Monday, 27 April 2009

I want a cat fight gear gi!!! I just saw on gringa bjj's blog that a website called make the most amazing custom gi's for girls I want one lol i emailed them to see if they ship to uk so fingers crossed my only dilema now is which one I want they are all so nice! At the min I have a blue coral gi which is ok for competitions its a size A1 and still a bit too big though, I still need to invest in some decent shorts for under my gi, I was practicing passing guard the other day and stood up and my gi pants were half way down luckily everyone was too caught up in rolling to notice but some decent shorts are needed to replace my rubish primarket leggings lol. That is all bak to stats "sigh"

Saturday, 25 April 2009

Ze Marcello seminar

Had a fun weekend of training, Ze Marcello came down and taught a seminar, we worked on loads of sweeps from half guard which was good as I tend to just try and get back into guard from there so I'm going to practice lots of sweeps in the next few weeks! After we all went out for some food and then Alex went out with Tolly and co but I was still aching from Thai so I cocooned myself in our massive bean bag and watched Britain's got talent and south park marathons, Cartman never fails to amuse me ha. Haven't wrote in a while because I have been swamped with my dissertation! scientific research is a pain in the butt I'm meant to be doing my results now but statistics make me sooo enraged and I had to miss training tonight to get get all my graphs and tests done grrrr. I always feel bad when I miss training but at least after the first of May I will have a lot more time I think my new training schedule will look something like this

Monday - yoga 10-11 Bjj 8-9.30
Tuesday - circuit training/no gi
wednesday - Bjj 7-8.30
thursday - muay thai
Friday - muay thai
saturday - Bjj 1230-2 at canton then 2.30-4 at sparta
sundays - bjj at btt in slough/ yoga and rest

now its getting sunny I sometimes have the odd run along the seafront this schedule will probably last about a month of summer hols unless i get the job I wanted which was working at a summer camp as a physical activity co-coordinator although I need to get my CV done asap! I think I will head back to Bahrain for a week to hand my CV in to all the clinics there and see what kind of opportunities there are and if I need any further qualifications. I still am unsure about the plans for next year its so confusing!!! Also got more competitions to train for over summer, although weight isn't such an issue for females in BJJ i'm still trying to keep mine at under 64kg as I seem to be doing well in that weight category in the last two competitions. The next comp our club is doing is at ZT fight skool in Brighton, they are trying to find me a competitor but I think its unlikely,,, they have started doing girls classes there which I want to check out on Tuesdays depending on how much work I get done tonight/tomorrow I will go check it out I think.

Saturday, 11 April 2009

animal drills I love them


I have recently compeated in 2 Bjj competitions representing BTT Ze Marcello, the Bristol open and the Grab and pull in Brighton. So I thought I would give you a run down of how they went. Thanks to seymour yang for taking some pics of my fight at the Grab and Pull comp - check out his blog Meerkat (its in my blog list at the very bottom of the page) for loads of interesting posts and articles :-)

BRISTOL OPEN 2009: I live in Eastbourne,, so getting to Bristol was a bit of a trek which involved us getting up when it was still dark, as I'm a student this doesnt happen very often and I was lucky I had alex to drag me out of bed! So off we set with 40 quids worth of snacks, our gi's and alot of nerves. The journey didnt have the best start with out friend accedentally putting petrol into a diesel car, we got 5 minutes down the road before it ground to a halt and we had to push it to the nearest garage. Luckily we managed to get down there, Pete had to go get his car and tolly had to abandon his at the petrol station. I slept most of the way and woke up to Tolly moaning that we were there waaay to early, he has a cool kid phobia of arriving anywhere too early so we stopped at a caf for some breakfast. As i was way under 64 kilos i scoffed a sauage sandwhich while alex and pete looked on tummys rumbeling away while tolly proceeded to scoff the hugest breakfast I have ever seen. We eventually found the sports center where the competition was, and quickly registered, I was in my gi and ready to go!!!! 5 hours, a million toilet trips and a few naps later the moment finally arrived and i nearvously met most of my adversaries in the loo before we started. There was no weigh in but we decided to be split into weight catergories as it seemed fairer that way. I fought at under 64 but they didnt weigh us at all (grrr to all my healthy eating to make sure i was under 64) My first fight was against a girl alot youner than me but she was really tough she tried to pull gaurd but could only get half gaurd, I won on points when i got into mount at the end. The next fight I had was with a woman who was also compeating for the fisrt time, I think all the agressive training with Tolly paid off as i got the take down passed gaurd got into mount and won with the ezekyl choke! (My favourite move of the moment) The next day was the ultimate division but i think most peopel had gone home so it was only me and 1 other girl, the fight went in a blur she pulled guard and i spent a while trying to get out, finally passed, to half gaurd think i had her back for a while but couldnt finish so went bak to side and won on points. All in all I would say it was a pretty good result for my first competition and I was surprised at how calm I managed to remain, I think when you know you have trained hard that it makes you a bit more confident.

