That's Why We're Called the Lab Rats.

Last night's BJJ sessions at the Labs were amazing, mostly because I wasn't teaching. With Martyn off on holiday in the far east for a couple of weeks, BJJ, No-Gi and MMA coaching responsibility has been passed on to The Labs purple belts. We have our curriculum to work from, but we also have wide margins of freedom within it.

Last night's BJJ fundamentals session covered the postures, pressures and possibilities of the weird and wonderful world of the open guard*. Manik did a great job at controlling the pace and parting with his knowledge. You could tell that here you had:

1. An experienced teacher- by day Manik is a maths teacher.
2. Someone who's just come back from a training holiday in Brazil :)

The second session saw Graeme first delve into the smaller details of a sub-segment of the BJJ open guard, namely the spider guard before drilling escapes and guard passes. I was very excited about this for a couple of reasons:

A, I'd never been shown spider guard properly.
B, I suffer from it often.
C, I hate spiders

Graeme is very good at it. What we have here at the Labs is a fantastic pool of knowledge and we're getting really sharp at the craft of teaching and sharing it. We all have relatively different games, favourite techniques and strategies, not to mention body types and general movement patterns and we all feed into each other’s and everyone else’s pool of knowledge and THAT’S why we are called the Lab Rats.

More than once I heard people rolling next to me on the mat saying: “oh yeah Graeme’s sweep work great with that grip Mike gets on the sleeve”, “the two variations from the scissor sweep we learnt a couple of weeks ago fit right into spider guard” or “Liam is so awesome!”.

Just kidding. I don’t hate spiders.


*For a quick breakdown of spider, de la riva and other types of open guard, check out Stephan Kesting’s excellent article on the subject.

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