Saturday, 24 August 2013

Grappling Industries: Montreal (NoGI Worlds Edition) August 17th 2013

What the heck blogger? Why didn't you save the 98% finished post I wrote two days ago??? 

I hate re-writing stuff. So now I don't even feel like writing about this event.  But alas, there were some things I liked and did not like and whatnot, like with all tournaments. 

Starting off, we almost didn't go, and our carload ended up being just Alasdair and I.  Jon messed up his shoulder when Rick from AOJ  was here so he stayed home and worked on the renos to our entryway that he started 3 or 4 years ago.   Anyway, we were going to bail and just stay home and rest our weary bones, but I had committed to refereeing and they had some people cancel, so like good little sponsored athletes, we made the trek down.

It was a pretty terrible drive there. Nothing like the great blizzard and car failure of February(I think it was Feb anyway) but 3+ hours to get through Toronto is pretty awful.  Once we were past Pickering it was smooth sailing though.  The drive home was almost perfect. 6 hours door to door, with one quick gas / food / bathroom break at the first service center in Ontario.  We only took one break each way, which really does cut down on the time spent, but also makes for pretty stiff joints and a sore butt.

Our hotel was pretty sweet. I think it was either very new, or recently completely renovated.  It didn't quite have the new smell, but everything from the carpets, to the tables, walls, and TVs seemed new.
It had a pretty good location to,  close to one of the airports(I don't know which one), and also very close to a bunch of shops, a theatre and other entertainment type stuff.  Good for a 2 day event.  Free parking and WiFi is also pretty sweet and helps keep the costs of a trip down, especially for me and Jon, who are on wind, so we don't have data in Montreal.  Lastly, the hotel had a decent breakfast, for a reasonable fee, buffet was 14 bucks, or a standard omelet or eggs with bacon coffee, toast and whatnot was 11.50.   Buffet is great for events with day before weighin, not so great for ibjjf style events.

Anyway, it's a good thing we did show up because one of the other referrers canceled on Friday night, and a table worker or two no-showed!  We started at 9 am pretty much on the button, and ran steady till 530ish, with a bit of a break on some mats between the transition from nogi to gi.  This went more smoothly then at some past events because it seemed like they put divisions that would likely be the same.between gi and nogi on the same mats. 

For example: mat 1 was the light weight classes of nogi advanced, and then the purple belt lighter weight classes.  So there was less trouble with not being able to start a gi division because competitors were still finishing nogi on  another mat.  Of course, this doesn't always work, because if it is one of the really big divisions, having both gi and nogi run on the same mat, would lead to that mat running much later then other mats.  This did happen on the weekend as well, but I think it was only about half hour or so, once I to pass a few matches off onto a done mat. 

So, refereeing was an experience, as always.  I got called "bush-league" which turns out to mean bad.  It's a new term for me, but I suppose it could be worse.  He did say "with all do respect" first.  I'm not sure how that is respectful, but whatever.  He didn't like how I stopped fights before a takedown was complete on it's way out of bounds, and how I didn't stop it when they weren't heading towards the edge and the other guy got a takedown.  Sadly, with the small mat areas, and small(ish, well pretty standard which i find small) safety area, you have to stop things more often then on say, IBJJF size mat areas (which also vary from event to event, fun fact there).  

One other thing, that has kind of got me stewing about refereeing and my brain, was that after one match, the ended up being 3-1 advantages, the coach of the guy who lost was asking me about the advantages.  He was certain it should have been 2-2, and I couldn't recall what the advantages were given for. This was like, right after the match.  I felt bad, because I should be able to remember, it was 30 seconds ago, max 5 minutes total.  I am still confident I scored it right.  I believe the videos are already up so feel free to dig it up and prove me wrong.  But, I couldn't defend the calls I made.  That being said, I probably shouldn't even acknowledge people who want to question my refereeing, but he is a well respected member of the community and I could have been a good opportunity to learn perhaps.  