Grab and Pull Brighton 2009
I was glad to hear about this competition as it was so close by! Alot more of our club came to this which was good in some ways but bad in others as I was running around the whole time watching people screaming and generally getting way too over amped,,, haha and being told off by the poor guy that was in change of getting people to sit down. There was 4 girls including me and Sophie who I train with at Canton. The first girl had not been training BJJ long but man she was brutal she was going for the take down big time but luckily I'm used to the guys going mad to get the take down at training so I bidded my time and caught her off balence, I cant remember what happened next but I had her in gaurd and then took her back and finally got to mount somehow and finished with the ezekyl choke (still my fav!).
Next Sophie had her fight but unfortunatly the girl got mount and sophie couldnt escape. My next fight was sooo hard neither of us could get the take down and i was adament that I wouldnt pull gaurd. In the end they gave us a minute extra and i just went mad trying to get single leg take down, It was soo weird I felt all my power go and I just thought hell Im going to lose and then sumhow i felt her weight shift and drove forward and got the take down!!!! The last few seconds were spent fumbelling on the floor but luckily that was it I had won! I was also so proud with our team there was only about 10 of us and i won gold, alex and max shared gold in the wight belt ultimate, alex got silver in his weight cat, pete won wight belt in his cat, sophie and the 2 younger boys joe and steven did really well even though the boys they were up against looked really experianced they put up a great fight!

I'm looking forward to all the competitions coming up,,, I took this week off from training to celebrate easter with my familly in london but i'm already getting restless and feel like I've probably put on a ton of weight eating all the yummy home cooked meals but hopefully i'll be well rested and ready to start training hard for the next comps. I think I'm going to keep working on takedowns and passing gaurd, and maybe start doing some strength training again as since I started BJJ i have shunned the gym compleatly. I have loads of pics from the Briston competition that i'll put up and some videos too so when I figure out how to do that properly feel free to copy and use them if you see any you like.

Training in eastbourne - Circuit training

With summer being over, I returned back to the UK for my last year of uni!!! After a month of training BJJ at Reza's in bahrain we returned to our club in eastbourne hoping that they had found a good coach, and amazingly they had. Tolly is a purple belt under Ze Marcello (BTT) I remember our first class getting someone with my favourite move of the time a collar choke from gaurd and him laughing in surprise to see that I wasnt a compleate begginner. Its been a good 7 months since that first class and I'm glad with how far I've come. I train bjj on mondays, and wednesdays for about an hour and a half then on saturdays from 12.30 till 2 at canton then 2.30 till about 4 at sparta. On tuesdays and thursday we train no gi stuff, although at the minute I have been running circuit training to help out tolly as he has an mma fight comming up. When i get back to eastbourne I'll add some video's showing the kind of things we've been doing but this is pretty much a breakdown of how I organise the session.

5 minutes dynamic warm up chest stretches, shoulder stretches while running laps of the dojo, high knees butt kickers side steps ect ( As most people are white belts i keep running to a minimum as people get bored and gassed pretty quickly)

15 minutes of agility/plyometric style drills: This envolves a number of different things usually start by weaving through the heavy bags bear crawl back down the dojo crab walk back up and then sprint back down x 2 then i swap in different exercises till they have compleated this up to 8 times. I like to follow this by doing frog jumps, prayer jumps, seated jumps and tunnels (video coming soon for those of you that are not familiar with these) I tend to do about 2 minutes on each drill or untill 15 minutes are up.
Alternativly I like to get everyone in a line one person sprits the length of the dojo and then bear crawls round the rest of the dojo to the back of the line, I select about 8 other drills so they end up doing 8 sprints, they get 2 minutes break and then repeat the process again, I think this is a good drill as it only lasts around 5 minutes but is a good mix between anaerobic and aerobic work out, I'm hoping to start using some heart rate moniters to give a better indication of training intensity although atm as fitness levels are still low in some of the guys I can get a good indication that they are working at a high intensity just from how out of breath they are)

