We had our first Informal FlowFighting® group session this past Saturday. Brian Bentz and Joel Seymour were kind enough to show up.
The weather was pleasant, cloudy, but balmy and no rain. I’m not counting on that for very long.
We started with some exercises from Intu-Flow to get loose, we progressed to some exercises from FlowFit® and Forward Pressure to raise core temperature. Then we did some vibration drills and waves (body, arms, etc) to disperse residual tension.
We started with some low key, slow speed, noncompetitive drills
First was a simple hook and push flow drill.
Next we moved on to a joint articulation study. Joel and Brian hadn’t done this one before so it was pretty interesting. Coming from a competitive grappling background (some wrestling and judo) Brian caught on pretty quickly. Ironically (but not really), coming from a background of training in LEO type restraining techniques, Joel took a little time. It was pretty funny because I was at the same place when I started working with Coach Dan a little over a year ago. I came from a TMA and military background and learned restraining and small joint manipulation techniques that were practiced over and over in the hopes that they would be ingrained into the nervous system for access when we needed them. The techniques worked, during practice, or against someone that had had similar training. The problem comes along when you encounter someone who doesn’t know that these techniques work.
We worked on suspending the belief that the armbar or wrist lock worked. We would go slowly and stopped when we felt the tension and allow the person to move away from the force or guide them away from the force with the opposite hand. At one point I told Joel as he looked up from some kind of wristlock/armbar “I don’t have you, you just think I do”. At that point he found a way to spiral away from the force and break my grasp.
Next was a little shock absorption we worked first on absorbing pushes to the torso, hips and thighs. The receiver controlled the force that was used. The giver worked on solid, controlled pushes through the body. With a solid background in Intu-Flow and at that level of force everyone did pretty damn well.
Finally we finished up with a competitive drill, a variation on push hands.
The rules of engagement:
We start in an approximately 7X7 square. Pushing and hooking are allowed except to the head. No grabbing body parts or clothing. If a person is moved out of the square or to the ground he loses.
We played with this switching in and out. We also did a variation where we could only use our hips to move the other person.
Overall it was a dang fun day. Joel capped it off with a hilarious story about a guy he works with who claimed to be able to deadlift 570lbs. Joel pulled a 5 dollar bill out of his pocket and placed it on the floor. “Deadlift this and you can keep it”. Joel then did an imitation of the guy grunting and groaning, doing what can only be described as an creeky old-guy lunge trying so hard to pick up the money. Joel then slowly reached down and snatched the money from the floor before the guy could get into a solid position. Now that’s functional.
Brian and Joel won’t be able to come up but twice a month but I’m getting together some interested friends and acquaintances. It should be fun. I’d like to get something going 3 times a week but every Saturday should be a good start.