Anyway, the fact that my brain is working this substandardly makes me question my ability to referee.   I have always, for as long as I can remember had an iffy memory, I can re-watch a movie like 6 months after I watch it, and forget the dialog and whatnot. The general plot I can mostly remember but details are all lost.  Same with reading, I can re-read a book a year apart and it'll be new again.   It has definitely gotten worse since the last 2 concussions (one from sparring back in 2009 or so) ad the most recent one last December.

Another thing that was quite frustrating as a referee was the number of competitors reaping knees and not even knowing they are doing it.  Instructors/Professors/Coaches:  If you are going to teach DLR, and/or ankle locks please make sure your students know where they can and cannot put their feet, and which way they can turn!  Thankfully, with the new rules, I don't have to DQ instantly, but it's bad form.   I had 2 guys in intermediate going after ankle locks, and they were reaping like crazy. I stopped it and said "you can't do that", and they were both like "do what???".  I can only shake my head and hope they remember or next time.  I gave them a penalty, explained, un-reaped the legs and started them up again.   Here's a picture of it, in-case your are wondering if I'm crazy.

Last thing about refereeing that drives me crazy, is when competitors don't know the commands.  Again, coaches, if you are going to allow your students to compete, PLEASE make sure they know the basics like start,stop, and what tapping means.  Seriously.  I had a guys elbow get pretty jacked b/c the competitor didn't stop cranking when the guy tapped, and also didn't stop when I said Pa-row.   To me, that is one of the most disrespectful things you can do in competition (next to walking around with no shoes off the mat).   Even if you just hold, but don't apply anymore pressure until you are sure the referee has seen the tap, that would be ok.  

Alright, I am done ranting about refereeing.  Let's talk about the other thing that I was not a fan of this time around.  The medic situation was not good.  There was a medic, but he didn't have a table or area set up.  He was ill-equiped (no sports tape) and he didn't handle some injuries very well.  He was also not always easily found (since he didn't have a specific area).   I sent a guy to get his foot that was bleeding from mat burn taped up. He came back with a bandaid and a strip of clear tape on it.  The tape wasn't even wrapped around his foot. Needless to say, it lasted about 10 seconds.  A friend of mine who's elbow got jacked when to see him.  The medic asked if it hurt, and he said yes,  so he gave him some ice.  He didn't inspect it or try to diagnose it or anything.  While I don't expect the medics to be orthopedic surgeons,  I do expect them to be aware of the sport, and the special needs that come with working at it.

I didn't get a lot of free time to observe the tournament in general,  weigh ins went smoothly.  They have a really nice, very accurate scale and people were going through the weigh ins quickly.    I am a huge fan of doing weighins in the morning.  Maybe I am partial to it because that is how it is done for most judo tournaments (there are some that do day before, but never matside).  But I like how smooth it makes the rest of the day.   The one thing I am not a huge fan of that Grappling Industries still does, is use the IBJJF GI weight classes, but allow people to weighin without their gi.   The Gi weight classes have a pretty significant weight allowance built into them to accommodate people wearing a gi. So they should be using the NOGI weight classes if they let ppl weigh in without their gi.

I did get a few minutes to sit down and watch my friend Quincy referee.  She is a pretty new referee, but she controlled the action well and I didn't see any glaring issues or problems.  She handled the small space well, and did a good job positioning herself to see the action.  All the other referees were fairly experienced.  I do feel a bit bad for them, compared to the GTA, they don't have nearly as many opportunities to referee and stay sharp.

True North BJJ was there snapping pictures.  I think Scott took probably 700 or so.  He was all over the place and didn't rest all day. I don't know how he did it, especially with his bum knee.   You can check out their photo galleries on facebook by liking their fanpage. Here is a shortcut to one of the three albums.  True North BJJ is a new media/information/whatever outlet for the Jiu Jitsu community In Ontario and Canada.  It focuses more on the information and events and less on the memes and douchbaggary that seem to be becoming more and more popular around the interwebs.

