Monday night Judo is the best!
I train at two clubs, Wokingham Judo Club on Saturdays, where we focus on different techniques and just practise them and Reading Judo Club on Mondays, a class for advanced Judoka (I'm obviously not advanced, but I go there just to get some additional training), where the focus is solely Randori. We normally start with ne-waza, then move on to some nage-waza, after which we move on to full Randori. It really is a gruelling session, but it helps a lot and you just feel better afterwards, as it is also a very good workout. It also helps that my sensei coaches both these sessions, so I get consistent coaching.
Another reason I like it is the fact there are more brown and black belts than lower belts, like myself, so it is almost like a bottomless pit of advice and tips. I would say that roughly 80% of my (very limited) knowledge of Judo has been learnt from the higher graded Judoka on Monday nights.
We spent most of last night on ne-waza. Ne-waza is the one aspect of Judo where my wrestling background really helps. When on the ground, I am able to make it very difficult for my partner to turn me over. I think that this because in Judo and Jiu Jitsu, being on your back is not a problem, as you can still attack from that position. However, in wrestling, the main objective is not to get on your back, so you are basically 'programmed' to avoid getting turned over at all costs. This, in my opinion, is the main reason I feel more comfortable on the ground against higher graded Judoka.
I was even able to successfully apply Ude-Garami as well as Kata-Gatame, getting my partner to submit on both occasions. Needless to say, when he eventually turned me over, he got me to submit as well! But it is all good fun and I just can't put into words how much I am enjoying Judo!
My next training session is on Saturday, where we will again be focusing on two or three techniques. I have also decided to enter my first competition and I need to work with my sensei on all the rules and protocol. I am very nervous, but excited at the same time, so any advice or tips are welcome!