Sunday, January 6, 2013

Krav Maga Rocks And Triangle Chokes Hurt!

I recently got a job as a Krav Maga instructor and I absolutely love it.  The martial art is simple and effective, not least because it focuses on attacks to the groin.  The inside joke among Kravists is "no groin, no Krav Maga."  Today, we had more belt tests and everybody did pretty well.  However, the true standout was a girl in her midteens who earned her brown belt.  She's a kind and soft-spoken young lady who may weigh 110 lbs. soaking wet.  However, when she fights, she turns into a freaking valkyrie!  If I didn't have protective gear, I wouldn't have my nuts or my eyeballs.  You know a martial art is effective if it can teach a young girl to hold her own against a 27-year-old karate black belt.  

My fellow instructor, Mr. Brian, had his purple belt test today.  He's in excellent shape, not even considering that he is in his fifties.  He's a highly intelligent fighter, always making sure that his technique is spot on and constantly looking at how he can improve his moves.  He was like a machine today, manhandling me and another instructor, Mr. Alan, nearly every time that we tried to attack him.  Later during the test, he was joined by Clay, who is a tall, athletic man in his thirties. 

I'm not a particularly strong guy, but with seven years of martial arts training and four years of high school wrestling team under my belt, I thought that I should do my best to give Clay a challenge.  I even lifted him up when I was in his guard, just to test how he would react.  He kept his cool and didn't release his guard, choosing to go for a triangle choke as soon as I put him back on the ground.  When he adjusted his position to get his legs around my neck and arm, I felt like I was trapped in an iron vice!  I tapped immediately because I knew that, if I didn't, Clay would make me "go to sleep."

In spite of that, I gained a love for grappling today!  Even though I wrestled in high school and made the varsity team, I was never particularly good.  I only had four wins in my best year.  This has been a sore spot for me and I have wanted to master a grappling art for a while in order to redeem myself.  The way that I handled myself while testing Mr. Brian and Clay made me feel that, if I really worked hard at it, I would do pretty well.  So I'm going to save up some money in order to cross-train in a grappling art.  I want to try out Pankration first, but no one who has seen a UFC Pay-Per-View can doubt the effectiveness of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.  As long as I don't encounter an assailant with the surname "Sakuraba", it should keep me out of trouble on the ground, haha!

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