Yeah...just finished my 4th shower today. Morning private and evening class. I'm sure my bathroom is tired of seeing me.
I've been thinking about private lessons since day 1. I initially considered starting with privates instead of group classes, but I had so many general physical barriers to overcome, it would have been a waste of my money. Well, it's been about a year, and I had a day off so I decided to give it a shot.
It was friggin' AWESOME!!
My lesson was with the same brown belt who did my very first intro lesson. Seeing people every day you kinda forget about the stuff they've done, and honestly, when I first started, I didn't get that taking third in Mundials and his list of NAGA champion titles was pretty impressive. More importantly though, he's a great teacher. I've seen him adjust very quickly to different learning styles and perspectives on jiu jitsu. At the advice of Slidey and a few others, I went in with a game plan and took notes...which my instructor was surprisingly excited about.I got an energetic "Cole Miller does the same thing!" He told at least three people in class tonight. The lesson started with stretching and he told me about a seminar he'd gone to yesterday. I finally admitted to someone NOT reading this blog how scared I was when I first started and he seemed genuinely surprised...which surprised me, since I thought it was mad obvious. He then started telling me about the first gym and how man-tastic the training was. Glad I came around when I did, because I honestly don't think I would have made it. I think a lot of cultural shifts have gone on at the school in the last few years. Funny how things change.
My toes! We did a lot of focus on techniques that involved "live feet", keeping weight low and maintaining pressure. I heard someone once say that the things you learn in private lessons...some hit immediately, others over time. Pressure is going to be one of those "over time" points for me. I just have a tendency to back off and keep distance with my upper body.
I talk to my cousin (piano pedagogy person) about the instructional methods and environment a LOT, so I tend to have to turn a lot of what I learn into music-speak. Well, I sparred with the teenage blue belt that was also in my first lesson and he gave me some tips on improvisation...hyper extending elbows in positions that don't get taught as formal submissions. It's such a small concept, but makes such a huge difference.