February 3rd, 2016
Justin Murphy is the coach of the Wednesday 8pm BJJ class. If you like spending half an hour delving deep into a single technique and then trying to get it to work in live sparring, you will love his class. As a rolling partner, he’s awesome at giving the perfect amount of pressure so that you are always challenged and never feel overwhelmed. Justin holds the rank of purple belt in BJJ under coach Bill.
If you haven’t been to the Wednesday night class yet, come check it out.
January 26th, 2016
The arm drag is such a wonderful, basic tool for the martial artist. It is a simple way to improve your position from being directly in front of your partner to being at their side or back. Even cooler, it can be applied from standing and the ground. As an added secret bonus, when you really get a grip on the arm drag, the leg drag will drop right into your pocket as well.
In the video above, you’ll see the adult students demonstrating the technique by provoking a push from their partner and then accelerating that push and pulling themselves into a better position. The kids are demonstrating a simpler version, where they simply practice executing the motion against no resistance.
January 19th, 2016
Tonight in sparring class we experimented with fighting from a lead versus fighting from a side facing stance. A lead is definitely the more common stance, the one you will typically see in a boxing or MMA match. I don’t know that I’ve ever seen a side facing stance in a boxing match (although I’m sure someone has done it) because of how severly it limits your ability to throw a cross. And in MMA, it isn’t super common either but it does crop up when you see people setting up to throw a spinning strike.
So why drill something so unusual? Well, if you don’t try it out, you’ll never know if it works for you. The side stance, on the offensive end, can provide opportunities for a side kick and any number of spinning techniques. On the defensive end, it limits the targets that your opponent has access to. One risk of the side stance is that if your opponent blitzes you, it can be tough to muster an effective defense. Another problem is (at least for me), it is harder to stay fluid with footwork (compared to a lead).
Another good reason to drill the side stance is that there are some good fighters who can and will utilize the side stance as an effective part of their game. If you don’t drill it at all, it will come as a surprise when someone uses it on you effectively.
January 15th, 2016
Thursday night in Kung Fu class we looked at three ideas around doing the monkey line drill.
The first idea was to try and be fluid rather than choppy. When you are dealing with multiple problems (people) coming at you at the same time, you can not afford to stand still, set your body and throw a strike. You must move or you will get surrounded.
The second idea was to start as soon as you hear the word go. Again, when doom is hurtling toward you in the form of four other human beings, you can not afford to stand still. You can not afford to stand still at the beginning of the drill, even if you are going to move fluidly for the rest of the drill. Move. Right away.
The last idea we worked was making sure you didn’t get stuck moving in one direction. Often, when people get amped up, they get stuck in a behavior. In monkey lines, sometimes that behavior is always moving to the right. If you always move in one direction, the pig pile will happen. The attackers will find you and swarm you. Yes, you need to move. Yes, you need to be able to adapt and change directions.
To better monkey lines!
January 12th, 2016
Last week, the ground was covered in slushy ice. Nobody showed to the new Tuesday night beginner class.
This week was a different story. So great to see some new faces in the gym, being led carefully through the core movements of CrossFit. Excellent team coaching by Geoff and Clay!