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Explode early or ooze?

Photo courtesy of Simmr
For years now (nearly 20), one of my main ideas in newaza with respect to escaping hold-downs has been to see the hold coming and to explode into the proper escape technique just before the opponent got completely into it.  Of course, I could still do the technical, methodical, high-leverage, maximal-efficiency escapes, but I was taught and I have been teaching that the escapes happen best when you pull the trigger just before the holder gets set. And that's a pretty good way to teach escapes.
But it's been working differently for me lately.  Lately I find more and more times when I don't see the hold coming and he's pretty well settled before I can pull the trigger on the escape.  In these instances I'm finding that my strength is not as explosive as it once was, so my age-old strategy has been getting me bogged down under people.
But I've still been coming out on top a lot of the time - just not by exploding early.  I have found that I have been having good success controlling the top man's position so that I'm not taking as much punishment, and using that time to relax, take a breath, let it out, find the weakness in the hold, and start oozing or rolling or sliding toward that weakness.
Different strategy for me - been having good success with it.

Patrick Parker is a Christian, husband, father, martial arts teacher, Program Director for a Cardiac Rehab, and a Ph.D. Contact: or phone 601.248.7282 木蓮
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