I started writing this post a week ago but I’ve only just managed to finish it. This means I have forgotten a lot of what actually happened so the below is a condensed version of events.
I managed to train on consecutive nights last week at Yoshin Ryu. First I did the Newaza randori night on the Wednesday and then I also managed the randori night on the Thursday evening. It felt nice being able to train hard on consecutive days as I’ve had so many injuries this year that I really haven’t put in enough sessions to improve. I must admit though that getting out of bed on Friday morning was a struggle as I felt like I had been in a train wreck.
Sensei Dave took the Wednesday night Newaza class and despite it being rather hot (by UK standards) he still had us warm up properly doing pyramids. This entails running up and down the mat doing first one sit, one squat thrust and one press up then you run up and down the mat again but this time you do two of each and so on until you get to ten of each. Anyway my double weave gi was at this point saturated in sweat and ready for the next part of the class which focused on a couple of options when you are unable to finish a juji-gatame from the top position, so basically the below position.
I guess you could use this if your opponent had a very strong grip that you were unable to break. Anyway from the position above you slide your right leg in-between uke’s arms so that it is over their right arm but under their left. At this point you remove your left leg from over their head and lay it on the floor behind them. Uke’s normal response to this is to seize the moment to escape and sit up thus giving you the opportunity to slide your left leg behind their head. You then simply link your right with your left leg and get the san-gaku-jime.
We got to drill this technique a number of times, enough so that I think it will stick with me, which is a good thing.
I sparred with a number of guys at the end wearing various coloured belts so that I was able to practice my submissions one minute and my escapes the next. My roll with Sensei Dave was particularly good as he manages to operate at a level just above the person he is sparring with.
Thursday nights randori night was equally as hot as Wednesday’s, added to that I had the ache and bruises from the previous night’s class but I managed to have a very productive lesson nonetheless and took away a few things.
1) I did randori with a newly promoted 1st dan and wasn’t far off the pace. I was able to successfully throw him with uchi-mata and tani-otoshi.
2) Sasae-tsuri komi ashi is one of my favoured techniques and usually I use a normal right handed grip and throw using my left leg to block ukes right foot. An opportunity arose, admittedly against a yellow belt, to throw using the same right handed grip but this time using my right leg to bloke ukes left foot. The result was an airborne uke and a technique I will be trying to improve on. The below video shows both entries in to this throw as well as a nice set up using O-uchi-gari.
3) As I’m not good enough to throw people using unconventional grips I need to improve on my grip fighting and work on some strategies. This becomes apparent when I spar with higher grades (Brown and Black Belts)