I don’t think there’s anything more rewarding in BJJ than practicing something and being able to successfully use it soon afterward in live rolling, and I don’t often have that experience, but I did this week. The focus in the advanced gi classes was escaping triangles, and on Monday I used the first technique that Professor Greg showed us to escape a triangle by Havoc during king of the mat, which may be the first time I’ve ever gotten out of one of his chokes! The last technique Greg taught us is what he called a “hail mary” (which is low percentage and to be used only when you have no other options left), but I was actually able to use it to escape a triangle last night, and it doesn’t even lessen my satisfaction that the person I used it on was The Hulk, who is notoriously bad at triangles, because if I hadn’t succeeded with that hail mary, I think he would have triangled me. Another thing I count as a success is that although I wasn’t exactly able to escape Tumbleweed’s triangle, I did cause him to switch to an armbar instead, and he gave me props for it. His triangles are usually of the Bermuda variety, because once you go in, there’s no getting out!
So go ahead and try and triangle me now, I dare you, you can’t do it, I have become untrianglable (just kidding, that’s not even a real word). Of course the best triangle defense is to not get caught in one in the first place, and I wish I could say that I only let those guys get me in triangles so I could practice my escapes, but sadly, that’s not the case (nor did I get anyone in any triangles of my own). I don’t know how many times I’ve been triangle choked since I started training, but I think it’s somewhere around “2 many”, so if these techniques help me to cut those numbers even a little, it will be a vast improvement, and not tapping to any triangles this week was a good start!