Large class. Phantom BJJ is growing every week, which is great to see. I ran class with Scott Y, which is always fun.
When I do the warm-ups, I’m trying to mix in some different drills to keep things interesting. I have a copy of Stephan Kesting’s Grappling Drills DVDs which, honestly, sat on a shelf for about 2 years. I cracked the cellophane and am now wondering what took me so long. It’s terrific. The DVD is well organized, and there are a ton of different drills, both solo and partner. While I’m familiar with many of them already, there were a ton I’d never seen before. I plan to work a few new ones in whenever I get the chance.
Following warm-up, I took the white belts and Scott worked with the blue belts and up. We have several white belts, and it’s a good opportunity to go over the basics. So, we worked an old Foster BJJ standard. I started by going over good side control, both top and bottom.
Starting with basic head control, top guy is blocking bottom’s hip with his knee and focusing on driving his shoulder into bottom’s chin in a control position. Then switching to a thumb-in grip behind the head and switching to block the hip with the other hand. We talked a lot about controlling the head, keeping your hips low and thinking about pressure and being heavy. I’m sure we’ve all experienced guys who weigh 150 lbs that feels like 200 lbs. And the opposite is also true. Some big guys aren’t as “heavy” because they don’t keep their hips low, leave space or they try to create pressure with their arms.
From that control, we worked a paper cutter choke that is very high percentage and hard to defend. From that position above, move to north/south keeping the grip behind the head. Bring the hand that’s blocking the hip up and control the bottom guy’s arm. Moving to north/south actually creates space to swing the elbow around the head, then move back to side control and finish the choke.
Looks a lot like the technique below. A few variations, but the details he points out are right there with what we worked. Focusing on driving the elbow to the mat and then widening out to get the choke. I also like that his hips are low on the mat, the way I tend to do it. I’ve seen a lot of guys who bring their knees up, which is fine, but for this technique, I like the weight. Anyway, good video of a very similar set up to what we worked yesterday:
There are a lot of ways to finish. I like to sprawl my legs back and drive my hips to the mat as I move to north/south and keep them there as I swing back for the choke. Chris pointed out that widening out the elbow is important to get the finish, as well.
Good class, overall. We have a couple of guys from Phantom BJJ competing on Saturday at the Revolution, along with a lot of guys from the Foster BJJ and Combat Sports and Fitness. Looking forward to seeing everyone.