Players with a lot of heart.

Something unusual happened on Tuesday. We had seven players on the mat and four of them were injured. That means the majority of the players training that day were injured.

One had an injured back. One had a slightly fractured nose and a newly-sprained wrist. One had a badly injured wrist. And one had a badly injured ankle. Yet, they chose to come for training.

We made sure that those with sprains wore braces and wraps to provide some compression and stability. Next we reminded everyone else on the mat (the three others who were not injured) to be extra careful. And finally, we reminded the injured players to not lose themselves in the drills so much so that they would become reckless.

Everybody played their part. The injured players were careful and so were their uninjured teammates. Just in case, I kept a close eye on things and constantly reminded the players to be careful. The entire session went smoothly without anyone's injury getting aggravated.

They learned a lot.

For the first hour, we revised the various juji-gatame rolls that I had introduced to them last week. We had the girls do drills for the Iastkevich Roll, Adams Roll, Traineau Roll and the "Figure-4 Pressure Roll".

At first I had them do it without resistance. Once they went through all the drills, I had them do them with resistance. They all did a good job of it.

One of the players was a big guy with no training partner on the mat. So, he couldn't do the drills but he explained what was going on to a newcomer, who also couldn't do the armlock drills because she was injured. In explaining the move, he was also refreshing his understanding of the technique.  

By the end of the first hour, the players were pretty tired out. But they all still had to learn shimewaza. Around that time, two big-sized guys had arrived, having rushed over from work. With everyone having suitable training partners, we proceeded to work on shimewaza.

The first was gyaku-juji-jime from the guard position. Then sode-guruma-jime from on top. Finally, we did koshi-jime. Everyone had a fun time learning strangles.

We ended with a light randori, which was nevertheless still quite tiring. A nice surprise after we bowed out was that one of our players brought Musang King mooncakes for everyone.

I was really proud of our players who despite injury came for practice, and for their uninjured teammates for taking care of them during drills. It was a very satisfying and inspiring session.