I found this video on youtube (see link) which shows the animal drills I like to use! explaining them to everyone caused alot of laughing at first followed by a lots of grunts and huffing and puffing when coupled with the sprints

I like to do a good static stretching routine to minimise injury depending on the tempo i want to keep things at or how many people i have stretching gets fitted in at different times but i ideally like to do it now so everyone is rested enough to put max effort into the circuit routine.

I usualy select 2 different types of circuits of drills depending on how many people i have

sprawl drill: In partners shadow boxing or clinching one person is in comand and tells the other when to sprawl they have to compleate 3 sets of 20 sprawls each. Alternativly i mix in different exercises like burpies or extra high star jumps or tuck jumps just to change things up. Once people become familiar with the exercises I tend to use I would liek to do the same kind of thing whereby people are in partners shadow boxing but the person in comand selects their own exercise and the person has to do 10 reps of this exercise, with 5 exercises and then they swap, but i'll let you know how succesful this is when i gaive it a try.

10, 9, 8 circuit: This envolves selecting 4 exercises (choose more to make the circuit harder but for the level of fitness of people I am working with this works well) one person counts out 10 reps of each four exercise and everyone does 10 then 9 then 8 all the way down to one. which equals 220 reps all together. i try to choose 3 exercises that work lower body then one that works upper as the last exercise.

There are sooo many more but I think you will see better from videos than me explaining, at the minute most of the exercises are body weight ones, I'm hoping to get some medicene balls and a whole load of strenght and conditioning stuff to make sessions more interesting but I think that body weight exercisies are a great way of building up fitness and everyone seems to be enjoying them atm. Over summer I would like to look more into getting my S&C coaching qualifications as on my cource we only had one module in second year, but i think I have a pretty good understanding and getting the qualification would be useful. Still deciding wheather to do a masters in nutrition or not,,, studying is just sooo expensive but I think it would be worth it.

Wednesday, 8 April 2009

Reza's martial arts

Here is a video that shows the type of training at Reza's martial arts academy in Bahrain

The second chapter-Bahrain

Well after learning the basics of no gi in Thailand I was looking forward to heading back to Bahrain. For those of you that are unfamiliar with the place its a small island in the middle east near saudi arabi, my parents moved there when I was 15 and when I'm not studying at university thats where I like to chill. The next step I took to learning bjj involved getting a gi, after spending all my money in thailand I had just about enough left to pay for a month of training at Reza's martial arts center, this resulted in the purchase of the most pathetic excuse for a gi ever! (see pic) Despite it's cheapness it served its purpose and I soon learned of some of the moves that were possible when wearing a gi, my favourite being gi collar chokes from gaurd. Training at Reza's is pretty amazing his classes involved long warm ups, loads of drills, kul techniques and a good half an hour of rolling! I have a distinct memory of nearly throwing up my first class, and don't get me started on the near enough 6k runs before no gi class at the beginning of competition season. Once again a month passed quickly and it was time to make a move back to university to start my final year of study, begin training with a new group of people and hopfully start to develop my understanding of bjj.

The beginning...

Greetings,, I have no idea how long (or if ever) before my rambellings will gain an audience so I'll start by introducing myself, only seems polite. My name is Rachael I'm 21 years old and in my last year of studying sports and exercise science at the University of Brighton in the Uk. My discovery of BJJ began when I took a trip to thailand with my boyfriend alex, we had been training thai boxing for a couple of months and thought we would spend our summer productivley kicking ass at TMT (tiger muay thai) in Phukett. While I loved the extreme disapline and routine of thai boxing Alex persuaded me to come try a mma class, I had been wanting to try some grappling for a while but had always been a bit warey of it as the classes back home were all guys, as I was fairly new to martial arts I guess this put me off a bit, however seeing as we had come all the way to thailand I thought what the hell might as well give it a go. The next month involved quickly mastering the basic positions and learning a few good moves and mainly getting the crap kicked out of me on a regular basis. But,, pain and bruises aside I was hooked! Thanks to all the guys at TMT who made my first taste of BJJ a good one.