Thursday, December 20, 2007

West Coast Jiu-Jitsu Board Breaking Party 2007

A few weeks ago, you may have read my post, The Truth About Board Breaking, in which I had said that in actuality, it is quite easy to break a single board, with the proper mix of technique and confidence.

Last night, we had our annual Xmas board breaking party at which each student chose a single strike and a number of 1" boards that they would break with that strike. I also write each student's Xmas card on their board as a little festive touch. You have to understand that board breaking is not really something we do in Jiu-jitsu, we just do it for fun once a year at this party.

I am happy to report that every student who came broke their boards, as you can see in the video above, though not necessarily with the strike they had originally chosen. Breaking a single board is largely psychological. If you doubt for even a second that you can break the board, it causes a slight hesitation at the moment of impact that can prevent the break. In a couple of cases, we had to switch the strike to a different one with which the student had more confidence, but the students can ultimately learn to take the confidence from the switch and put it into other strikes in the future.

I would like to say at this point that I had intended to break 3 1-inch boards with a side kick, having broken 2 with a hammer fist the year before. I attempted a few set-ups, but noticed that since I hadn't been training my side kick as much recently, I didn't quite have the confidence to attempt a 3-board break. With 3 boards if there is any mistake or hesitation whatsoever, you haven't got a chance. Plus, I had never attempted to break 3 boards at once.

Instead, I switched to an elbow strike, which in theory, would have less power because it uses an arm instead of a leg. That being said, I had been training my elbow strike a lot more recently due to my MMA training, so the confidence was there, as you can see in the video. So, though it wasn't the strike with which I had intended to break the boards, I was still able to do the 3-board break that I set out to do.

Them's the breaks...

No comments: