It has been a while. I have been very engrossed in work and school and managed to forget about my rag-tag blog for a while. It may be suprising to hear, but I have rededicated myself to jiu jitsu as much as I can muster at this point. Which is roughly 2 or 3 times a week, 1.5-2 hours each time. This fits right about in the range of “hobbyist”. I can say that I do more jiu jitsu than I do anything else outside of work, so for now that is all I can do.
Training has been great…and heartbreaking. It has been great because I feel I am making progress in areas that need attention, and I have managed to stay nearly injury free for the last 3 or 4 months. I am currently around 194lbs (which is not overly portly at 6′, it is not where I want to be). I would like to make it to the 180-185 range. This is a small goal, but not my real focus…
The heartbreak comes from wasted years training. I am a two-year blue belt…growing closer to 3 actually, and I have been a one-stripe blue for around 14 months. Stripes do not matter, but it is definitely an indication of my lack of dedication and time served. I have indeed picked up my training to a more respectable level, but that is not where the feeling of waste emanates.
Within the last two months I have come to a realization about my theories and training habits. I have been doing it entirely wrong this whole time. It sucks to say, but I have wasted alot of time now that I think about it. Showing up, slopping through workouts focusing on the wrong things. It stagnated my BJJ progression and caused alot of my feelings of being “burnt out” with this sport.
*Ported from a post I made on Sherdog Grappling Forum*
I feel that I had spent far too much time as a whitebelt training/studying submissions.
Having good submission technique is great, but without proper positioning it is like trying to surf in your bathtub. I was constantly focused on the sub, and in turn was missing the bigger picture…often attempting to submit from inferior positioning.
Now I work for secure/intelligent positioning and the sub is an afterthought. A chain I would use would be more like…. Trapped under KOB -> Escape to Half Guard -> Escape/Establish Full Guard -> Sweep to top half -> Pass to Side -> Move into KOB -> Take Mount. Maintain mount with backtake option.
If I get put back into half..I work back to side or mount. If i get swept I start over again attempting to plow through the steps until I end up in a dominant top position.
I still take subs if they are there, but that is not the focus. If I feel my base and positioning are on-point the submission comes so much easier. Before I would just get into position close enough to start working the sub. But guys will always catch up to a guy who only looks to submit and has a lousy positional game.
I actually rolled with another blue recently who spent a good 2 minutes and alot of effort attempting to submit me with a side-choke/arm-triangle from under my mount. There was never even remote danger, but I remember thinking while I sat there holding my mount waiting for him to figure out that nothing was going to happen…I thought…”Did I used to do stuff like this?”
No…I probably did much worse….
I just wish I would have figured this out long ago….Soo much wasted time that I can never get back.
I’m sure epiphanies of this sort come multiple times throughout one’s BJJ journey. This just happens to be my first significant realization about how little I know. Everyday I become more certain that I am a “Blue Belt For Life! ”
Thanks for reading the unorganized text spasms I call a blog.
Check it out. Draculino answering questions for TheMouthofMMA.com