs a twist - a pinch to break his posture otherwise you are going for a flight.

So what is my instruction... Drills starts from over under clinch - pummel and do lat pulls. Move your opponent - also push. Keep a good posture. Stay grounded. (Okay.. to many already).

Second phase -  catch opponents hand in your armpit or grap wrist and lock it to his body. (Take his back or do single leg or lift him with your hips.) I think here is where we stop and discuss opponents reactions to getting his arm pushed or locked to his body. I think my reactions would be to move backwards which would open a pinched head lock attack with a small "uchi mata" type of breaking balance...

Second drill

Second drill is a half guard situation - not my drill (Every one can contripute and this is from Juho.)  Both bottom and top players have roles. Skills are flattening opponent and shoulder of justice. For bottom person getting pressure of from shoulder of justice and fighting to get to side and then deep half. (Might be good to scrample to get the deep half - like postional tips? but for drill, it's top players turn to fight to flatten...)

Third drill

Ok third drill is about feeling pressure when you are on ground and opponent is standing. My first goal is to get back up. This is not a grappling match and when kicking and punching is involved, I don't want to be sitting or on my back. So if no pressure, do a technical stand up atleast to kneeling position. If opponent pushes you to your back (Pushing your head, chest of lifting you feet.) You want to keep you feet between you and your opponent. Free his grip and get your feet to his thigh or just above his knees to feel his movement. You lift your hips a little to get pressure and the game begins.

So today we will play from situation that you are on your back and feet on opponents legs. Your elbows are open for balance and counter opponents leg throws. How is opponent going to pass?
Lifting your legs. Throwing them to side. Pushing them down? And your reaction... If he steps back  - no pressure - sit up and stand up. If he pushes your legs down - sit up (arm drag or scoot away to stand up) If he throws you legs to side - try crazy legs aca leg pummeling.) If you miss - always grilled chicken and knee to the side opponent is passing.

My instructions...none :-)
We will solve problems when they appear :-)

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Something to learn from todays session

Ok, feeling was good, but biggest potential for improvement is instructios. Instructions should be very much shorter and clearer. I need to get the show going on faster and with smaller steps.

Just give a simple goal and see what happens. I should not show the technique. For them to copy me technique, is not the goal. Goal is to learn a concept and understand it in own movements.

Now I worked like a traditional instructor. I showed a drill and others mimiced it. Ok, I tried to give to concepts, but it ended up being too long discussions.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Starting to build the system at practise

Principal of development

Don't solve problems until they appear. Keep it real and playful - progressive resistance - aliveness.
Always posture - pressure and go with the flow. (Have to be two directions to go with the flow...)

Three games: stand up, clinch/takedowns, groundwork

Tomorrow I'll do my first training session with this new approach.

Standup -  will be an introduction to CM1 game. I think we will just try to keep the distance all the time in "rim" and work on CM1 blocks and posture. Work legs on moving...

Clinch game - pummeling to get a dominate posture? Double unders, slip to back, single leg, quillotine, russian 2 on1, head lock, kimura grip...?

Ground game - guard game from bottom. Different frames and distance. Keeping midrange and reseting frames - getting back to safe positions?

What are the ideas

Keep safe - defense first.
Allways control 3 - 4 points :-)
Get a better angle.
Let him do the work? Wait for a reaction...
Study (listen) to opponents preassure.
Breath - be relaxed - don't muscle - use gravity.
TAP early

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Random thoughts on solo drills

I need to collect some most basic solo drills

  • Grilled chicken around the world (SBG name for safe posture on your back)
  • Grilled chicken - single leg takedown
  • Turtle - granby roll - grilled chicken - knee rule - crazy legs
  • closed guard: grunch, hip bump, airoplane ( heavybag between legs?)
  • shadow roll
  • Ukemis all directions
  • Kicks around the world (windmill drill)
  • heavy bag
  • shadow boxing - sparring
  • deep stance - shiko-dashi ( 1 min hold?)
  • Rope
  • (Shadow sparring in three games: standup, clinch, ground? )
    • What's the triggers? Reactions? Compinations? 

What is the purpose of drilling?
- physical attributes
- mental health (mindfullness)
- technical skills: - recall - automate routines ("safe postions" or home base)

Monday, October 17, 2016

Starting to develop from drilling

Drilling alive

Technical development might need some dead drills, but I'd like most partner work be alive with progressive resistance. You don't have to go all in to practise timing, but there should be always atleast two directions or options to goto to make it more realistic. I think learning to feel pressure and balance are key skills.

Drills for standing 

Semicontact karate - first technique wins?
Crazy Monkey boxing (have to check if I can use this name...)

Drills for clinch

Pummeling fight
Judo randori? as uchikomi? Flow judo?

Drills for ground work

Passing guard - or just trying to pinn opponent
(version only hooked grips - no fingers)
Escaping... (progressive resistance)
Flow drill - sweeps and escapes
Minigames: pocket drills, small technical issues like standing when in opponents closed guard, resisting opponents douple leg smash pass...

