Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Pre European Competition Sparring

This post is part 2 of my exciting weekend of training. Following a busy day at S.K.J I headed over to Derby to do some competition sparring for the Europeans. At the time I wasn't really sure if I was even going to go, as I mentioned in the past I felt a bit unsure about my purple belt and where I was at with my BJJ. As I was coming all the way from Brighton Rebecca, one of the girls that trains at GBD, kindly let me stay the night at hers so I felt much more rested up and ready for some training than Saturday.

We arrived at Gracie Barra Derby at 12.30, the club has a traditional dojo feel and has a matted area as well as a caged off section for MMA. As people started arriving I recognized lots of familiar faces and it was great to meet some of the blue and white belts that were new to the sport since I had been over seas. Christine took charge and made sure we all felt welcome, suggesting that we begin with some specific positional sparring and finish with some rolling at the end. This worked really well and gave me a good idea of the area's I needed to work on, girls move a lot differently than men and I think what most of us don't get much practice of is maintaining an on top position and working on attacking.

I rolled with Leoni, who I used to train with at BJJ school, she said I felt much stronger than before which made me feel a lot more confident as she trains and competes at a high level and is someone I have always looked up to in the sport. All in all the training session left me feeling confident in my abilities and I decided to man up and enter the Europeans. I have only done the nogi British open and competed in MMA since getting my purple belt, so I think I need to start challenging myself more to progress and improve my BJJ.

Hopefully there will be more sessions like this in the near future. Sometimes its just nice to meet up with other girls that understand the madness of training in BJJ. Back in Eastbourne I have begun pestering everyone to train some Gi with me, Tolly already had me sparring from standup with Joe and Lee, and I think I have a pretty solid game plan to work.

Some further reading for you Femme fighters article on the Grace Barra Derby girls

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