November 13, 2010

I just returned from Felicia and Valerie's seminar and I had a blast!  First things first.  I have long admired these two fine ladies from afar based on their fight histories and records.   When I walked in the door at Team Karate Center, I was directed to one of the school's mats where they were sitting.

I humbly introduced myself, as I could not believe these two women, who I had been reading about for a couple of years were right here in front of me.  Felicia asked me where I trained?  "Fabio Santos in San Diego."  They were both taken aback.  Felicia  said, "You drove up here from San Diego?  I am honored."   Ha!  Are you kidding?  Felicia has enough gold to keep a team of dentists employed for years, I said, "No, I am honored to have an opportunity to train with you."  Drive two hours to train with a couple of badass BJJ  blackbelts?  Well worth the trip.  (no traffic!)

Class began with a few basic BJJ moves geared toward women's self defense, then moved on to more advanced techniques.  My favorite move of the day was an arm lock from side control.  Basically, if your opponent has you in side control, and places her hand on or near the center of your chest, you hip out, trap that arm, swing you top leg over your opponent's head, squeeze your knees, lift your hips, and voila,  Tap!  I had learned this submission once before, but I never used it.  Might start using it now.

Felicia and Valerie were great instructors.  They are both incredibly technical, and as most of the participants in class were women, they made sure everyone understood the small details of each move. Women spend a lot of time fighting larger opponents, and the small details are so so so very important to execute a move successfully.  Uber cool side note, the seminar was a benefit for a local women's group that assists victims of domestic abuse.  Being a class act ladies.  You are doing it right.

Now on a more humorous party note:  These women are forces to be reckoned with.   Felicia is a quiet artistic type who also doubles as someone you do not want to meet in a dark alley.  Valerie is outgoing and slightly maniacal (in a good way Valerie!), with a rapscallion edge.    

So, thank you, Felicia and Valerie for a wonderful seminar.  I will see you at camp or competition, or both,  next year........;)  


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