Thursday, December 30, 2010

A Typical Training Day For The Gympie Grappler

Thought I'd do something a little different for this blog. This is how a typical open mat training day goes down for me.
I get my gear together, kiss the wife and kids and jump in the car.
Next I pick up my hombre Steve, who comes down for the drive just to keep me company.(what a good mate)
We put on some tunes or listen to a podcast while we roll down to Caloundra which takes an hour.

We roll in to the gym and I say yo to all my homies. I do a quick warm up, then go straight in to rolling.
I like to try all my new techniques out where I can. We help each other out with a few questions on positions we might be having trouble with. Coach might even show us a new technique to help us out. Which today was an escape from the Kimura when you are in halfguard bottom. We roll some more then hang out for a little bit. Then I high 5 all my homies then hit the road back to Gympie. We usually grab some food on the way home. Yes It's usually junk.


So that's how a typical open mat day goes down. Regular class is a bit different, there is a much more intense warm up. Then we are shown a new technique which adds to a series of moves that we have been working on. We then drill that move and then link it with the series. Then we'll finish off with rolling.

Happy New Years!!!

C u on the mat,

Rollin out of 10 and in to 11

Cruised down to training yesterday for my last roll for 2010. Was a good open mat training session, had some good rolls and got some new stuff to work on. One of my training partners destroyed me. He's been on a tear lately. Training down the house and smashing peeps on the mat. It's so cool that he's picked up his intensity towards training. It really helps my game improve.
By him kicking up a gear and really dominating it's forcing me to look at what's going on a bit closer and work out a new strategy then try it out. Once i've figured out a way to slow him down a bit so he can't smash me so bad, I'm sure in return he will adjust his game and so on. It really speeds up the evolution of both our games. So when I'm getting smashed I'm also getting excited. 
Like today while he was on mount or sidecontrol and I was defending myself for about 5mins, all I was thinking about was how am I going to stop this dude from passing my guard in the first place.... then bam! caught in a Kimura. Damn I love Jiu-Jitsu.

I always find that as the year approaches it's end I start having a good look at myself as an individual and what I've achieved over the last year. Usually I don't like what I see. The years after I did my knee the first time playing footy, I let myself get very lazy and let time slip away. But the last two years since I've started BJJ have been awesome. I've achieved a lot on and off the mat. And my potential to achieve so much more inspires me to try harder to achieve more things and at a higher standard next year.
I'm going to compete at least 2-3 times next year. I have to get my weight down, increase my flexibility, increase my squeeze power and of course get my competition game technically and mentally tight. My game has lots of holes in it at the moment and I'm going to work real hard next year on getting it air tight. I'm going to set my self some bjj goals for next year.

I'm going to work on my takedowns at least once a week, compete in tournaments at least twice during the year at under 99kg. I'm going to do Yoga everyday, eat healthily and increase my functional strength.

Nothing to full on there but my weight is currently around the 110kg mark and the first comp could be in March some time. So I've got to drop 11kg in about 2-3 months. So after the New Years celebration I'm going to start getting the weight off. I'll let you guys know how I'm going with it and what I'm going to do to get it off and keep it off.

 Last 'Day Class' before Xmas

So thank you to all my Family, Friends and Team mates for helping me have such a great year and I'm super pumped for a massive 2011.
Stay Safe and Happy New Years!!
C u on the mat,

Monday, December 20, 2010

Last Gradings For 2010

Last night was the last grading night for 2010. I really enjoy gradings nights, everyone rolls with a bit more intensity and it is a real test of fortitude for the team members going for belts and stripes. At our gym grading night consists of having some warm up rolls at the start of class, some of which are real battles, then we line up in belt rankings and our coach tells us which team mates are to step out to the middle of the mat.

It's a total surprise to the person and they better be warm because they are about to get put through the wringer.

