Brazilian Jiu Jitsu In Hong Kong
I had been asked by my good friend Tammy if i’d like to come with her to try and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu in Hong Kong with her (or BJJ as it’s known). In a moment when I didn’t really comprehend what I was signing up for, I agreed. Fast forward a few weeks and Tammy informs me that it’s about time I pulled my finger out and came along.
I met up with Tammy in Lai Chi Kok MTR station, we were early so went to get some food. FYI, it turns out eating a big meal before brazilian Ju Jitsu is a bad idea. After dinner Tammy led me down a couple of dark abandoned looking streets. We went through to the 12th floor of a building that by all accounts looked abandoned. “We’re here” she exclaimed “The Hong Kong Nunchuck association”.
The Class – Training with Ken Man
I entered the room, and was confronted with about 20 quite large Hong Konger’s picking each other up and slamming them on the floor. As a complete novice, and with limited Cantonese this was a very daunting prospect. I was however, committed. After getting changed into proper Jiu Jitsu attire (provided), I was ready to begin.
Ken Man runs Brazilian Jiu Jitsu in Hong Kong. He runs sessions pretty much every weekday evening. Full details can be seen on their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/TrainingwithKenMan/
The class started easily enough. We began with a few warm up exercise, backwards rolls as if you’re escaping from an attacker, or lying on your back and pushing yourselves along with your feet. Both of these seemed about at my level!
Next the ‘fun’ really began. I got paired with a really friendly guy. He was however, at least twice my size. One of the other class members who spoke fluent English came over and started teaching me how to do two basic moves. It turns out we had very different ideas of what basic meant. After about 45 minutes of not managing to not get mullered we began what was described as a free session. “The only rules” said Ken Man “Are no kicking, and no slamming each other into the mat”.
With these reassuring words ringing in my ears I was instantly picked by another class member to fight. The next 5 minutes were spent desperately clinging onto the one move I had half learnt. Needless to say it didn’t end well. I think don’t think I put up much of resistance at all. I was completely exhausted by this stage and very sweaty. After a couple of headlocks, I ended up half strangled and completely bruised! When the whistle finally went I was very relieved. I think my opponents were being nice to me, as they seemed very complementary on my lack of skills.
While the experience had left me achey and exhausted, it had been a very very enjoyable. Even from the perspective of someone with no martial arts experience. All the class members were incredibly friendly, and accommodating of someone with no previous experience whatsoever in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu in Hong Kong. Most of the group had come up to me to introduce themselves during the class. And they all seemed prepared to take it easy on a novice foreigner!
Overall it was a great success! Despite being obliterated, I will be back!