Firstly, June’s been pretty uneventful since my return from Vegas. Upon my departure, Gabriel Kitober undoubtedly gave me worst black belt beatdowns that I’ve ever had in my life—and I’ve rolled with a fair number of black belts. I mean, he really put it on me the last class I attended at Throw-Down MMA, and he laughed and provided color commentary in his broken, Brazilian English for the entire roll. My ribs and sternum were actually pretty sore for almost a week. I guess he lives by that adage that sometimes you gotta hurt the ones you love! Seriously, my time spent with him was great and his tweaks to my game have been paying dividends since I returned to Cleveland.
I’ve gotten a bit more aggressive with my open guard while recognizing the necessity for me to stay connected and stick to my gameplan when opening the guard.
This week we’re going over a series from side control that was the first series that I ever witnessed Ricardo teaching. Last Fall, when I wisely made the decision to visit RPBjJ he showed a series of side control positions based off of a position called the “100 kilos”. It’s a position perfected by his instructor, Aswaldo Alves, one of the pioneers of BJJ who is still based in Rio.
Some might say that this position is a “big man’s game”, but it’s really not—I’ve been around when 170 lb guys have tapped bigger guys just from the pressure of this position.
The “100 kilos” is established after passing the guard and moving to side control. It involves trapping both arms while placing the bone of your hip just beyond the guy’s sternum. You then keep your body straight and slide across the guy’s body whereby your bottom rib is driving into his diaphragm. If you do it properly, the guy is completely helpless, you are controlling him without even using your hands, and he can’t even speak. You can then use your hands to work a series of submissions.
This position is very “feel” oriented, which works great for me. This morning while training, it was if a light went off in my big head and I really began to feel the mechanics of this move. I feel like I got just a glimpse of what Rickson Gracie refers to as the “invisible Jiu Jitsu”. I need lots of work with this position, but I really dominated a couple of big guys with this position for I purposely worked it while rolling today. I’m so amped up about my progress with this position, for I like lots of arm-bars and shoulder locks from side control, and this “100 kilos” position plays right into guys putting themselves in immediate danger of being submitted.
I really wish I could explain how awful the position feels. Ricardo uses me as a dummy for much of the class—partly because I’m blind, but he also knows that I can take the pain. And when he lays that position on me it feels like I’ve been hit by an 18-wheeler that decides to stop right on top of me! It’s so nasty, man!!!!
Anyway, more work on this for the rest of the week, and then there’s the 4th of July weekend. I typically work a trade show for a couple of clients of mine over this holiday weekend, but not this year! So there’ll be much fun for the train this weekend, and then I really kick things into gear for July. I’m pondering doing a couple of fairly big tournaments this Fall—one of which is the “NO-Gi Pan-Ams” but much depends on my travel schedule and work load. But if I can swing it, I’d like to medal in one of these international events before I get too much older and beaten up to do so! Anyway, in the event that I don’t make another post this week, have an awesome, yet safe 4th of July, and amongst all the partying, remember what a wonderful country those of us in the US are fortunate enough to call our home and for all of those who have laid down their lives to make it happen for us!!!
With Much Respect
Larry, the LTrain