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From the Sidelines – Teppo Ebi, March 9th

March 10, 2009

Boy, that sucked. Talk about the fastest “THIS IS SPARTA!!!” moment to “Get out of the water! There’s a shark in the water!!” moment in my life.

Apparently my knee and leg aren’t as ready as I thought they’d be.

My bottom game? Yes sir, right as rain but slow as an old pooch with a belly full of gator beef. Top position? Huh, what was that?

My top game is worse than me trying to walk. Awkward, uncomfortable, absurdly stiff and painful. Sure I can still slap on submissions from the guard. I can even sweep with the best of ’em, but after that I’m like a deer in headlights. I freeze up. Or I take way too long to get in position. But for the most part I can’t kneel or stay on my knees very long.

I tried to do the 8 point drill (where we go from mount to side control and back to mount using 8 different holds along the way – thus 8 points), and my side control is laughable. My white-belt-self could hold better side control. Oh well.

So I reverted to coach mode and started barking orders at everyone who could understand me. Except Shimosako-san. He’s the purple belt, can’t bark orders at him or he’d flying triangle me from across the room.


Brent has a mean top game, but the only thing that’s lacking in his game is his guard. So I had him, Seth, Carl and Oguni do sweep and submission drills from the guard. I wanted Brent to do call-out and scenario drills but I got side tracked and Brent headed into the open mat to spar.

What got me side tracked was working with Seth. After showing him the 8 point drill I could see the gears slowly turn. So I gave him a few more side-control drills to work on with Carl, gave him the option of going to knee-on-the-belly (Seth likes to pass standing up) and afterwards I could see the little jiu-jitsu light bulb in Seth’s brain light up. I stopped there, not wanting to overload him with techniques and had him process it physically by having him and Oguni work the guard pass/mount bump drill.

Oguni beats himself up. He says self deprecating comments that I quickly squash and offer words of encouragement. For instance, he’d be disappointed in himself for not sparring yesterday and then immediately call himself a wimp. I’d reply that he’s the farthest thing away from a wimp (wimpy guys call it quits when it gets difficult) and the drilling he’s been doing will help him in the long run, more so than sparring.

Kimura-san is entering the tournament this month, his first. I’m proud of him and I know he’s going to do well. Because of his flexibility Kimura-san will pose a lot of problems to everyone he has a match against. I am worried about his conditioning though. So I sent Brent and Seth after him in back-to-back rounds. For Kimura-san, being that it was at the end of the session, that was a lot. They went in against Kimura-san with the mission of going as hard as they could (for their size, they are out of Kimura-san’s weight class) but not too hard. Pushed to his limits, yes. Injured, no.

Next week, I hope to go over passing the spider guard with Carl and Brent. They’re at the point where they’re not going anywhere fast when it comes to the open guard.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. Ken permalink
    March 10, 2009 11:03 pm


    Would you explain to me in more detail your 8-point drill? Apparently I’m the only one in the universe that is not familar with it!


  2. March 11, 2009 2:26 pm

    Hey Ken,

    Will do. I’ll put ’em up in a separate post and try my best to describe it, and post up pictures of the drill later on.

  3. Ken permalink
    March 11, 2009 6:51 pm


  4. March 16, 2009 12:26 am

    Ahh, the joys of coming back to training from a lay-off..

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