This tournament has out-grown it's current venue.  With 5 mat areas there wasn't a lot of spectator room, and the gym got very very hot and stuffy by mid-afternoon.  This is great for the promoters and for the scene in Montreal in general, but they may have to start looking for a mid-size venue to accommodate the growth.  Being able to it 6 mat areas, with ample safety room and spectator room would make for a shorter day and would be more comfortable for everyone.  I do congratulate Grappling Industries on the growth though, it's great to see more and more competitors coming out to events in Montreal.  It seems like Montreal has a very different scene then Toronto, and I am not sure why.  Montreal is  huge city, and there are other cities in driving distance that also have pretty good BJJ clubs in them (Ottawa for one).  There certainly is a lot more MMA and Judo guys coming out to these events then any events in the GTA.

Alasdair had a pretty decent day, especially if you take into consideration that he doesn't really like nogi,  has a hyper extended elbow, and wasn't feeling well.  None of that stopped him from going 4-0 in the round robin, with 3 slick subs, and one win by points.  Unfortunately it all caught up with him, and he didn't exactly perform to his full potential in the final against fellow Grappling Industries sponsored competitor Maxime Poulin.  To be fair, Maxime is an absolute beast and destroyed pretty much everyone he fought!  You can read up a bit more on Maxime on the Grappling Industries website.

There were a few competitors that I refereed that really stood out in mind mind.

Starting of with Scott Jutras, he placed 2nd in the -195 nogi advanced division.  He's a 10th planet guy and had a bunch of very quick, slick subs.  I was impressed with his composure when he got taken down (straight to a guillotine) and his transitions were very smooth.  

In the big guys category, 2 competitors stood out: Eric Chibuluzo, who is actually only a white belt, and is a super athlete with an insane will to win. He shut down the game of much more experienced competitors.   He is going to be a force to be reckoned with when he has a few years of experience under his belt.  Also standing out was Jeff Muir,  had never seen Jeff compete before, and his style was so relaxed and controlled.  He was also ridiculously friendly, having a chat mid-match on at least one occasion.  He didn't win medal, but he just stood out as a great competitor.

Of course, no grappling industries is complete without the ankle lock king, Jon-Taine Hall.  Everyone knows it's coming, and no-one can stop it.   In one match, he was down on points, and there was less the 30 seconds left and he pulled an ankle lock out of nowhere to get the tap!    Jon-Taine is a super humble competitor as well, and he always(from what I've seen anyway)  gives guys a chance to tap before he really puts the pressure on.

Well, I'm pretty sure this version of the post is entirely different then the original, but that's what you get when my phone craps out on me.   I apologize for taking so long to get it finished, It's pretty un-motivating to have 2 hours of work disappear.  I guess it's not safe to assume the mobile app auto-saves as anally as the web interface.

So, coming up next:

Sept 7th: Grappling Industries: Sunshine Boulevard Toronto. There will be trips to Miami and NOGI worlds to be won.  Also, I think the brand new amazing podium made by Gabrielle will be debuted!

Sept 21st:  The GTA Classic  This OJA event is one of my favourite events of the year. It's like the back to school tournament. It's GI only, and they are working on some pretty cool prizes.  There will be samuri swords for absolute winners which is pretty badass.

Oct 5th:  Grappling Industries:  HWY 401 Edition: Montreal.  They are giving away a 8 trips to Toronto for the next Grappling Industries event in Toronto.  I think this is a pretty cool concept, and I hope it helps kind of bridge the gap between the two scenes.  It's also cool that they are giving away 8 trips, so almost everyone will be able to get a chance at one.  If you are from the GTA, you will, of course, be able to cash-out the trip.

Oct 12th  SAU 3 In Montreal.  These guys are kind of new to the scene, but have put on 2 events in the past.  I have never been able to make it out to one because of scheduling, but I have heard good things.  They do sub-only and double elimination, so it's a little different then the everyone else, so check it out.

Oct 19th: OJA Ottawa BJJ Open. Not to much information out about this one yet.  I get my ottawa events mixed up. There is two each year.  They are a good chance to test your skills against the Ottawa competitors because they come out in full force.

That's enough upcoming events for today!  There are more, like another Grappling Industries Toronto,  OJA provincials, and the IBJJF Montreal Open.  But this is long enough, and there will be plenty of posts to write about them as they approach.