Last night we had a 4 stripe white belt and 2 blue belts get called in. Before they started our coach told them that no one was going for a new belt but it was a night for them to feel what it will be like when they do go for there next belt.
So coach matches them up with lower ranked guys first and then works up to them rolling with the more senior dudes over about 8-10 rounds last night was not quite as many rounds I don't think.
I got the privilege to roll with one of our most senior blue belts. I believe he would have got his purple belt a while ago but circumstances has meant he hasn't yet. Our coach gave me the green light to really make him work.

So I went at him like he had stole my last donut. Really trying to push the pace and make him feel my weight. He's an excellent guard player and towards the end of the roll we had a leg lock battle and I've got little to no game in that department so I'm glad I walked away with all my ligaments still attached.
I then got to roll with the 4 striper for his last roll. He has really gotten good in the last month or so, and I reckon he'll be up for his blue real soon. He swept me straight up and got real close to a pass but I scrambled back on top and got a kimura. The kimura come on real quick and I think I hurt his arm. I felt real bad but he gritted his teeth and wanted to keep going. I ended up taking his back and worked for a collar choke until time went. He's getting real good and is an excellent training partner. He really deserves some big ups for his hard work this year.
It was one of the most fun grading nights I've been to. A lot of dudes got stripes on there belts, including a blue belt getting his first purple stripe. Lots of peeps will be stepping up for new belts next year. It's an exiting time on the mat.
C u on the mat,

Friday, December 3, 2010

Finding Inspiration

Training is going good(when i can get there), working on stuff from closed guard. Coach has shown me a couple of closed guard techniques that have really increased my options in that position. I'm loving the set up that he showed me for the armbar. It's all about keeping tight, keeping my opponents posture broken down, keeping my hips free and waiting for the right momentum to go for the sub, the sweep, take the back or if I stuff it up keep closed guard. I've found that if I use my entire body efficiently I can bring my opponent tight to me and work for the sub. Remembering to use my legs, my core and my arms all together is the key for me to pull it off.

It's amazing where we can find inspiration. During the week I had the absolute pleasure to have dinner with one of my mother in-laws family friends visiting from England. He's here to watch the Ashes cricket series. He was an officer in the Royal Navy and was Knighted for his service. The way he carries himself is quiet inspiring. He truly is an English gentlemen and in this day and age we very rarely get to meet such men. I had the pleasure of reading some of his family history. He had transcribed out the history of his Australian relatives. The story tells of how his relatives were sent over to Australia on the early fleets. Reminded me of how lucky we are to live in this day and age. It was extremely well written and made my blogging efforts look like a 2 year old had posted them.
Although in his late 80's he has a terrific memory and a very impressive general knowledge on most things. We also spoke about family and friends. He kept saying how lucky I am and how I must be very pleased with my life. Sometimes it takes someone else to point it out, or you don't acknowledge what is great in your life. I am truly blessed to have the family, friends and team mates that I have. The advise he gave me was pure gold. I really hope I get to speak with him again one day soon.

Keeping inspired or motivated is an on going battle for me but not when it comes to Jiu-Jitsu. I would train everyday of the week if I could but it's not possible for me right now. Why do I have so much motivation to roll but at times I have trouble getting myself out of bed to go to work. I easily slip in to chill/procrastination mode at home and at work and achieve bugger all for extended periods of time.
Passion is what gets me to training, even though it's a 2 hour round trip on a dodgy stretch of highway and takes me away from my family I love for 2-3 nights a week. Even when I talk to someone about Jits the passion starts flowing out of me and I get pumped up. I also think it has to do with the fact that I'm not good at Jits. I really have to focus when I'm on the mat or I'll get my arse handed to me. That feeling of having to strive harder to achieve the level I want to be at, also motivates me to keep at it. I have to find that passion and feeling of wanting to be better in the other areas of my life and apply it.

My son was so pumped when he saw this rainbow. not as much as that double rainbow guy on YouTube though

Please check out my mates blog at
He's a top bloke and a wizard on the mat.