Saturday, October 8, 2011

Another Crazy Saturday Night

I'm sure you're looking at this post and thinking "Really? A blog post on a Saturday night?" Despite the fact that I'm 22, I am boring sometimes! AmeriCorps requires participants to average a 43 hour work week, and since my host site wasn't ready on time, I need to make up several hours by doing volunteer projects on the weekends. This means that I've been travelling from New Jersey into Manhattan and throughout the boroughs of New York City doing volunteer projects on the weekend. More often than not, I'll try and spend time with my friends who live in NYC when I'm done with the service project, and by the time I get home, I'm tired! This weekend is being spent with my family, who I rarely see now between getting up early to go to work, getting home late from training, and doing service projects on the weekends.

I only had the chance to hit the mat twice this week. Kind of a bummer, but I had to work late for a couple of nights. Not to mention I had some meetings to prepare for so I went home a little early- how grown up am I!? :D Well, I think that smiley may have negated the grown up factor...

Some people begin BJJ and quickly find out that they either favor a bottom game involving play the open/closed guard or a strong top game, which involves passing the guard and working from side mount or regular mount. I don't think I have ever really favored either approach, but I am feeling much more comfortable from half guard after training with Shaolin. Shaolin is great at half guard, and not only does he show a lot of half guard techniques in class, but I've been forcing myself to get into half guard lately. It's done wonders for my half guard game. I can't say it's my strength, but the gap between my half guard and the rest of my game has decreased tremendously. I no longer feel flustered and frustrated when in half guard, which gives me more confidence when thinking about competition.

Additionally, I've been getting better at the wrestling aspect of BJJ. I'm not doing Palhares style slams, suplexing people, or doing granby rolls around the mat, but I am no longer hesitant to go for a takedown from standing or open guard. I've been getting these takedowns with a pretty high success rate, so I'm happy this is something to add to my arsenal. Adding these aspects to my game has made me happy about my progress in BJJ and it makes me want to compete to see how these new aspects would apply in a competition setting. I believe Abu Dhabi Trials are in the beginning of November. I want to compete, but it all comes down to how much mat time I can get in between now and the event. Plus I can't find the registration page...Regardless, there is a Grapplers Quest event in December in NJ that I definitely want to do.

Oh, and two shameless pieces of propaganda:

1. There is another NYC Women's Open Mat on December 4th. Time and location TBA, but I'm definitely going!

2. Fushida, a Canadian gi company, has just come out with some new gis. They were kind enough to send me their women's gi, which fits me REALLY well straight out of the bag. It's a sharp looking gi and it's nice to see a gi company that supports women in BJJ. They put a lot of time and effort in producing this gi so I expect nothing less than awesomeness. Their new gis will be released to the public in a couple of weeks, so keep checking for updates. Expect a detailed review in the coming days regarding their women's gi.

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