Finally:  I haven't talked about my shoulder much.  It's now been 3 months and a couple weeks since it was injured. I had an MRI (A), got the results, talked to my sports doctor, and picked up the MRI cd.  I am now waiting for an appointment with a surgeon.   There was some talk of not doing surgery, because the tears (labrum and bicep tendon)  are small, but because of where they are, they are still affecting my day to day (sleeping, driving, typing, laundry), they are going to fix it.   Dr. Levy was confident I would be able to see the surgeon in a couple weeks (it's been two since i saw him, I should probably check up on that), and have the surgery before the end of the year.   I haven't bee training or using it really the last few weeks, so it feels not to bad.  Next week I am going to train, and teach, so we shall see how that goes.  It will probably go poorly, and I will end up having to take advil for a week again. Whatever.

Alright, this really is the end.  Thanks for reading and see you on the mats (or side lines, or wherever).

Thursday, 8 August 2013

IBJJF Toronto Open August 3 2013 Report

I've been putting off writing this report and I could say it's because I'm busy at work, or training, or beating The last of us, but while that is kind of true, it's really because I'm just not really excited to write the report.   The tournament was just kind of mediocre.  There was nothing super horrible that stood out, and nothing super amazing.  So I just haven't really felt a lot of drive to write about it.  But, writing about tournaments is what I do, and I promised I would, so here we go.

There were a few things that were not great.

  1. The date:  what is with big tournaments coming to Ontario on long weekends?  Five did it in on Canada Day weekend, and the IBJJF comes to down on Civic Holiday weekend.  Don't these people understand that Canadians like their long weekends to be away?  Also,  Toronto was super busy this weekend with some food festival going on, and, oh yea, the Rogers cup, at York University,  where the tournament was.
  2. The location:  I mentioned it already on the date, but it's worth mentioning in two points.  Don't have a tournament at the same university campus as the rogers cup (kind of a big deal tennis thing apparently)  and then have no directions or information about where to park, which part of the building to go to(if you were lucky to find the right building easily) and whether you have to pay for parking.  We were lucky, we got there super early (no thanks to the parking lot that was the 401), and there was a tiny lot close to the building we needed.  The one ticket machine took my card, charged it, and didn't give me a ticket, but a different one worked.  
  3. The scale was heavy.  A LOT of people complained about it.  A LOT of people were left running and skipping after being well on weight, or under on their home scales, which are usually accurate.  2 of my teammates didn't make weight.  One showed up late (because of the traffic, parking, and location issues) and didn't even get a chance to check before he had to weigh, and was dq'ed, even though he had a lighter gi he could have worn and likely made it.  The other, after flying in the night before and cutting and making weight on the hope scale, was a couple pounds over, and couldn't cut it fast enough.  
  4. The scales were inconsistent.  The outside "test" scale was weighing people .5 heavier then the inside scale, so it was extra heavy.  This is alright, in theory, but it makes people cut extra weight and tire themselves out, just to end up being .5 under on the official scale.  Listen, If you are going to have zero weight allowance have accurate scales that are consistent.  Test them with multiple weights to make sure.  
  5. Ghetto IBJJF score boards, as usual.  I complain about these every time, but I KNOW the IBJJF has good score boards, they had them at worlds.  Use them at all the events PLEASE!!!!   It's not impossible to tell the time by looking at the video recording, but it's not perfect with pauses and whatnot.  Not to mention,  it helps everyone make sure the timekeeper is doing their job.  Let's be honest, we've ALL seen it happen where the time keeper puts 5 instead of 6 minutes on the clock, or forgets to hit start or stop.  It happens more then you think and can be a case for serious issues.  If we could see the time, we (as spectators, coaches, referees) could keep the timekeepers on the ball and know when they are making mistakes.   Not to mention, it's nice as a fighter to be able to see how much time is over / left.  
  6. No warm up area.  We are spoiled in ontario. The OJA always has a warm up area, it's not always big, and it's generally crowded, but it's there.  Five brought a warm up area, and Grappling Industries has introduced one as well.  It's past time the IBJJF stepped up and did the same.  They already have a corralled off area, just put mats on it.  
  7. Spectator Fee: Ok, I know these are pretty standard,  but is it so hard to put it on the tournament information page on the IBJJF website,  and tell us if it's cash only?  Or maybe,  put it on the facebook event,  or tweet it, or ANYTHING!   I know in the states cash is still the more common way of paying for things, but seriously, no one around here uses cash for anything anymore.   I was left scrambling, and thankfully my buddy David helped me out.  it was nice that it was only $5 though.  Props for that. 
  8. The Staff:  They were ok, for the most part.  But there were a few cases of people who didn't seem to be fully trained for their jobs.  This is a pretty common problem at tournaments, and especially when it comes to only hosting a tournament once a year and using a fresh staff.  They were all quite friendly and were working hard though, so this is really more of a neutral point.  
  9. The entry fee. 100 bucks for early bird, I think it was 120 or 125 if you registered late, which wasn't really late at all, it was when most people register.  That is EXPENSIVE.  It was less last year,  even WORLDS was only 100 bucks.  I think they hid the OGA fee in the tournament entry fee, which is sneaky and I am not a fan.  I understand paying a lot for a high quality tournament, but, this tournament did not offer ANYTHING that other, cheaper tournaments don't(unless you count the t-shirt and gracie mag i mention below, but you get that at worlds to).
So, apparently there were a bunch of things that were not great... once I get going on a rant It just kind of keeps going and going and going.  A lot of this is pretty minor and a lot of it is pretty common among many tournaments.   So, please,  if you run a tournament, do not make these mistakes.  

