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28. BJJ, Burmuda shorts and puffy shirts December 17, 2008

Posted by Adam Adshead in BJJ, Conceptual BJJ.
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fas016It’s coming to the end of 2008 and now is a perfect time to reflect on your game over the past year. This can come in many areas, but today I want to talk about the different factions of BJJ that you use whilst rolling.

To gauge such a thing I think it’s worth pondering the question – When you roll what percentage of ‘The game’ do you use?

By that I mean what proportion of the encyclopedia of BJJ do you try and execute during a standard roll? Do you play mainly guard, go for triangles and omo platas and repeat the process? Do you shoot straight to top control and work predominately from there, or do you alternate between playing top game, sometimes play guard, mix it up with some back control, plenty of sweeps, mount and a full range of submissions, transitions and strategies?

The reason your game might be closer to one than the other could be your experience, but if you’re not new to BJJ and you’re still playing a lop sided game, you could be seriously restricting your long term development.

What I’m not talking about is when you’re trying to boost the amount of repetitions of something by excluding everything else you work. What I’m talking about is rolling the same way, with the same people, every single session.

In short this way of playing is all about short term gains compared with long term development.

It could be something you’re not aware off, so now is the time to readdress the balance. It should go without saying that you need to alter the way you roll with white belts who are lighter than you compared to heavier black belts, but I think the same can be said when rolling with people of a similar weight and experience.

To tempt people not to fall into such a habit/break them out it, we’ve started rolls from different positions, but you are ultimately the one who needs to take control of the choices you make whilst rolling.

I like to equate this idea to different outfits for different situations. If playing your guard game is Burmuda shorts and a Hawaiian shirt, then working your knee-pin might be a nice puffy shirt and plaid trousers and so on, with each outfit being suitable for different occasions. While you can wear the same clothes for work and for the beach, you shouldn’t really wear one outfit or another every single day.

Expand your grappling wardrobe and soon you’ll see not only the connections you’re missing but donning a cravat with a bowler hat is a great way to escape side control then take the back.

Adam Adshead

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