Shirindo Jujutsu: This training log update is coming out a bit late, it’s damn hard to get back on it once that routine is broken! Thursdays class was similarly a break in routine, as we were demonstrating for the photographer we had been anticipating for a few weeks. The gentleman in attendance was the same photographer who had taken some snaps used in Martial Arts Illustrated, August 2017 issue, for the interview with Sensei Robert ‘Bert’ Parker regarding Shirindo Jujutsu. The photo-shoot used in the magazine was before my time at the school, so I’m hoping there are some cool snaps of me rocking that sweet black gi and white belt! Anyway, having finished our warm up and Ukemi-Waza, the class posed for a group photo before we moved on to some pad-work; Sensei Bert had us drilling evasive movements followed by a counter strike, I found this was a good drill for working on my distancing and pacing. Moving on, Bert was very keen to allow plenty of time for Nage-Waza and a mysterious drill people kept referring to as ‘Rush Hour’; this had me intrigued, but unfortunately it meant we skipped past the Newaza. So, for the Nage-Waza we had all picked our favourite techniques to drill whilst the photographer caught us in the action. In a previous training log I mentioned I would be drilling my favourite Sutemi-Waza; however, on the night I changed my mind and decided I wanted to drill my favourite of the Te-Waza, the Seoi-Nage. During the Nage-Waza I was training with the lovely Eve (always a pleasure), who had deviated from her prior selection and chosen the standing D’Arce Choke, which for me was awesome as I had previously struggled with the technique. Everything went spot on, I was finally getting the choke, rather than a neck crank with the D’Arce, and Eve was throwing better than I can remember her doing before! Good thing we train on 40mm tatami! I’m really hoping we got some good action shots of us in the air! Finally, we went on to the mysterious drill ‘Rush Hour’, which by now had been explained to me as a sort of pressure testing, inspired by the Rush Hour movies. The premise of this drill is to have two Tori’s, back-to-back, inside a circle of potential opponents who will attack two at a time. The Tori’s must defend themselves from the attackers, whilst also protecting their partner by not creating too much distance, and returning to the back-to-back position. This provided an interesting challenge because many of the few techniques I know would result in me throwing the opponent behind me, where my partner is standing! I found myself unable to fully access my memory of various techniques, more so than with any other randori or pressure testing I’d done before; but, I consistently managed to do something! I’m sure these drills will become more intuitive as I commit more techniques to memory, but for now I’ll keep trying to instil the basics.