We can't be all negative, well, we could,  there was that one tournament in Michigan that really had nothing good about it.  But, this tournament had lots of good points to:
  • The photographer they had, Veron,  did an amazing job!  He's been around the Ontario scene taking pictures at quite a few events lately and he is a pro.  He always manages to get the pictures of me making funny faces when I announce the winners of fights while reffing.  Seriously though, he's got some great timing in matches and takes great photos.  He didn't stick to just one mat, or division, and covered the event really well. You can see the photos here on the ibjjf album.  (This point is totally a ninja edit, I don't know how i forgot to mention him originally, but seriously , he is a great event photographer).
  • Started On time:  Even early actually.  My teammate Steve was lined up and ready at his mat almost 15 minutes before the start time. Their match (which he won,  fairly dominantly (until the last few seconds when he got to relaxed and almost got bow and arrowed)) started at 10:00 sharp.  But the mid afternoon they somehow ended up a bit behind schedule, but It was manageable.  They should probably have more mats next year.  
  • Competent Referees:  I didn't see any terrible mistakes by the referees. No blatant robberies or really bad calls.  That's not to say they didn't happen, but I didn't see any.  The refs weren't always quick to give points, maybe double checking in their head the situation was right or whatever, I don't know.  I just realized, there was definitely one questionable call.  My friend Arwin got ankle locked and knee reaped. You can see it in this picture.  Ankle locks are tricky, because, like in this case, the guy getting ankle locked can roll that way and it turns it into a reap.  
  • Free T-shirt and Gracie mag. Everyone loves getting an event t-shirt and having a gracie mag to entertain you on the drive home, or while waiting for team mates or whatever is nice to.  
  • Schedule out a few days before the event.  This is pretty helpful for planning, and they have a fairly detailed schedule which is nice.  
  • Brackets online the night before.  They may not have really announced it well (or at all) but they were up by Friday afternoon.  Some people like to see who they are fighting, some don't. It's nice to have that option.   It would be even nicer if they were in a simple PDF or searchable, instead of the ridiculous silverlight app, but hey, it's better then nothing.   It would also be nice if they were posted on the wall at the venue. 
  • More black, brown, and purple belts then last year.  Last year, I think there was only 1 blackbelt division and absolute. This year there was 3, or maybe even 4.  There were a bunch of brown belt fights, and tonnes of purple.  The scene is evolving and I like it!  I hope this trend continues at more tournament in Ontario. 
  • More ladies were there then last year.  Last year, I don't think there were any purple belt women, no masters women, and only a handful of blue and whites. This year, there was a purple division, one or two masters divisions, lots (well, relatively lots, for women) of blues, and lots of whites!  It was nice to see.  
  • More international feeling then last year. Last year, there was a few from the states, and Oli Geddes to give the tournament a non GTA feel.  This year, Oli Geddes was back again and there were a LOT of unfamiliar faces from New York especially but also a big team came from Ottawa and other fairly long drives away.
  • There were some great matches.  The purple feather and light weight divisions were ridiculously competitive.  There some serious wars in them. Congrats to Arther for picking up his first IBJJF Gold!  The black belt matches were pretty excellent to.  Gringo Vs Andre Figueira was great.  Andre went after a baseball choke which was quite sneaky and put a stop to Gringos pass for quite a while.  Gringo managed to get past it though, and ended the match with his back going after a bow and arrow.  Speaking of baseball chokes! There was another guy in Jon's division who put someone to sleep with it!   It was weird to see!  They ended up faceing each other, and Jon lost, but not by the baseball choke. I'll be honest, I probably would have laughed pretty hard if he had been caught by it. But Jon respected the grips (maybe to much) and didn't try to pass when he had them set up.

