Wednesday 30 April 2014

Class notes: Catch wrestling on your feet

Warmed up with the pummel; just rolling and looking for the different attacks out of this such as the DWL, arm drags, full and half Thai clinch.

Class was split again in two tonight; standing grappling and striking sparring (standing).

DWL defence against a big guy:

It is unlikely that sinking down and doing the palm to palm hip capture will work against Big Ron and others of a similar build we looked at the grip break. When they have the DWL the arm is isolated and disconnected from the body and thus much easier to manipulate. To even this out and take it back you need to integrate the whole body. Clasp the palms and get your hip behind your grip, you will need to step into him to get behind your hands. Now the hand and arms are in a more powerful and structurally string position. You are no longer fighting arm against arm. To break it, punch the hips through and turn. I started to lift but got corrected. Keeping the hands sort of central to you as you punch the hips will make it very hard for him to maintain his dominant position.

Defending the standing head and arm:

Briefly looked at this - fist to neck or speak on the telephone. This will jam your elbow into his neck or shoulder giving you space to breath. A cheeky attack from here is as you turn towards him you can hit your own elbow which will hit him in the head. CI like this as clearly it will not KO him but it will give him something to think about. I have found when your stuff is being messed with it is hard to ignore that, instead most people want to deal with that and then return to a dominant position.

Blossoming flower of oblivion:

This choke can be likened to a very deep bicep guilotene. It might just be the worst cranking choke out there. From the clinch grapple his head goes down and here is the chance for the choke. Punch the arm around the neck deeply. So that you are trying to get the bicep under his chin. We investigated having the forearm across the jaw bone and under the chin, both horrendously effective. For me the absolute key and unashamedly worth repeating is the initial motion to punch the arm around the neck to get deep on him. If I punch my right arm around the neck, my left hand braces against his left shoulder. The very fact that you have gone deep with the choking arm might by itself be enough. There is no space in there for the head so any motion has big effects. To get the right hand on to the left wrist you do not need to crab walk the hand to the wrist. Your right closed fist will blossom open and simply park at the wrist. If he has not tapped yet he soon will. The full completion of the movement is either: get the elbows close as your put all your weight on the back of the neck driving him to the ground to close off on the floor. the second, and more violent option is to suplex him...

Punching entry for head crank:

This is the neck crank Martin showed in the old class many years ago and has stuck with me and one I often think about. To set it up throw a left jab then left hook causing him to cover up, keep your left hand on his cover as you throw the right. Blocking with his left you elbow around his forearm to enter head lock range. If the punching was too complicated a set up, Martin did give us the opportunity to work from wrist control and forearm contact. To get the elbow in range for the headlock, use his forearm as the fulcrum and go around it, it looked like the elbow strike from the powerlines drill a few weeks ago. Arm that is closed to him slides under the chin and the hand goes to the top of his head, rear hand meets at the top of the head with a deep grip. The forearm will be grinding into the temple. To finish the crank lever the hands away and close the elbow together. This will cause the neck and jaw line to move along lines they were not designed to. And if any of the three standing neck crank/chokes we have done (grovit, thumb guillotene, blossoming flower of oblivion) does not work because he stands up out of them then they can stand into the neck crank just outlined.


Tonight we started to spar in incremental and developmental steps: `loose fists, learning pace, all about learning

1. Jabs to the body.
2. Jabs to the body whilst holding the right glove between your jaw and your neck. This was to enhance the feel for the shell. The glove should not fall off when you move, attack or defend. Clearly it did but it really focussed you on keeping that shell tight.
3. One attacks and one defends - defender can't move feet and only uses head, body movement and hands and covering to defend the shots coming to the head and body.
4. As above but now the defender can use movement and the left jab. Also his was to the head and body.

Bloody loved it. It was great to work the protective shell in real time. Jamie's first night sparring too so very proud of him. We chatted lots on the way home in the car and he really loved the sparring too. So looking forward to many more session like this.

Grip sparring:

I feel bad in retrospect when I analyse what I was doing. It was supposed to be grip sparring but I turned into clinch range and was using my head as an additional tool for control. So I apologise to Ron, Trist and Ayyaz for grinding my forehead into you. Tonight was not the night for that and if I messed up your learning time by doing something out of the drill or range I apologise. I guess I just got excited to be in clinching range. I did not listen to the full instructions and heard sparring and grip so went for what I wanted to get in terms of control instead of practising all the grips and controls. So lads I am sorry.

Some other points worth mentioning from Martin's teaching tonight was:

Brief insight into the scarf hold catch version from side control - grabbing your own thigh and cranking on the neck.
Catch wrestling is catching - they move and you catch them in their motion, no need to hunt for limbs as they will come your way. Controlling the pace - only you are in control of you o set your pace so that you can do all day. 80/20 rule - goes above your 80% of effort 20% of the time. Fight in different paces but fight smart, to work well you need to preserve you. Being gassed will have a dramatic effect on your ability to breath, think and act well.
Breathing - when it is getting tough exhale all of your air from the lungs through the mouth. Let the Co2 out and get good air back in.
Control the range - with bones as these do not move. For example in the half Thai clinch. Use your structure to dictate and control the range.
Uppercut detail - brief words about dipping the opposite shoulder to load the uppercut, use the whole body and not isolated arms. When Martin demo'ed it looked like small tight motions, as if the spine is rotating and the punches just happen to be part of the core rotation.
Uppercuts from the clinch - his head is on your shoulder then as you uppercut you will leave a space where you were and now where your punch can go.

Finally, being present. If there is a practise out there that puts you in the moment better than martial arts I would like to know. Nothing else matters, just the moment. Martin rightly said that a lot of what we fear is in the future and is essentially all in our minds. We can't control the future as it is not yet happening. The past has been and gone as we can't affect our past only learn from it. We can only act in the now. Sparring is all about the now. It is both an intensely physical and mental challenge.

Martin is away on a work gig next week so it is guest instructor time again.

1 comment:

  1. Awesome night enjoyed all the sparring, especially the grip sparring and I didn't notice any head grinds so no need to apologise to me. Just having the experience was excellent I have always enjoyed training with people more experienced and better than myself as that is when I learn best.

    Always got to pressure test and sparing is the best way its the closest you will get to an actual altercation.

    Once again a superb blog covering the lesson, excellent.