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Three games - standing, clinch, grappling

One way to make a situation easier is to slit it to section and most commen in fighting is to do it according to distance of opponent. Long range is stanging. You could have trappling before clinch, but it's not so common and last is ground work.


Next step would be to find safe games fro standing, clinch and grappling. For standing I like Rodney Kings approach Crazy Monkey Defense. I am not a CMD instructor so I will not use that name and very likely I don't really understand it the way Rodney uses it. So I will call it something else like "alive heavy bag" drill. Here the heavy bag will punch you back:-)


I have drilled some pummeling games, judo breaking balance and ofcourse uchikomi randori. This is hands down the least known element for me. (Maybe I really need to go to aikido again to get more ideas... aikido has no resistance... I want timing so it's not a direct answer, but might give inspiration.) Also there are variation of different rules of wrestling like "mongolian wrestling or sumo" to take ideas from.

Ground work

Grappling but later it should include punching, too. Maybe the game is:
  • Can you pass the guard vs keep in control
  • Can you control opponent ( in side control, side mount, back..) vs escape
  • Can you submit opponent


Goal of drills or mini fights should be to teach concepts and timing, but not to teach bad happits. So the rules should take in account that in final stage punching is allowed. Games/drills should have an easy assesment - winner is easy to see - clear criteria for when game is over. Criteria should improve technique or be a very solid position. ( I am thinking of chest to chest and having shirt with a circle sticker on chest - when stickers touch and opponents back is on mat - it's over.)

Game should have allways atleast two directions to prevent stalling. (So just laying on the mat with "home a lone" posture is not what I want - Maybe I need to put "stickers" to knees too, to get knee on belly responces :-)

Next step

I think I will work on entry level games on each area - stand up, clinch and ground. Games should be so simple that 8 years old and also 58 y olds can do it, with out technical knowledge of punching. (I would like punching to be technically correct and not just pushing arms straight or playing tag... for me it's been an annoying feature in CM games, but fun part of sparring equals things up.)

BUT drills/games should not teach bad technique ...Bad technique is when you don't have a realistic image of the most times in aikido ... or BJJ in that matter. (Assuming you think it has something to do with self defence and not sports.) 

So am I building a system for self defence...or sports? Neither I think or both if you like. Mostly ideal would be to have fun and keep in good physical condition - and rules should mimic reality of fight or atleast keep you always in 80 - 20 advantage.

It should teach you to be safe and manouver to postions that are in your favour.
It should increase strength, stamina and agility ( balance)...
Make you feel good...

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Maybe I could start making a new Jits?

What if I plan a new Jits that has progressive resistanse (aliveness) from lesson one...
Kind of learning game ...that would at final stage be like full Jits with punches and all.

Make your own Jits

I watched a multiple world champ webinar yesterday. I've followed his lessons for three years now. I know his game, but it's his game.

I also bought a six hour course on Jits for any one and thats not quite my Jits either. Closes to what I can do is Stephen Whittier's   approach. Stephen is SBG coach like Martin Aedma who lives and coaches here in Jyväskylä where I live. So a lot of answers are very near, but answers are to wrong guestions. Martin is a top competitor - I am an old jitska who wants to keep in fair physical condition. Don't get me wrong, I want to get better, but I don't have 10 training sessions per week to refine all the details like Martin or any serious competitor needs to have.

I need to figure out an easy concept base learning plan that has clear ideas that I do remember and can build on. I think I don't need any subs for a while - just passing, pinning and recovery if I loose my top position.

Very much waiting to read Jason Scully's new conceptual fundamentals... It might have good building blocks to my "new" game... It's not new, just very little refinement to old one. Basically I am learning to move :-)

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Get your thinking mind away

When you think, you are late. When you are late, you muscle. When you use muscle, you get tired. When you get tired, you loose. This sounds very much like Rodney King, but it's actually for Saulo Ribeiro.

Way to not think is not to antisipate opponents move, but more like feel where he is going. Ofcourse you need to have a lot of repetition to be sharp and instictively know all the posibilities. You need to stay in presense. Not what is going to happen or what just went wrong. It's the moment that counts.

Also staying at the present moment relaxes you. Breath, be relaxed, have fun...and tap.

Monday, October 3, 2016

It's just for fun

I have had some hassle at work and it's still going on.

I am getting to mat today. I've been able to do some boxing during this break and I'll use boxing as a warm up today also.

Leading idea for next half a year will be FUN. I will try to get to mindfullness, too. It's an idea of keeping at present moment - no antisipation of opponents reactions or moves - just rolling and punching by the feel of it. (Very much opposite what I have been doing.)

Today I'll start with Monkey Sau - a drill by Rodney King. After opening closed guard you feel opponents legs and move accordingly. If it goes well, we will go to recovering guard when opponent has passed your legs and closing in to side control.

My current inspirations are Stephen Whittier BJJ Plus 40 (Pillar concepts) and Rodney King's Crazy Monkey Defence.