More on the Rules from Chris

Also originally posted on 7/10/06 as “More Rules – Pressure”

More from the Chris Moriarty seminar.  Our conversation really made me reevaluate the way I think about pressure.

I always hear about the need to create pressure from the top.  I work on it every time I roll, trying to feel as heavy as I can to the person on the bottom. 

There’s a technique to this, and it has very little to do with just being heavy. I’m about 240 lbs, and from side control I feel like – about 240 lbs. Klint Radwani from Yamasaki weighs around 175, but when he gets in side control it feels like there’s a tank parked on your chest.  I can’t explain exactly what he’s doing, other than keeping his hips as low to the ground as possible.

In the Chris Moriarty seminar, he mentioned “playing light” from side control.  I thought I must have heard him wrong!  He intentionally plays light?  He briefly explained how this allows him to flow with the person on the bottom, and set up the next move.  Later we discussed this in more detail.

“How do I apply pressure?” is the wrong question to ask.  “Where should I apply pressure?” is a better question, but still off the mark.  The real question is, “Why should I apply pressure?” 

Chris demonstrated this to me from side control. I’m on the bottom, so obviously I want to escape. Chris feels mostly like he’s hovering over me, except his shoulder is in my face and his elbow in my hip.  There is no pressure on my chest or stomach.  I turn in to him a little and shrimp.  Chris is right there on me.  I shrimp more.  We’re moving across the room. Chris is still right on me.  He did apply pressure, of course.  He just didn’t apply pressure everywhere.  His goal isn’t to simply flatten me in to a pancake, it’s to shut down my escape plan.  It’s very effective.

So there’s pressure, and then there’s pressure. Crushing someone’s chest from side control will certainly make them uncomfortable, but understanding the rules of side control allows to apply pressure just where it’s needed.  In this case, I guess the rule is if you can’t move your head, and you can’t move your hip, you can’t move.

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