Pura had a decent sized team out, but with a bunch of us sidelined with injuries and away on vacations and whatnot they weren't able to reproduce last years 3rd place results.  Everyone looked really good out there though. Especially Greg Young,  man, that guy is scary.  He is so explosive and balls out, I would not want to have to fight him.   I hope he competes more because it's pretty entertaining to watch.  

Tomorrow I find out what my sports doctor wants to do with my shoulder.  There is a small tear in the labrum, and in my bicep tendon.  No big tears, so maybe no surgery. We shall see what he says.  Either way, competition is still pretty far down the road, since I tried training earlier this week, and ended up hardly sleeping at all on Monday night because of it(truth be told, it's quite possible i just fell asleep on it wrong, because it didn't really hurt when I went to bed).

Next weekend we make the drive up the 401 to Montreal for Grappling Industries No Gi Worlds something something something. Should be a pretty good event,  they are giving away a couple trips to No Gi Worlds which would be cool to win. Alasdair and Jon will be competing, I'll be refereeing.  Should be a fun time. Then on Sunday WANDERLEI SILVA IS IN TOWN!  Tickets are very reasonable(and they are supporting relief efforts in Haiti), and it should be a cool little event.  I'll be there talking pictures and stuff.

September 7th is the next grappling industries event in Toronto.   Here is the poster.  They are giving away a bunch of trips, as usual.  I've got my fingers crossed my shoulder will be magically ok by this, but I think that is an unrealistic dream and I am planning on more like maybe the IBJJF Montreal, or even something early 2014.  

Also coming up is the GTA Classic.  This is one of the OJA's best tournaments.  It's a good back to school kind of event.  Gi only, so it's not a super long day. Plus they give samurai swords to the absolute winners, which is bad ass.  (I'll be honest, the quality of last years swords is a bit suspect, but maybe mine was just a lemon).  Registration opens Friday(August 9th), and the first 50 get a t-shirt!  

There is a cool new site in the works called True North BJJ.   It's focus is on getting tournament information out there that is useful for people.  It's going to steer away from the Meme's and bro-ness that seem to be around on a lot of jiu jitsu communities and work more on getting quality content that people who do jiu jitsu in Ontario and the surrounding area want and need like transit information for tournaments. You can find them on  twitter and facebook or their website.  Look for some content written by yours truly to be there soon(ish), as I get time to write it.

Don't be surprised if you don't here from me till after grappling Industries Montreal. Life is pretty crazy right now, with my work moving to Hamilton(YAY), and probably going to be starting seeing my phsyio therapist regularly (and for doing more then a few range of motions exercises) plus lots of strength training outside of that.  

