Takedown breakdown

I haven’t been feeling well for the past few days, but yesterday I went to Ethridge Jiu-Jitsu class anyway, and of course it had to be Throwing Sunday! Thankfully, Amy didn’t have Joe and I throw each other a hundred times (like usual!), instead we worked on defending throws, and then counter-throwing.

I hated doing takedowns long before I broke my wrist while practicing throws a few years ago, but now at times it’s like I have a mental block. Yesterday when I was supposed to keep my arms wrapped around Joe during a sacrifice throw, I kept pulling one of my arms out at the last second, which I guess was because I was afraid of Joe falling on it, but I was only making it more dangerous. When Joe and Amy tried to slow things down and get me to not pull my arm out, I literally froze, and I couldn’t do the throw at all! Finally, I got up the nerve to do it correctly, and even though Joe did land on my arm, it didn’t hurt me a bit.

The weird thing is that it’s only during drilling that this issue comes up, and when I’m actually doing takedown sparring, I’m not scared, and I never freeze. I’m not afraid of falling during randori, and I can even throw people who are fully resisting, as long as I don’t think about it too much.

You can throw a fottball or baseball, but try throwing something that's trying to throw you.Unfortunately, my husband is not one of the people I can successfully throw (at least not yet!), which is why when we have our final match from standing at the end of every Ethridge class, I usually try to jump guard on him, but since he and Amy both train Judo, they complain when I don’t at least attempt a takedown (especially on Throwing Sunday!), so yesterday I gave it my best shot, but I still ended up getting thrown. I also got submitted, but I think it took Joe at least ten minutes, which is about twice as long as normal! The “final death match” in Ethridge class doesn’t have a time limit, it keeps going until someone (usually me) dies, so it’s a good thing I’m like a super cat, and I have 99 lives! If only I always landed on my feet…

I keep doing Throwing Sunday not because I want to be awesome at throwing (although I wouldn’t mind!), but in hopes that practicing takedowns won’t stress me out anymore. Overcoming fear is one of the reasons I started training Jiu-Jitsu in the first place, because as a Karate black belt, being on the ground terrified me, and I wanted to face it. To my surprise, I ended up falling in love with grappling, and I don’t see that ever happening with throwing, but I’m not giving up!

I’m not scared to jump, I’m not scared to fall.
If there was nowhere to land, I wouldn’t be scared at all.”
-Florence and The Machine


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