"In addition to having spoken sufficiently it is the highest sort of victory to teach your opponent something that will be to his benefit. This is in accordance with the Way." From The Hagakure: The Way of the Samurai
This has actually become a sort of day-after game for me, counting the places where I hurt. Today, it's both shins (from Muay Thai on Thursday), the arch of my left foot, heavy bruises on the insides of both forearms, and screaming joints in my right arm (more about that in a minute). Also, I forgot to take off my wedding ring before class last night, and it ended up tearing the skin between my fingers. Here's a lousy picture of it. (It's the spot with the skin flap hanging off, which really doesn't make it look as painful as it is.)
emulate Ali, so that my blog can get as many followers as hers has.
Tony was absent last night, treating a minor injury, so we had a guest instructor, Nate, one of Tony's assistants. Nate seems like a very good guy, and is very gung ho. He decided to focus the class period on working your opponent into a submission from the side control position. Side control is pretty close to what you would think of as a classic wrestling pin, where your opponent is on their back, and you are laying across their chest with your arms locking down their head and arms. To keep it short, we basically spent the next 45 minutes learning and performing various ways to move from that position into the arm bar.
The arm bar. The reason why my right arm is full of quivering nerves today. There are variations on how it is performed, but it comes down to trapping your opponent's arm between your legs, while your legs are across his chest, then leaning back and bending his arm backwards at the elbow joint. He'll either tap out, or his arm will break.
I trained with Jay last night, who I found out is the one dude in class older than me. We partnered well together, I think. Both of us know that we're going to be breaking out the Icy Hot when we get home, so we only took things as far as they needed to go. What impressed me is that he's been doing this for only about six months, and he had really good technique. I'm learning that this is something that you can become pretty decent at if you stick with it for a while.
We also shared a pretty good silent laugh and a look that said "Fuh-huh-huck that" when Nate was demonstrating a move which included the instruction, "Now just whip your leg over like this, and bend it into this shape..."
We sparred pretty evenly at the end of class, and then Nate had everybody switch partners. I finished class with Kyle, who is only a little shorter than me, and shaped like a big, muscular triangle. I started out OK! Before long, though, I was inescapably pinned, and struggling hard. Then I had an idea.
"*gasp...* What would you do if you were in this situation?"
He stopped, thought for a second, and then thoughtfully explained and showed me different alternatives that I could use. And then I kicked him in the nuts and put him in an arm bar.