My final round in the advanced class last night was with The Professor, and it’s been a few months since we last rolled, but our rolls usually end the same way, with me tapping to a bow and arrow choke (at least once). At one point last night, Greg had me face down with my belly to the mat, and afterward he told me he thought I didn’t freak out about it enough as it was happening, and I agree (because that’s basically the worst position you can be in), but I’m not sure if it was just because I was tired (which is no excuse), or if I simply surrendered to what I saw as inevitable (which means I gave up), or a combination of both.
My rolls with Professor Greg typically follow the basic positional hierarchy of BJJ, meaning that they start with me trying to pass his guard, then he sweeps me, goes to side control, then to mount, then he takes my back and chokes me. I attempt to stall his progress at every stage, and sometimes I have moderate success, but I only remember one time when he didn’t fully complete the cycle. Sometimes he even skips right from the first step to the last (but I’m getting better at defending the arm drag!).
He accomplishes all of this, every time, without using any excessive strength, weight, or meanness. He’s not even a very big guy, he’s just light years ahead of me in technique and experience, and I think he uses all of the Jedi mind tricks (not just the technique of the same name, which we practiced last night) in order to get me to do what he wants me to, but if I end up doing something different than he expects, then he just capitalizes on that instead. It’s all about the path of least resistance, and every time I roll with Greg, he shows me how far away I still am from the full potential of BJJ, but also how lucky I am to have him as my instructor.
In the future, I can never again allow myself to feel as though resistance is futile against The Professor, because even if I’m pretty sure how it will eventually end, that’s not a reason to stop trying, since try is all he’s ever really asked me to do. I may not be able to stop The Force, but I can at least give it a good fight.