9 Sept 2009

Minced Meerkatsu for breakfast, lunch and dinner

Gosh, what a whirlwind past few weeks my BJJ and MA life has been. First up, I wanted to say again what a great day we all had at the official opening of the Mill Hill club. For me, it was a great chance to meet up with BJJ friends I have not seen in a while, or indeed, met only online.
I also got to get quite a few rolls in - well in four hours of BJJ even I can't be that lazy and avoid rolling.

Training update
Sparring with Carmen Jahnke (female brown belt from Germany) was a great experience. Fluent, technical and pretty strong, Carmen made mince-meat of me. She is the perfect example of someone who uses jiu-jitsu smartly to get into great positions and submit without overpowering.
Carmen hopes to get back into competitive action early next year and I am really keen to follow her progress.

I had a great roll with Matt Benyon of Martial Farts fame. He documents our hilariously half-serious-trying-to-kill-each-other grappling session here. And photo above to prove I am a drama queen, as well as a poor BJJer.

But rolling with unknowns is my nemesis. One chap, Rich, came to the opening day without his kimono so I could only roll no-gi with him. Now I might be able to play ok using the gi, but nogi, I am a child stuck in quicksand. And he made mincemeat of me too.

Finally, I should mention my old training partner Ozy. He has recently come back from Brazil where he trained in a number of world class gyms and I was worried he would completely and utterly destroy me. But there lies the crazy paradox that is BJJ - one day you can suck and tap at the merest sight of a gust of wind, and the next, you are holding your own against top level competitors. Ozy's trademark moves are his De lariva and x-guard tricks, which I kinda knew, but perchance, during our roll, I slipped into high half guard (my knee across uke's torso) and he was rather stumped for a while. I managed to hold him and almost sweep him and, to his credit, he did not use his superior strength against me. It was a good technical roll and I must say, he's really improved a heck of a lot since we last rolled about 2 years ago. And yes, he did eventually make mince meat of me too.

But mincemeat or not. I always thank my partners for the experience of rolling with them. Every minute on the mat is a learning experience and I try not to forget that. By now, I am long over the 'God I had to tap out again' mindset that bedevilled me in the early years. For a start, I am improving enough to be able to ply a few tricks of my own. But most importantly I realise it is the journey, not the destination that is most important. To that end, I thank each and every one of my training partners for helping me improve.

Ninjutsu news
My interview with Simon Yeo for On The Mat drew a lot of positive comments so I decided to put my money where my mouth was and ask him to provide a ninjutsu seminar to me and my old trad JJ colleagues. My sensei, Grant, was kind enough to provide his premises so it's game on, here are the details:

Bujinkan Ninjutsu Seminar with Simon Yeo, 12th Dan under Masaaki Hatsumi
Thursday 19th November 2009
CSSC Sports Centre, Chadwick Street, London
19:00 - 21:00
Price: £22.50
Booking by prior appointment only,
please contact: grant.wakeman388@mod.uk
This seminar will introduce ninjutsu
concepts and techniques to students of other martial arts.

Writing news
I wrote a press release for newspapers and magazines about the opening of Mill Hill. The lay-person friendly version was published in a local Mill Hill news website here.
I'm hoping to get a more detailed BJJ-friendly version published in Martial Arts Illustrated soon, so fingers crossed.

About the Author


Author & Artist

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


Matt said...

Good work on the writing, Seymour.

I also seem to remember the meerkat choking me out on at least one occasion!


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