Monday, December 20, 2010

It's About Dang Time!

For the first time in a while, I had a great night tonight. Things just...worked. And man, did I need it! A couple of things that I was just having a mental block on finally clicked.

One thing that I did for the first time was the knee on belly spinny thing. It was the same one I injured my finger practicing the other day. Well, my injury paid off! Because I was finally able to do it in a live grapple against a bigger, stronger guy! Woohoo!

The key thing for me with learning how to use knee on belly was making myself posture up. I am so used to being low on my opponent. But with knee on belly, you have to posture up and drive your knee into them. I thought of knee on belly as an unstable position, but I am finally starting to learn how to balance and use it a little bit. Still have a long way to go, obviously.

Other things that finally worked: triangle transition to arm bar when I am being stacked and smashed (I realized I was waiting too long to make the transition and that I wasn't shifting my hips right before), defending my open guard by attacking with a straight arm lock as someone comes around to pass and a reverse triangle/kimura thingy (I don't know if these things actually have names). These things may not sound that complicated, but for some reason it has taken me months to get them to work right.

But I also cheated tonight.

For a while now, I haven't been going inverted at all while I grapple. I have an issue with my neck and going inverted was just making it worse. Well, tonight I did it. I will tell you, it felt great to be able to just react on instinct and not have to stop myself from doing stuff. I was able to just flow again.

I wonder if the reason why a lot of that other stuff worked tonight was because I felt more confident. I wasn't hesitant, like I have been, having to stop and think every few seconds.

The bad news is that my neck is a little stiff. It doesn't hurt. But I am not going to do anymore inverted the rest of the week. I'm restricting myself not only because of my neck, but because I need to develop other ways of doing things.

Fabio was telling me about another black belt friend of his who relies too heavily on inverted guard and how he is getting caught a lot now and is having trouble adjusting. He said inverted guard is great, but just like with everything else, it isn't the a perfect game and it has it's draw backs, which is why I need to make myself learn other things as well.

So, I will be back to trying to integrate all the new strategies Fabio has been teaching me. Tomorrow I will probably be back to feeling like I am not getting anywhere, but tonight proved that those feelings aren't true. There is progress being made, albeit slow. It was just great to feel like things were working for once!


Dev said...

I saw a quote in Spanish this morning that reflects exactly what I had planned on writing here in English: "Dijiste lo que yo hubiera querido decir."

You said what I would have wanted to say. :) I had a whole thing planned to comment as I was reading your post, then you figured it out before I had the chance.

Nicely done. :) And congrats on a good day. :)

Rick said...

Does the triangle to arm bar strain your neck? I'm struggling through a neck injury (probable blown disc with numb fingers). The first couple times I felt the numbness jolt happened after finishing the arm bar. Shoot triangle. Opponent postures up high. My upper back/neck is only thing on mat. Then bridge off that part to transition to arm bar. Got the taps, but last couple times got zinged from neck pressure. Think I have to give it up

A.D. McClish said...

The arm bar to triangle doesn't usually tweak my neck, but I could see how it easily could. When my neck is being forced forward is also when I have the most problems. One thing I can think of is to try being a bit further back on your shoulders while you apply the armbar. And try folding your head and neck forward while you lift up your hips, as opposed to bridging back on your head and neck, so the pressure isn't on your neck. Don't know if that made any sense.

A.D. McClish said...

Also, thanks Dev!! :)