Meet Rachel. She's the woman in the photo on the right grappling with Zack.
Zack was on the bottom when I snapped this photo. Rachel is on top with her arm around Zack's neck.
You can't tell from this photo but Zack is about 6'2" and all muscle. Rachel is about 5'10" and all muscle.
Zack must outweigh Rachel by about 40 lbs.
Rachel has been training with the guys to prepare herself for some very skilled, high-ranking women at the upcoming ADCC (Abu Dhabi)Submission Grapping Competition on Saturday, August 15th in South Orange, N.J.
She's also one of the instructors in my BJJ class. And I feel very lucky that we have her.
She's always walking around during the technique section of class helping 'newbies', like myself and constantly voicing encouragement to just about everyone she comes in contact with...Rachel is one tough woman.
Last night was a ton of fun at BJJ class. After the conditioning round (25 minutes last night), we practiced several new (for me) techniques that I found awesome. The first was "pulling guard" from standing up: with a solid grip on your opponent's collar and sleeve, you jump up, wrap your legs around them and drag them down to the mat, in your closed guard. I was working with someone I knew from the MT classes named "Mick"...blue belt and a really nice guy.
After that we went over several different collar chokes while someone is in your guard and then..."ta dah"..I learned how to do my first armbar from the closed guard position! It was terrific! Mick was walking me through it, over and over and by the end of the class I was actually able to pull it off. Very cool stuff.
It made me even more dedicated to get proficient at BJJ, at least to the point where I can roll with the others and give them a run for their money. (Well, at least survive for awhile...) Starting to believe I'll be able to do exactly that, eventually. (a year? two? three?...doesn't matter...I'm in this for the long haul.) Hey, maybe I'll make myself some major league luck and be the oldest guy they've ever had test for blue belt...wouldn't that be something?
I'm going on vacation for the next two weeks...going completely "off the grid", no laptop, no email, no Internet, no voice mail, no Pony Express, no smoke signals (sorry MikeZ).
Time to recharge the brain batteries and get tight with the beach, the ocean and my family.
I highly recommend it to everyone. It's what it's all about.
Stay tuned for more to come. ( in 2 weeks)