During the advanced class at Lincoln BJJ on Monday, Professor Greg said he’d been reading about how to help students learn, and one of the things he read was that it is beneficial to have some randomness in training. That made a lot of sense to me, because when we’re doing the same things time after time, we can start to just go through the motions, so we might not be as present as we could be. If practice becomes too routine, it’s possible for our minds to tune out, and although I make a conscious effort to avoid that, at times I have found my own thoughts drifting away during drilling.
After reading that piece of advice, The Professor decided to add a new form of drilling to the advanced classes this week, which definitely kept us fully engaged. He had us start in closed guard, then when he said “go”, the top person would do a standing guard break, and after everyone had done so, Greg would say “smash” (smash pass), “slide” (knee slide pass), or “foot” (straight ankle lock), and we would do the corresponding technique, then return to closed guard, and repeat. Each partner drilled for five to six minutes straight (instead of alternating each time), so it was a bit of a workout for the body as well as the mind.
Even though there were only three techniques to chose from, on Monday it would take my brain a second to process which one I was supposed to do, but by Wednesday, my reaction time was much quicker, and I feel like my execution of the specific techniques has improved. Our partners gave us no resistance, but drilling in this manner made it feel more like live sparring, and it added a fun element to practice, which I enjoyed!
I already think Professor Greg is a fantastic instructor, and I appreciate that he’s trying to become even better. In reference to the discussion on reddit yesterday, where people replaced the words “I, me, etc.” with “Greg”, I’ll end this post with the altered lyrics to the song named in the title, in honor of The Professor. ;)
“If you’re lost you can look, and you will find Greg, time after time.
If you fall Greg will catch you, Greg will be waiting, time after time.” -Cyndi Lauper