I'm going bike shopping this weekend I think, it would be pretty pathetic for me to drive the 6-7k to work when the weather is nice.  I'll probably end up biking some days, taking the bus there and running home some days, and then when the weather gets shitty, driving.  I haven't really biked since like 5 years ago camping, and before that, it was probably almost 5 years to.  My butt was super sore after that, but hopefully it adjusts quickly.  I think I'm just going to get a super cheap one first, and then if I actually get into the habit of biking, maybe next spring save some money for a fancy one. I don't want to spend to much, b/c let's be honest, downtown Hamilton isn't the safest place to have a bicycle.

Thursday, 1 August 2013

My New Project!

Hey Everyone!

So, I posted this on facebook last week, but I haven't posted it here yet.  Starting in September I will be teaching a ladies only class at Pura BJJ!!

Like it says on the poster, Wednesdays 6 to 7 pm, starting in September.  It's going to be free for the month of September as well!  After September, there will be a special membership, that includes the ladies only classes and the BJJ 101 classes.  Of course the ladies are welcome to getting a full membership but professor PJ wanted to give them some options to help with the transition and to make doing jiu jitsu easier for them.  

My friend Heather,  in the picture, is going to be at the classes to, so the ladies will have some experienced people to work with and help them along the way.  The class dynamics will be kind of weird at first, because it's going to be almost entirely new students.  They won't have the hierarchy of experienced students that most classes have.  I  ran into this when I was starting up a judo class years ago to.  I think there will be a few less egos this time around so it should be a smooth process.

I'm really excited for this opportunity.  I'm super thankful that Prof PJ is giving me the chance to teach some classes and build a army of jiu jitsu girls:)!   I'm really hoping a few catch the competition bug eventually but I'll be happy even if none of the new students ever compete to!   I just want to help them learn jiu jitsu and have fun!

We may run into some technical difficulties,  the ladies change room is quite small... There is definitely not room for more then 3 or 4 at a time in there.  We may have to commandeer the boys changroom.  That might be awkward though, because the class is gig to be right after the kids, which is a mixed class, and I think there will be a class after as well.... logistics are complicated hahah.  We might have to move some of the boot camp junk from the cubbies to, since there will be more then 1 girl needing to store stuff there at a time. 

I've been trying to come up with a little information handout type thing, with the class details, and bits of important information to give the ladies, but it's been so long since I was new to a class, I don't really know what would be to "DUH" and what is information that they really don't need for now.   Any ideas?

I've been trying to come up with idea for spreading the word about this,  it's posted on facebook, here on my blog. I'm not going near most grappling forums because they are full of assholes.  I wonder if Goodlife would let me put a poster up at the gym there... It's right by Pura, and they have business cards there already.  hmmmm  any other ideas?  Maybe I should post it on r/hamilton,  it's a pretty  quiet sub reddit, but they might like to know.

In other news...

At the time of writing this,  I still don't have the results from my MRI, my shoulder STILL hurts all the time, I can't sleep on my left side, I can't pick shit up with my left arm, and in general it's just plain shitty.  

My work is moving to hamilton in just over a week! I could bike to work, if I had a bike,  public transit is a pretty decent option, and if I was desperate, I could walk!   

Saturday is the IBJJF Toronto Open.

Then 2 weeks after that is the OJA Tournament in Sudbury, and Grappling Industries in Montreal.  Then, in September Grappling industries is back in Toronto, and the GTA classic is also back!   We will be making the trip down the 401 to the Grappling Industries event.

Can you believe it's August already?  holy crap, where on earth did summer go?  I would have thought that with my shoulder being useless time would have gone slow, but I have no idea what happened to June or July!  

There is going to be a camp at Art of Jiu Jitsu in November!   We had so much fun last summer I really hope we ca get to it.  I've got my fingers crossed that it will be over a weekend so It doesn't take to many vacation days and whatnot.

Oh!  How could I forget,  Rick Slomba from AOJ is going to be at Pura all week next week.  If my MRI shows my shoulder is toast, I'm going to train and deal with the pain.  If it shows it's not so bad, I'll probably sit on the side lines.  Either way, it should be a pretty excellent week.

That's all for now,  I'll have a report for you next week.  Maybe Monday even, but if I am anything like the MRI department at the general, it'll be 2 weeks.