“A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.”- Albert Einstein
The theme in the advanced class at LBJJC for the past couple of weeks has been cross guard, which is a position I’ve had little experience with, but it seems like it could be a good fit for me. The specific techniques we’ve worked on have been omoplata and armbar, and we’ve studied different options, depending on how our partners react. I remember when I first learned the omoplata, and I was like “What the what?”, so it feels good to be practicing it now, and understand all of the details!
On Wednesday we rolled for forty-five minutes, and I partnered with six of my bros, all of whom opened varying sized cans of whoop-ass on me. Half of the cans didn’t include me being submitted, but the others had extra subs to make up for it! When I rolled with Professor Greg, he tapped me with the armbar from cross guard that we practiced last week, and when I told him I recognized it right away, he asked if I knew what I’d done wrong to end up there, and I gave the correct answer! I brought my arm inside to block his leg, which set me up for the fall.
The sad thing is that during my very next roll with Mike, he submitted me with the same armbar, because I made the exact same mistake! When I lamented to him that it had just happened previously with Greg, he told me that he used to make the same error, because bringing your arm inside the leg seems like the right way to react in that situation, which made me feel a little bit better about doing it twice in a row.
Why is it that when I’m rolling, I continually do things that I’m fully aware I’m not supposed to? It’s like I know BJJ better than I actually do it! One time after rolling with The Professor, he pointed out a mistake I’d made, so I told him “I know better!”, and he said “I know you do.”, with a tone that implied it was the very reason he was surprised that I had done it. When I keep making the same mistakes over and over again, sometimes it feels like I’ll never learn, and I’m just wasting everyone’s time, but there are definitely things I used to do incorrectly that I don’t do anymore, so I guess I am learning from my mistakes…eventually!
“And when the day is done, and I look back, and the fact is I had fun, fumbling around.” -Fiona Apple