I taught two classes today and continued the current focus of armbars. Just one technique per class... armbar from mount in the day class and armbar from guard in the basics. Nothing special, nothing flashy, just basic techniques that will work at all levels and a focus on being able to maintain tight control in the finishing position.
My favourite thing about teaching like this is that I can see everyone start drilling the technique and a lot will be struggling with basic movements and positioning. Then once those problems are corrected, by sticking to the same basic technique throughout the class I can add in numerous details which everyone will be able to implement straight away. That means everyone leaves the class with a new technique which they can start to use immediately rather than having experienced numerous techniques for the first time ever and be unable to do any of them well. I'm sure this approach can be frustrating to some people because they want to learn everything straight away, but in the long run a slow and steady approach is definitely the way to go. If you want to learn quicker, train more.
I'd been off sparring most of last week as I'd been a bit ill, so I turned it up a notch tonight which is always fun. Lots more subs than normal in order to work up a proper sweat. I need to do this for a few weeks now as I'm going to be competing at black belt for the first time in November. The only downside is that both my knees are now pretty sore (I'm awaiting surgery on both of them) but I can't resist competing so it's got to be done. This comes back to how much I love jiu-jitsu, the feeling of competing is awesome, I can't resist it.
One other thing I've been thinking about on the ego issue while rolling with lower grades is this... people fight much harder if they think they've earned a position than if you just give it up easily. I have turtled up before and then been surprised that my rolling partner doesn't engage, which they said was because they thought it was a trap (Admiral Ackbar style). If people think they got to a position by merit though, they tend to really go for it as they see there chance to tap a higher grade (and who doesn't like doing that? haha).
Let's hope my knees feel good tomorrow so I can get my ass kicked by my instructor.