Tonight was a good pace for me. It was a good workout, but not ridiculously strenuous. I feel like my overall jiu jitsu strategy is starting to take shape. Basically, from the top, it’s tight passing from the knees. If I’m on my feet in a real fight, I would be most likely trying to disengage anyway, whereas on the ground, gaining positional advantage may be the only option, especially if the person has a hold of you and won’t let you stand up. From the bottom, my goal is to get the person into my closed guard and work from there. If they manage to break my closed guard, the idea would be for me to use the other open guards as a means to get back to closed guard (or sweep them, if a clear opportunity presents itself). The logic behind picking both these approaches is that they are very applicable to a real fight, while at the same time, requiring much less strength, speed and athleticism than some of the other options to do over an extended period of time. My goal for the foreseeable future will be to perfect this strategy, and work on mastering the art of stringing together various attack sequences from these positions. On the defense side, I think I’m doing fairly well in this area, if for no other reason than this is what I have spent a majority of my time doing when sparring. It goes like this: 1. I try an attack against a blue belt. 2. It doesn’t work, and he passes my guard, mounts, takes my back etc. 3. I defend as long as I can, occasionally escaping, occasionally tapping. There are really only a few submissions anymore that consistently give me trouble: the triangle, and the bow and arrow. Sometimes, I tap to the occasional arm bar, collar choke, or kimura, but not that often. I think it possibly isn’t even a matter of not knowing what to do, as much as it is a lapse in concentration, since the defenses aren’t quite yet second nature. In sum, some days I think it’s hopeless, and other days I feel like I can begin to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Tonight was more of the latter.

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