Holy fucking shitballs would it be great to be young again. Now I know in saying that, you’re probably going to think me a bit of a cunt. You see, I’m twenty-six so I’m not exactly old, however I do have a point here, so put the fucking knife down.
Training has been going well of late. I’m not getting caught very often, and I’m feeling pretty damned good when rolling. I’m still taking it easy when rolling, never beasting, making things a game and focusing on what I want to focus on at any particular time. I don’t know if I’m getting any better, but I feel better, and that’s what matters.
Now, to be young. On a Wednesday night, we have a mixed class. It’s adults and kids. Now the kids are quite small, and I’m shit at guessing ages so let’s just say they’re all 11 years old. I know that’s not the case at all, because some are definitely older than others. Anyways, there’s four that I can think of who regularly attend class. Becky, Kacy, Cool & Darren. These kids are wonderful. They’ve all become disciplined, and each have their own styles on the mats. Where things get really brilliant though is the fact that they’re like sponges. ELEVEN YEAR OLD SPONGES (again, age not correct). I would love to be that age again.
Tonight’s class focused on an armbar from side control, and a bow & arrow variation from dorsal. The kids picked these techniques up so brilliantly and I don’t think they realise the relevance of what they’re doing right now. They’re little impressionable white belts on a possible journey like the rest of us to black belt. However they could easily have their back belts by twenty, or maybe sooner depending how much effort they put in. That’s wild to me, but I want to make sure these little buggers actually get there.
The trick is giving enough to make the sport appealing to them when you’re rolling. There’s no point in me grabbing a kid and kimuraing them 5,000 times in one class. Instead I’ll roll from bad positions, stop and encourage them to work.
Darren is absolutely tiny compared to me, but he sunk a rear naked choke that almost took my last breath. I paused for a moment to think about what he was doing right and wrong, and before I knew it I had to tap. THAT’S FUCKING BRILLIANT.
Cool used to be quite a handful to train, because it seemed like he was for want of a better word, acting the cunt. I probably shouldn’t say that about a kid, but there you go, that’s how it is. It didn’t take long though for him to start appreciating the sport and how rewarding it felt when you actually caught someone, or defended something. He’s more balanced now, and is actually a really good training partner for anyone there.
Kacy is about as aggressive as a kid can get when rolling, I’ve seen her in a Wolverine like frenzy, trying to rip people apart. I think she’s closer to 8 than eleven, and she’s terrifying.
Becky keeps getting told to be more aggressive, but the fact is her technique is really bloody good. She learns very quickly too. And with the right direction, she’s going to be a killer.
They all are, and that’s my point I guess. It would have been great for me to have gotten involved in this sport when I was that young. However I’m on a different path, one that will currently shape the future whilst on my own journey. Wonderful.