Latest News 08/07/14
Surrey Open was nothing short of a success. I only heard good things from everyone, even our rival gyms! In all seriousness, the day was an absolute beauty and it goes to show what can be achieved with a little hard work and dedication.
Andy has put a ridiculous amount of time and effort in to making it a success and it really was!
Another major game player in the success story was Alex DeSouza and his wife Katie. They kindly brought “Who’s afraid of mat 5?!” up from Bournemouth and reffed ALL day! Who’s afraid of mat 5?! is a fantastic concept, thought up by Alex himself. The match is run according to IBJJF blue belt rules, but the two competitors can be any age, gender, weight or belt – so there were some really interesting match ups!
I managed to get on to Mat 5 once at Bournemouth, and once at Surrey. (I did call a few people out but I got mostly all refusals, the best reason being “I don’t want you to embarrass me in front of my girlfriend”). The person making the most of the Mat 5 experience was Bethany from ARBJJ. I teach her Muay Thai, and she’s one of my best students simply because she listens to everything, and practices it until she gets it right so her rate of improvement goes through the roof!
Bethany called me out to Mat 5, and I will never turn down a call out, so off we went. She nicely controlled the beginning of the match by pulling guard, but I managed to pass and after a bit of a scramble I finished with an arm bar. I can’t tell you how much Bethany has improved though, it’s inspiring to watch.
By the end of the day, I came away with a silver in my weight category (should have been gold, another stupid mistake but I won’t dwell on it this time) and a silver in the absolute (the gold/silver match was my 6th of the day and my muscles were completely burnt out. Need to improve on this but I deserved the silver, not the gold this time)
So what did I learn from the Surrey Open?
– My team mates are awesome.- Being part of the ARBJJ team is the best thing ever.
– I need to work on my grip strength.
– I need to work on my take downs, sweeps and submissions from guard.
Not too much then!
My cardio wasn’t too bad, my breathing has definitely improved since I took up swimming. My grips/forearms were the weakest part and burnt out fairly soon. The perils of too much grappling!
This will all be improved on, and Brighton (20th July) WILL be better. We already have a team together to take down, so there is no stopping us!