Saturday, October 15, 2011

The guy who I have no hope of beating

OK yeah...I'm not even a blue belt and there are a lot of them...people that are more technical, faster, more strategic, heavier, stronger, you name it. This guy though, he's heavier, stronger and more technical than I am, all at the same time. There's NOTHING I've learned to use that works against him. Techniques where I use weight are completely useless. Same deal with strength. If I know a technique, he knows a better one and knows the counter to it. I have a LITTLE bit of flexibility on him, but all it does is slow him down a pinch.

I used to feel so desperate sparring with him. He's not a squasher, but even his weight on the bottom is daunting.  Just trying to throw his legs aside to pass his spider guard made my arms feel spindly and weak.  Now, I've learned to appreciate it because I can see what are emerging as my "strengths", which have turned to "go to" moves, which will eventually become "crutches". Last night, I saw another light.

In all the impassable walls he throws up, I've found little bricks of encouragement. With some time, technique (and probably some QT with the resistance bands), I think I may one day be able to move him, at least enough to do what I need. He's inspired me to learn how to be a little guy...I knew it was coming, but I've spent the last two years getting comfortable using my weight. Now, it's time to try something new. 


Jodie said...

I train with a guy like that. He had to learn to be technical early because he got beat so badly by the little guys. He taunts me as he rolls with me, but in an encouraging way. I always like rolling with him because he pushes me and at the same time he works with me. :)

Megan said...

Funny the people we end up learning from.

Gus said...

I know how you feel. A year ago I was a 4 stripe white belt, when a 300+ lb. purple belt showed up at the school. At 195 lbs, I had consistently been one of the larger guys at the evening classes. Occasionally we would get someone my size or bigger, but I always seemed to have better technique or was quicker, I at least felt like I had something to counter them. The Purple Monster was different...I had nothing for him, he crushed everything I tried. On the rare occasions when I would get mount, my knees wouldn't touch the mat. I got paired with him nearly every randori for 2-3 months. Our Prof. would point at us and say, " the two big guys down here", as if we were even close to being in the same weight class. It was really humbling, I took a beating and would often feel frustrated leaving class. Eventually, though I noticed I could perceive even a tiny shift in his weight when I was on bottom of side control or a tiny gap in his guard. It's not like I could do much with it, but I would find myself getting a knee in from side control or a butterfly hook in. It usually wouldn't last long he would pass, get my back or submit me. I began to redefine my victories with him. He left our academy after 3-4 months and I got my blue belt 2-3 months after he left. I think he helped me grow and keep me humble more than any one individual on my bjj path. I'm grateful now for the time he trained with us.

BTW-I would sometimes really spaz with him trying to overpower him, he would usually promptly squash or submit me and then say to me "CALM DOWN"! It used to cut me to the bone. I AM the calm one in class, but I would spaz with him out of desperation.

Megan said...

That's totally my story Gus. There's always someone bigger/stronger/faster/better. Thanks for the post:)