10 Jan 2009

2009 - Year of the Standup

A new year and a new gi. My new Faixa Rua BJJ uniform arrived yesterday. It is a bit on the big side so it will have to undergo a rigorous series of hot washes in order to shrink it to my exact size. Shrinking gis is a dark art that is not without its dangers. Boiling hot washes with subsequent high heat tumble drying can fray the stitching and cause collars with rubber inner linings to melt. Too much hot washing can also cause the different segments that make up the whole uniform to shrink and fade at different rates, resulting in a lopsided patchwork effect. Oh and lets not forget the initial salt bath soak to make the dye permanent and the sewing on of patches. Yes, gi preparation is a bit of a hassle but when some uniforms can cost hundreds of pounds, its definitely worth the effort.

The new year also brought in a big surge in students attending my JJ club. Some new faces, some old timers and it was good to see them all. Although my JJ club follows a strict laid out trad JJ syllabus, I have a lot of students who arrive extra early to take part in sport JJ training. Since there are about half a dozen guys who also train BJJ, it makes sense that we concentrate on BJJ drills and it's a very popular segment to the class. But I am wary of appearing to just be a club that practices BJJ-lite. The heart of the club is based on self defence work and the syllabus, so we tend to go over techniques that relate to our self defence work, or techniques that we can use in our version of the ground fighting rules. OK, sometimes we try the flash stuff too, but not often. At the end of the day, at least we get to practice a little live sparring, which I think it important for everyone, regardless of style.

Relating to that is my new found admiration for judo. I've been doing a bit of stand-up grappling at BJJ class recently thanks to the judo black belts there and also a bit at my JJ club. Coupled with my fascination with the Dave Camarillo book, I'm really getting in to it. Judo throws are a bit like my trad JJ throws, only you have a fully live resisting partner and you have to fight for good grips, so its pretty tough. If I have time I might see if I can find a local judo club to develop this a bit further. Yes, 2009 looks like it will be year of the stand up.

About the Author


Author & Artist

Meerkatsu is the artist name for BJJ black belt Seymour Yang.



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